This Beautiful Australian Beach Is Considered One Of The Most Dangerous In The World

There are some beautiful places on our planet — and some of them can kill you. That won't stop many intrepid explorers, nor should it if they're careful and respect the dangers. One such place is Cape Tribulation, one of the most dangerous beaches in Australia. The name, which might give you pause before you even visit, reportedly comes from Lieutenant James Cook. His ship, the Endeavor, sustained severe damage and was stranded there on the Great Barrier Reef for almost a full day in 1770.

Cape Tribulation is a stunning area where the Daintree Rainforest — the oldest rainforest in the world at 135 million years — meets the beach and the Great Barrier Reef, both of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. There is much to do there, including sunbathing at Myall Beach and Kulki Beach, swimming holes, and a mangrove forest to walk through. There are views of Mount Sorrow and Mount Hemming, and you can mountain bike, hike, swim, kayak, and snorkel. While all of this is lovely, the fact remains that many of the plants and animals found around Cape Tribulation can prove deadly for visitors.

Flora and fauna of Cape Tribulation to watch for

Avoid cassowaries, large, flightless, clawed birds that can weigh up to 160 pounds and run up to 31 mph. They're not aggressive, but they can kill you if provoked. They can even jump seven feet in the air. Then, there are wild boars and saltwater crocodiles. Keep an eye out for posted signs regarding the latter, avoid slide marks where they enter the water, and don't put limbs in the water or leave food around. Even if you don't see them, they're there. There are also snakes like the Amethystine Python, Taipan, Eastern Brown, Red-bellied Black, and the Death Adder.

On the plant side, you'll want to avoid the Wait-a-While bush, which is covered in spikes that hurt and can entangle you badly. They look dangerous, so you're less likely to want to touch them than the Stinging Tree, which has attractive shiny red berries and heart-shaped leaves with serrated edges. If you interact with it, however, you can be in pain for months from the tiny shards that enter your skin. Don't even get close because if you breathe the shards in, they can also end your life prematurely.

In the waters surrounding the Great Barrier Reef, you'll find all sorts of potentially deadly animals, like sharks. One significant danger is the Box Jellyfish, which are around all year but more so from October through June. They're translucent and hard to see, and a bad sting can result in death.

How to safely explore Cape Tribulation

Despite the danger, Cape Tribulation is a beautiful place; if you choose to go, there are ways to stay safe. Two boardwalks take you through the rainforest next to the beach; Dubuji Boardwalk is 1.8 miles and walks you through the mangroves and the rainforest. Madja Botanical Walk (part boardwalk, part path) takes you through the Daintree rainforest and dumps you out on Myall Beach. Don't step off the path, which is there for a reason.

There are self-guided trails here through the rainforest, though having a guide with you is a better idea. Plenty of tours you can take will escort you through the beach and the rainforest, and many of them have a barbecue and a cruise. Others will take you snorkeling in the reef, where you can see turtles, giant clams, eagle rays, and more. Having a guide there will also give you a chance to learn about the flora and fauna of the area and the history of this wild and stunning place.

Pay attention to all posted signs, and practice caution at all times. If you give this place the respect and caution it deserves, Cape Tribulation is an incredible experience. It's also an under-the-radar, Instaworthy destination in Australia, so prepare for some unforgettable views.