Thump, Thump. Your heart is racing as you head down the ladder into the big, plastic cage that rests over the crocodile pool. You step off the ladder into knee deep, cool water. Your heart is still racing as the cage rattles to the left, then the right, as you get lifted over the crocodiles into another pool. As you’re lowered into the shoulder deep water you start to look around, only to realize there is not only one, but two crocodiles eying you up from the other side of the pool.
Crocosaurus Cove in Darwin, Australia is one of the only places on earth where you can get in the water with some of the largest crocodiles in the World. Do not worry, this is a safe activity as long as you follow the safety rules. If you don’t, well the consequences could be dire, resulting in you possibly losing an arm, hand or finger. Your cage dive begins with a full safety review of all this, just to make sure everyone is on the same page.
Once the safety review is over you have nothing but time as you wait for your dive time and muster up the courage to jump into the pool with the biggest crocodiles in Australia. To take our mind off it, we took a walk around to see the other displays that were on offer. We found ourselves at the large fish tank for the morning feeding. This tank contained several large fish, a stingray and a large hammerhead fish.
Once the feeding was done, despite Lina’s fear of snakes, we headed into the amphibian building. The house holds some of the World’s deadliest snakes, all native to Australia. Along with a variety of lizards and frogs that can be found in this country. If you’re lucky, you will be able to hold a baby crocodile or maybe a snake, but don’t hold the Eastern Brown snake as it’s the deadliest in Australia and touted at the most venomous snake in the World.
Have you ever seen the crocodile from the movie, Crocodile Dundee? Well he lives here, so go check out, Burt, the movie star. At 11:30am they feed all of the crocodiles within the park. As our cage time was at noon, we anxiously watched them make the rounds feeding all the crocs in the park, from the biggest to the smallest. Whack goes a sound like a deep base noise. Don’t worry, that’s just the air pushing out of the crocodiles mouth as it jumps out of the water trying to get that peace of meat.
After watching several of them be fed, it was a rush to think we would be going into a cage and lowered into the water with them. They are not joking when they tout they have the 2nd and 3rd largest crocodiles on the planet (in captivity of course). This fact alone gets the heart pumping as we were assigned snorkels, briefed again on safety, given a GoPro and shown the way to the ladder of the cage.
Now it’s time to take that walk into the cage of death. As the cage lowers into the water you can’t help but think
“Am I really doing this?”
In the front of your mind you repeat its 100% safe but in the back of your mind there’s something saying you’re going to die. Do we have a death wish? I guess you could say maybe we do, but you only live once. You can do your dive by yourself or with a partner, it helps to have two of you because you have someone to converse with while spending 20 minutes in the water.
The crocodiles wasted no time in checking out the cage. I’m sure they were thinking a second course was being served. To get the best look we had to dive under the water and peer through the cage. The size of them is quite scary from that perspective. We had been lowered into the pool with their famous couple, William and Kate, which meant we had not one but two crocs sizing us up.
The female stayed away, slightly disinterested but watching us nonetheless, while the male crocodile swam back and forth, brushing against the side of the diving cage. The cage moves back and forth as its tail whacks the side. We never had a moment of serious panic, it is a real rush having them that close to you, and thankfully they only put you into shoulder deep water so you can stand up if need be.
The hardest part is diving under the water and holding your breath while you observe from that perspective. We struggled to keep our bodies from floating to the top, so there were several moments when we were floating into each other. Overall it was a rush and something that was worth adding to the adventure checklist for us.
This park is like none other in the World. Where else can you get into the water with an 18 foot crocodile, take a gander down his throat and live to tell the tale? Have you had an extreme animal experience during your travels? Tell us about it below.
Disclosure: This activity was partially sponsored by Crocosaurus Cove. However, all opinions are 100% mine. All photos are owned by Divergent Travelers.