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Link’s Awakening guide: Turtle Rock walkthrough

Find the Magic Rod, compass, map, keys, special items, and instrument in Level 8

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock dungeon walkthrough Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

Our Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock walkthrough shows you how to find the dungeon entrance, navigate every room, solve every puzzle, and beat every boss. We’ll also direct you to any useful items — like the compass, map, keys, chests, special items, and the instrument — along the way.

You don’t need a key for this dungeon, so we’re going to walk you through finding the entrance (and fighting the boss there) and navigating the dungeon in one guide. We’ll also point you to a Li’l Devil that will increase your arrow inventory.

Before you start this section of the guide, you’ll need to buy the Bow from the shop in Mabe Village.

Table of contents

Return to Tal Tal Heights and rescue Marin

Return to the shack at the top of Tal Tal Heights (where the Rooster has taken up residence). Go to the broken bridge to the left. Hookshot across to rescue Marin.

Increase your arrow inventory

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock path to Li’l Devil increase arrows
After you rescue Marin, go left to find Li’l Devil.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon
  1. After Marin leaves, slash the bush on the platform, go down, and Hookshot through the tunnel.
  2. Dodge the boulders, and make your way up the mountain.
  3. At the top of the mountain:
    (a) Lift the boulders for a Secret Seashell.
    (b) Lift the boulder on the right side of the platform to find some stairs.
    (c) Use Magic Powder on the brazier, and Li’l Devil will curse you to carry more arrows.

Find the Turtle Rock entrance

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock path to the entrance
Path to the Turtle Rock entrance.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon
  1. From Li’l Devil, continue west.
  2. Drop down to the south, and in this area:.
    (a) Head all the way west across the ledge at the bottom to find a Heart Piece.
    (b) Return to the stone-filled area, and go inside the cave. Use your Mirror Shield to block the fire.
  3. Exit the cave, and lift the stone on the right to find the Western Tal Tal Heights warp pad.
  4. Go all the way west to the Turtle Rock (that looks like a dragon) statue. Play Frog’s Song of Soul to awaken it.

Turtle Rock entrance boss fight

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock entrance boss fight
Use bombs and your sword to expose Turtle Rock’s head.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

Wait for the Turtle Rock to stop swaying. It’ll pause, and then shake. A second after it shakes, it lunges at you. Run out of the way, and it’ll crash into the wall and stun itself. Drop a bomb next to its head to crack the stone on its head.

You’ll have to do that a few times until its head is exposed.

The pace of the fight will pick up, but you just need to keep doing the same thing. Drop bombs, and swing with your sword while it’s stunned until you win.

Turtle Rock item and boss locations

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock dungeon item and boss locations map
Turtle Rock dungeon item and boss locations map.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

The map above shows an overview of the Turtle Rock dungeon. We’ve marked the locations of the important items like the Compass, Stone Beak, and Map, as well as the Magic Rod. We’ve also marked the boss fights and the side-scrolling tunnel entrances and exits (in blue).

Find the Map

  1. From the entrance, head north and east toward the planchette room marked on the map. (Use the Boomerang to defeat the Vire, which is like a giant bat).
  2. Shove the planchette-looking paver block to create a temporary walkway up. It’s only one block wide, but that’s enough room to start a dash-jump to the left. (You can also control where it goes with the left thumbstick to make your jump easier — we’re going to get this hint from an Owl Statue in just a minute.)
  3. Shove the top and bottom blocks left, and then the middle block up.
  4. Open the chest for the Turtle Rock Map.

Find the Stone Beak

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock path to the Stone Beak
Path to the Stone Beak.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon
  1. Bomb the wall at the top of the room where you got the map, and then head left and down the stairs.
  2. After the side-scrolling area, clear the enemies and open the chest for the Stone Beak.

Smasher mini-boss fight

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock Smasher mini-boss fight
Play some dodgeball with the Smasher to beat it.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

From the Stone Beak, go up. This fight with Smasher is the same as the one in Face Shrine. Just play dodgeball again.

Find the crystal and a Small Key

  1. Go north from the Smasher mini-boss fight. The switch to unlock the door is under the pot. Talk to the Owl Statue who says to “Fill all the holes with the rock that rolls. This [left thumbstick] is the key!”
  2. Go back south and then west. Use the paver planchette to fill in the gap.
    (a) Push it left, and then follow the upper edge of the hole.
    (b) In the top left, turn around and follow the bottom edge back down.
    (c) Do a quick up-right-down when you reach the bottom right to finish it off.
  3. Pick up your Small Key.
  4. Before you leave, bomb the wall along the north side of the room. Go through and hit the crystal once to turn it orange.

Return to the Vire (by the entrance)

  1. Take the stars in the Owl Statue room through the tunnel.
  2. Dash through the two Arm-Mimics, head north. The switch to open the doors is under the top left pot.
  3. Go left to return to the Vire (above the entrance).

Blue Hinox mini-boss fight

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock Blue Hinox mini-boss fight location
Blue Hinox mini-boss fight location.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

From the entrance (the Vire room above the entrance) go left, and then up.

Fight the Blue Hinox the same way you’ve fought the previous two — use your Boomerang and avoid getting grabbed.

Gather rupees on your way to the Rolling Bones mini-boss fight

  1. From the Blue Hinox, go west.
  2. Shove the paver planchette left, and then use the left thumbstick to control it. Cover all the open space — go left, up, left, and down — to drop a chest with 20 rupees.
  3. Go south. Jump the gaps and open the chest for 50 rupees. Go left to the Rolling Bones mini-boss fight.

Rolling Bones mini-boss fight

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock Rollings Bones mini-boss fight
Rolling Bones mini-boss fight.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

This fight is the same as the first time you fought Rolling Bones: Jump the spiked log and hit him with a weapon. That’s it.

Find the compass and a Small Key

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock path to the Compass
Path to the Compass.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon
  1. From the Rolling Bones mini-boss fight, go north.
  2. Defeat the Vire with your Boomerang to drop a Small Key.
  3. Go down two rooms. Handle the Vacuum Mouth, and open the chest for the Compass.

Find another Small Key

  1. Return to the Vire room above the entrance, and go up again.
  2. This time, send the paver two squares to the right and then up to create a path that ends between the two blocks that jut out. Shove the right block to the right and follow the path up.
  3. Unlock the block and go east until you hit a locked door. Unlock it and go through.
  4. Go north through the one-way door.
  5. Talk to the Owl Statue to learn that “To defeat the monsters who hold the key, attack them from a higher place.”
  6. Go north. Keep moving while you take out the Gibdos (mummies), and collect your Small Key. Go left.
  7. Continue past the Dodongo Snakes (don’t bother fighting them — we’ll be back shortly).

Secret Medicine (optional)

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock Secret Medicine location
Optional path to the Secret Medicine.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon
  1. From the Dodongo Snakes, go west, jump the lava, and climb the stairs to the north.
  2. Hookshot over to the chest for some Secret Medicine (if you need it). Drop off to the right to collect a bunch of items.
  3. Go north and through the tunnel. You’ll return to the room with the one-way door.
  4. Retrace your steps past the Dodongo Snakes (and skip them again).

The eye statue, two Small Keys, and stairs to the roof

  1. From the Dodongo Snakes, go west and unlock the door on the left.
  2. Go left west, and defeat the Vire.
  3. Go south through the door in the bottom left corner of the Vire room.
    (a) Talk to the Owl Statue to hear “If the statue looks strange, shoot it with the bow.”
    (b) Stand on the platform in the center of the south wall of the room, and shoot your bow north (the second image in the gallery above).
    (c) Pick up the Small Key.
  4. Go down again for more items.
  5. Go back up, and then left. Shove the two blocks — the left one up, and the right one right (the third image in the gallery above) — to open the chest for a Small Key.
  6. Back to the right, go up, and through the door on the left. Go up the stairs and Hookshot across to the chest for 50 rupees.

Cross the roof and activate the warp pad

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock path across the roof
Path across the roof of Turtle Rock dungeon.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon
  1. Go up the stairs right next to the rupee chest (at the end of the section above). Pick up the Heart Piece on the platform above you.
  2. Activate the Turtle Rock warp pad on your way past.
  3. Go back inside on the right.

Dodongo Snakes mini-boss fight

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock Dodongo Snakes mini-boss fight
Dodongo Snakes mini-boss fight.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

The door on the roof will lead you to the platform above the Dodongo Snakes. Toss bombs down in front of the Dodongo Snakes so that they swallow them. You have to feed each of them three bombs. Just be patient — it takes some trial and error to figure out the timing.

Get to the Blaino mini-boss fight

  1. From the Dodongo Snakes, return to the Owl Statue that gave you a clue about them.
  2. Bomb all the blocks to discover an arrow on the floor (or just look for the cracked wall on the left). Bomb the wall at the point of the arrow.
  3. Go west, unlock the block in the southwest corner, and keep going west for two more rooms.
  4. Climb the stairs, and unlock the block.
  5. Go east, and Hookshot down to the platform along the south wall. Unlock the block and go into the tunnel.
  6. At the other end of the tunnel, drop off the ledge to the south.

Blaino mini-boss fight

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock Blaino mini-boss fight
Blaino mini--boss fight.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

Blaino is a boxer, so he’ll almost always block any attacks you throw at him from the front. Watch for him to wind up and charge at you, and then get out of the way. Let him get just past you, and then turn and attack him.

You’ll have to keep this up for a while. Just keep your shield up to block his jabs.

Get the Magic Rod

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock collect the Magic Rod
Collect the Magic Rod.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

From the Blaino mini-boss fight, go north. (This is why we turned that crystal orange all the way back near the beginning.)

Open the chest to collect the Magic Rod.

Go back down and take Blaino’s portal back to the entrance.

An ice tunnel and a Small Key

  1. From the entrance, go north and west to the last puzzle room you haven’t been able to solve yet (the location is on the map above). Use your Magic Rod to light the braziers and pick up your Small Key.
  2. Go back to the first paver planchette, and send it directly to the right.
  3. Go up the stairs, and up the stairs again to enter a side-scroller tunnel. Use your Magic Rod to melt the ice blocks and go left through the tunnel (use the images in the gallery above to help you).
  4. Unlock the door in the southwest to find Cue Ball.

Cue Ball mini-boss fight

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock Cue Ball mini-boss fight location
Cue Ball mini-boss fight location
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

This fight with Cue Ball is complicated by the lava on the floor, but you’ve got a Boomerang now.

When Cue Ball charges at you, jump over it, and spin around as soon as you land to throw your Boomerang. Just keep jumping, spinning, and Boomeranging until you win.

Get the Nightmare Key

From the Cue Ball fight, go north.

Pave over the entire floor — use the image above to help you (it’s still tricky to pull off) — to get the Nightmare Key.

Get to the Nightmare door

  1. From the Cue Ball boss fight room, go east twice, and then take the narrow path south twice.
  2. Pick up the items, and shove a block into the lava. Jump the gap and go east.
  3. In the middle of the room, take the narrow path south to return to the first paver room.
    (a) Shove the blocks into the lava (second image in the gallery above) to open a path to the stairs in the northeast corner.
  4. Go up the stairs and drop off the platform to the right, and then go up the stairs in the corner.
  5. Take out the ice blocks with your Magic Rod (images in the gallery above) and exit the tunnel.
    (a) On the right side, destroy most of the blocks, and jump to the ledge.
    (b) On the left side, climb down the ladder, and destroy the bottom row of ice.
    (c) Walk in two blocks, and destroy the vertical row.
    (d) Climb the ladder, and jump the gaps to the ladder out.

Hot Head boss fight

Link’s Awakening Turtle Rock Hot Head boss fight
Hot Head boss fight.
Nintendo EPD, Grezzo/Nintendo via Polygon

This fight is surprisingly simple: Stand in the center of the bottom wall with your shield raised, and shoot it with your Magic Rod a lot.

When you hit it, its fire will go out and it’ll bounce around the room a lot. Just keep firing at it with your Magic Rod.

Eventually, it’ll crack open revealing a fleshy head underneath. Just keep shooting it.

Go collect your Heart Container, and then the Thunder Drum in the room to the north.

Back outside, you’ll get your next hint: EGG.