18 Most Dangerous Beaches in the World

Beaches come with views of the ocean, mountains, or sunsets, making them excellent relaxation spots. However, a vacation to the wrong one could potentially send you to the hospital or get you robbed of all your money. Here are the 18 most dangerous beaches in the world that you should think twice about before visiting.

Cape Tribulation, Australia

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Cape Tribulation is a remote beach in Queensland, Australia, known for housing two UNESCO World Heritage sites—the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest. It’s also home to some of the most dangerous wildlife around. Swimming in its waters means you’re putting yourself at the mercy of saltwater crocodiles, jellyfish, and venomous snakes. Its name should be enough of a warning.

Skeleton Coast, Namibia

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For this beach on the Atlantic coast of Namibia, it’s not about dangerous sea creatures. The Skeleton Coast is plagued with gale-force winds, dangerous crosscurrents, shallow sandbars, and blinding fog. It’s also littered with the remains of whales, seals, and thousands of European shipwrecks.

Hanakapiai Beach, USA

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Hanakapiai is a beach that lies along the Na Pali Coast of Kauai, Hawai’i. Its waters and coastline are so beautiful that they’ll sweep you off your feet, but they’re also so dangerous that they’ll sweep you out into the ocean. Authorities have warned against swimming in them due to violent torrents and waves.

West End Beach, Bahamas

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The Bahamas is probably on your travel checklist, and you may end up on West End Beach, as it’s one of the more popular spots. However, you should note that its waters are infested with tiger sharks, bull sharks, Caribbean reef sharks, and oceanic whitetip sharks. Nurse sharks are also there to send you to the hospital.

North Sentinel Island, India

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One of the Andaman Islands within the territory of India, the beaches of North Sentinel Island are particularly dangerous because of their natives. The Sentinelese are Indigenous inhabitants who have refused contact with the outside world and will kill anyone who steps foot on the island.

Red Triangle, USA

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This section of the California coastline is home to a large population of otters, seals, and sea lions. Sadly, these are delicacies for great white sharks, and their frequent visits to the beach put you in danger. In fact, the Red Triangle has witnessed 11% of all documented great white shark attacks, as The Telegraph shares.

Zipolite Beach, Mexico

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Situated in the state of Oaxaca on the Pacific coast of Mexico, the Zipolite beach puts swimmers at the mercy of strong rip torrents, undertows, and waves. Around 50 swimmers die on the beach each year, and it’s aptly called the “beach of death” by locals nearby.

Kilauea, USA

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Kilauea beaches may beautify the coastlines of Hawai’i, but the whole area has become uninhabitable due to the Kilauea volcano. National Geographic reports on it, sharing that “because this eruption sprang up in an inhabited region, homes have become sitting ducks. Despite being a well-studied and monitored peak, predicting where and when a Kilauea eruption will occur is difficult.”

Fraser Island, Australia

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Another beach off the coast of Queensland, Australia, Fraser Island is home to the largest unconfined aquifer on a sand island in the world. This makes it a hot tourist spot. However, K’gari, as it’s now called, is also known for its tiger sharks, bull sharks, and strong riptides that could pull even the best swimmers out to sea.

Morecambe Bay, UK

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Morecambe Bay is an estuary in Lancashire, home to a host of unpredictable terrain features that can kill you without a trace. Alongside fast tides, draining rivers, and shifting channels are the beach’s popular quicksands. Quicksands have been known to swallow up horses and quad bikes, with the BBC sharing an incident involving 23 Chinese immigrants in 2004.

Gansbaai, South Africa

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Where there are seals, you’re likely to find great white sharks, and the beaches of Gansbaai are not an exception. Gansbaai is popular for its ecotourism, as travelers come to see the great white sharks. Tourists don’t observe them from the shorelines, however. They watch these killers up close through diving cages.

Amazon River Beaches, Brazil

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The Amazon may be known for its dense and diversely populated rainforests, but it also comes with beautiful beaches. These beaches, sadly, prove to be more dangerous than they are satisfying to swim in. Play in the waters, and you’re only inviting piranhas, anacondas, snakes, black caimans, and leeches.

New Smyrna Beach, USA

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Popular for its surf zones, this beach in Central Florida has also seen fatalities from shark attacks and surfing incidents. It’s the beach with the most shark attacks worldwide, with records from the Florida Museum documenting up to 8 instances in 2023.

Boa Viagem, Brazil

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The Boa Viagem beach in the city of Recife has witnessed one of the highest numbers of shark attacks in the past two decades. It’s home to three tiger shark species that have hunted the shorelines for fish and, sometimes, humans. It’s so dangerous that lifeguards don’t even train on the beach itself.

The Bikini Atoll, Marshall Islands

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The beaches of the Bikini Atoll don’t have deadly rip currents, sharks, crocodiles, or snakes. Their danger comes from a man-made problem—radioactive materials littered across due to the U.S. government’s nuclear testing activities. Gamma radiation is so deadly here that its fruits aren’t safe to eat.

Ormond Beach, USA

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This surfing attraction in Florida, known as the “birthplace of speed” due to its daredevil speedsters, comes with its own dangers. Its strong torrents and shark-infested waters have claimed the lives of over 12 people, the most recent being a 69-year-old Tampa man in 2022, as WKMG reports.

Copacabana Beach, Brazil

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Copacabana Beach is located in the legendary city of Rio de Janeiro and has become a top relaxation spot in the world. It may have records of shark attacks, but you should be more worried about the criminals that lurk nearby. The beach is particularly dangerous at night, with robberies and petty thefts running rampant.

Arnhem Land Beaches, Australia

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The Arnhem Land beaches in the northern territory of Australia are plagued with crocodiles and a host of poisonous sea creatures. If you ever think of taking a swim here, you should be particularly worried about fatal venoms from the Irukandji jellyfish, the cube jellyfish, and stonefish.

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