If you’re a thrill seeker constantly searching for your next adrenaline high, or maybe you just have a bit of a death wish, perhaps you should visit one of the following 9 most dangerous beaches in the world. Each are dangerous for different reasons, ranging from sharks, to filth, to radiation, to birds that will try to fight you, and MORE. 🙂
Chowpatty Beach, Mumbai
While not a glamorous kind of danger, Chowpatty Beach is no less deadly for its claim to fame: pollution. Deemed unfit for swimming, the beach features a variety of different pollutants, because if you’re going to be famous for being gross, you may as well commit. Not only do debris and scraps from salvaged ships appear on these disgusting shores, but after the MV Rak, a cargo ship, sank off the coast, 60,000 metric tons of coal entered into the mix. Despite all this, however, every September locals celebrate the Hindu festival Ganesha Chaturthi in the murky waters, to honor the god of beginnings, Ganesha.
Schitovaya Bukhta (Shield Bay), Russia
Sticking to human-related dangers for a moment, let’s travel to Russia. Shield Bay is considered by “Surf Atlas” to be a great surfing spot, but that’s only if you can overlook the potential for massive radiation poisoning.
Hopeful wave-riders with a death wish must apply for a permit, partially due to the many old nuclear submarines leaking radiation nearby, and partially due to the number of restricted military facilities based in the area.
In 2002 the radiation problem got so bad that a whale died after spending only a few months in the harbor, and the carcass was so toxic due to water exposure that it was considered a nuclear waste site in and of itself. It’s up to you if it’s worth the risk, though, as the existence of the surfing permits implies, there’s still an interest.
Fraser Island, Australia
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Australia makes this list twice: if its land is as dangerous as it is, it stands to reason that its beaches would follow suit. Take Fraser Island first, located along the southern coast of the massive continent. It is the largest sand island in the world, but what it’s really known for are, its deadly creatures and rip currents.
These deadly creatures include dingoes, which in 2011 mauled a three year old girl, and saltwater crocodiles, not to mention the rip currents, filled with their own deadly creatures like jellyfish and sharks. These rip tides have been known to drag people into the ocean depths with little chance of escape.
Gansbaai, South Africa
Speaking of sharks, this South African beach on the Western Cape is right next to a shallow water channel commonly referred to as “Shark Alley.” Gansbaai itself is known as “The Great White Shark Capital of The World,” because the creatures are attracted to a colony of 60,000 fur seals nearby. But danger be damned- many tourists opt to see the terror up close and personal, by diving with protective cages and practiced tour companies.
Naturally, a beach located in “Volcano National Park” wouldn’t be the safest place for sunbathing and swimming. Mount Kilauea is one of the most active volcanoes in the world, and has been continuously erupting since 1983.
The surrounding waters have been known to heat up to 110 degrees, a fact that keeps the mere two thousand residents of the tiny island away from surfing. None of this should be a surprise, though, since “Kilauea” in Hawaiian literally translates to “spewing” or “much spreading.”
North Sentinel Island, Andaman Islands
Though it seems impossible, there are still areas of the Earth where humans live virtually untouched by the rest of society, and North Sentinel Island is one of the last. Though technically belonging to India, the Indian government is just as interested in interfering with local tribes, as the local tribes are interested in interference, which is to say not at all.
This attitude of non-interference is what makes the beaches of this beautiful forested island so dangerous. In 2004, after a massive earthquake literally shifted a tectonic plate below the island, the Indian government attempted to check on the tribe via helicopter, but upon approach, the tribe rained down on the vehicle with rocks and arrows. In 2006, two drunk fisherman were killed after drifting too close for comfort. For a population believed to hover around 300 people, the citizens of this island are fiercer than almost any modern army.
Cape Tribulation, Australia
The second of two Australian beaches on this list, Cape Tribulation, located in northern Queensland, certainly lives up to its name.
Tribulation means “a cause of great trouble or suffering,” and there’s no better word for the terrifying local creatures in this area.
In addition to the standard scary populations of jellyfish, snakes, and crocodiles we’ve come to expect from Australia, Cape Tribulation is also home to a startlingly high population of cassowaries, which are giant flightless birds in the emu family.
These birds, which can grow up to 160 pounds, are easily provoked and very aggressive towards humans they feel pose a threat.
Beaches of the Amazon, South America
The Amazon is known as one of the most biodiverse areas of the world, boasting over twenty-five hundred species of fish alone.
Because of this, there are bound to be a decent number of less friendly animals mulling about.
On this list are, of course, piranhas, the sharp-toothed fishies known for feeding on humans in dry season, as well as anacondas and electric eels.
Reunion Island Beach, France
Situated about 100 miles southwest of Madagascar, the island this beach is attached to became French territory in 1946, though it has been inhabited by mainly French settlers since the late 1700s.
Reunion Island abolished slavery on December 20th, 1848, a date which is celebrated yearly to this day.
The Island is characterized by its location above a hot spot on the Earth’s crust, its world-record rainfall, and its shark problem. Since 2011, there have been sixteen shark attacks along its beaches, seven of which have been fatal. This may not sound like much, but for context, there are only about 65 shark attacks reported yearly.
You’re more likely to die by a falling vending machine, or a car crash involving a deer. With this rather large shark attack statistic, Reunion Island has seen a sharp decrease in tourism, which could really hurt the local economy. In 2015 alone, surfing registration plummeted by 75%, which paints a rather terrifying picture of this once popular travel destination.