Islands are popular among travelers seeking relaxation and some adventures. But sometimes, they can pose risks greater than an individual can imagine. This is the case of an island located off the southeastern coast of Queensland, Australia. Despite its outer appeal, there's so much more under its sleeves to make it home to the most dangerous beach in the world.
What You Should Know About Fraser Island
Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world with a length of 122 km. The island, also referred to as K’gari by Island’s natives, covers an area of 181,851 hectares and has been designated a world heritage site in 1992 due to its abundant dunes and the lush rainforest surrounding it.
Even though parts of the island are regarded as dangerous, Fraser Island has hosted humans for up to 5000 years and is home to the Butchulla people. The island was first discovered by the British explorer - James Cook in 1770 before it eventually became widely known as the largest sand island in the world.
The 75-Mile Beach Coast
From neck-breaking rip tides to an abundance of sharks, there are many dangers associated with swimming at 75 Mile Beach in Fraser Island. The beach is the most popular in Fraser Island and just like its name, it is 75 miles long, covering the entire Island.
There is always a chance of getting severely injured by something here and even the smallest injury can quickly escalate into a life-threatening situation due to difficulty in accessing medical services. The dangers characterizing the beach make it the number one most dangerous beach in the world and these factors contribute to that title.
No Hospitals On The Island
The lack of hospitals on Fraser Island is one more thing to consider when putting oneself in harm’s way. To get to a hospital quickly, one needs to get on a helicopter flight to a hospital somewhere else in Queensland.
No Lifeguards At The Beach
Lifeguards are necessary to keep people safe on the waters especially when the water is regarded as dangerous but this is not the case at the most popular beach in Fraser Island as there is not a single lifeguard on the beach.
The waters are may even be too dangerous for lifeguards. This leaves the task of staying safe the sole duty of the person who chooses to explore the dangerous waters. The fact that no medical center is located on the island even compounds the risks.
Dingoes Walk Freely On The Island
Dingoes are dogs native to Fraser Island but they are not domesticated due to their wild nature. They frequent 75 Mile Beach and other beaches on the Island to enjoy the sand and sun just like humans. While they can be spotted on the beaches at any time, they are more frequently seen at sunsets. These dogs have sometimes attacked humans, especially children which also puts other people on this beach at risk.
Travelers are advised to stay close to their children, avoid feeding or interacting with the dogs, and always keep an eye on them when they are in sight to avoid any unpredictable attack.
A Large Shark Population
The 75-mile beach at Fraser Island is infamous for its huge population of great sharks and reports of fatal shark attacks are not uncommon here. The most recent shark attack was in 2020 when a man spearfishing on the waters got his leg mauled by a shark. He was eventually taken for treatment but sadly did not make it. Simply staying out of the waters is the best way to stay safe at this beach.
Dangerous Jellyfish Inhabit The Water
An immediate intense sharp pain, muscle spasms, and weakness are some of the things humans experience when stung by the BlueBottle Jellyfish which happens to thrive in the waters of this beach. The creature’s sting is not fatal to humans although it can be extremely painful. Its blue color makes it difficult to spot in the turquoise waters and its tendency to swim in shallow waters also means swimmers are always at risk.
Bluebottle jellyfish are not the only stingy creatures on this Island as the Irukandji jellyfish also inhabits the waters. The extremely venomous sting of this jellyfish causes more pain than the Bluewater jellyfish and those stung by it usually require immediate medical attention as the sting can be fatal. The tiny size and transparent body of the Irunkandji even make it more dangerous as it is difficult to spot.
Despite being home to the most dangerous beach in the world, Fraser Island is still a charming destination for a nice seaside vacation and its beaches are characterized by mesmerizing turquoise waters, surrounding lush vegetation, and pristine white sands. More than 200,000 visitors visit this island yearly and spend an average of 3 days on the island.
There are other parts of the island where it is safe to swim. Some of the safest spots for swimming at Fraser Island include - Lake Mckenzie, Lake Birrabeen, Champagne pools, and El Creek. But besides the beach, there are other things to do at Fraser Island. The island’s rich wildlife include - Kangaroos, brushtail possums, Dingoes, and others. There are mountains and forests on the island for some hiking or mountain climbing/biking. Those who do not want to put up with the danger associated with the waters of the 75-mile beach can simply drive across the entire distance to suck in the scenery on wheels.