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Swimming with Crocs in Darwin

darwin

Australia makes me do stupid adventurous things. 

If I can say one thing about my time spent in Australia, both in 2011 and now in 2014, is that it’s been exciting. It started with sleeping in the open in the Outback with dingoes roaming around nearby. Then the riding a motorcycle through rural Queensland. And scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef, followed by bungee jumping over the Cairns rainforest.

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Princess Kate

When I started planning this trip over two years ago, I knew I wanted to come back for a visit and also go to a place in Australia that I hadn’t yet been. Darwin made the most sense because it was closer to Asia and gave me the chance to see the Outback. But one activity had me intrigued the moment I found out about it: Crocosaurus Cove’s Cage of Death. Attraction names don’t get any more ominous than that, eh?

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My friend Kate did it during her trip, so I had a bit of an idea of what to expect. Sammi and I showed up first thing in the morning when thankfully there weren’t many other people to witness my demise. Our “briefing,” if you could call it that, essentially consisted of one rule: don’t stick your fingers through the hole. Simple enough. Sammi and I changed into our swimsuits, grabbed goggles and the GoPro and climbed into the Cage.

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Scared Face with Prince William

The Cage itself is a tube of plastic with a mesh bottom that gets lowered into the crocodile enclosure. From there, you can dive under the water and see them up close, especially when the keepers start taunting them with breakfast. I admit that I may have screamed a time or two, but was glad to be so close to the creatures, a male and female named William and Kate.

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Our dive with death only lasted 15 minutes, but we were still on a high when we joined the Big Croc Feeding VIP tour, starting with a walk through the reptile house. It was here where two of Australia’s most deadly snakes, the eastern brown snake and the inland taipan. We didn’t hold those, but we did hold the olive python, the type of snake that ate a croc in the image that went viral.

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Sammi and her Olive Python

The day ended with a behind-the-scenes feeding of the crocs, starting with the big ones, which we fed large hunks of meat, to the small ones, which were fed on a fishing pole. Crocosaurus Cove, it should be noted, is not a zoo, but rather a wildlife park devoted to the native reptile species of Australia. They give you the chance to get up close with many types of animals you may not otherwise see, but their priority is always to protect them.

Our visit to Crocosaurus Cove, including the Cage of Death and VIP tour, were compliments of Tourism Northern Territory and Crocosaurus Cove. Some of the above photos were purchased from Crocosaurus Cove.

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7 Responses to Swimming with Crocs in Darwin

  1. The Guy April 29, 2014 at 11:34 am #

    Wow, what an immensely unique experience. I’ve seen swimming/diving with sharks before but never crocodiles. It looks amazing.
    The Guy recently posted..Review Of The White Hart Hotel Hampton WickMy Profile

  2. Adventurous Kate May 1, 2014 at 2:01 pm #

    Ay yi yi! Glad you had fun! :-) I’m jealous that you got to dive with William and Kate!
    Adventurous Kate recently posted..Seaside, Florida — Truman’s Pastel UniverseMy Profile

  3. Victoria May 4, 2014 at 3:23 am #

    Caroline, this looks great and something that I could soooo possibly do but with a gulp in my throat though LOL! As a matter of fact, I was just watching a BBC feature on South Africa where they have the crocodiles in a cage which still looked risky to me but this glass dome thing feels and looks so much better. ‘Looks like you had a brilliant time. :)
    Victoria recently posted..If you’re looking for a cheap holiday. The Polish Baltic Sea is pretty alright!My Profile

  4. elaine schoch May 5, 2014 at 11:15 pm #

    Wow! That sounds very “adventurous”. Actually, I think I would have screamed a time or five myself. I went to a gator rescue in TX earlier this year – nothing like this. What an experience.
    elaine schoch recently posted..I want to be in an Octopuses Garden…at the Monterey Bay AquariumMy Profile

    • Caroline May 6, 2014 at 9:04 am #

      Thanks for the comment, Elaine! So nice to hear from you.

  5. Nicole January 8, 2015 at 10:48 am #

    This has been on my Darwin To-Do list for yonks! Glad you made the plunge (and got out with all your fingers and toes in tact ;) )

    Silly question – is the park in the centre of Darwin? Did you find it easy to get to?

    • Caroline January 10, 2015 at 11:14 pm #

      Hey Nicole!
      Yes, super easy to get to. It’s right down the street from all the hostels. It took me less than 2 minutes to walk!

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