Crocosaurus Cove

This item appears on page 80 of the May 2009 issue.
Cage of Death. Photo: Wade Hoffman (

In Darwin, Australia, Crocosaurus Cove (58 Mitchell St.; phone +61 8 8981 7522, tells guests to bring shorts or swimsuits and swim in the separate pool alongside the croc enclosure. Entry, AU$28 (near US$18) adult, AU$22 senior, AU$16 child (4-14).

But to get up close, they offer the Cage of Death, a transparent acrylic cage in which up to two participants are suspended above a saltwater crocodile enclosure and slowly lowered in for a stay of about 15 minutes. There is air at the top, but participants free dive. This costs an extra AU$120 (US$78) single or AU$160 for two. In each of three pens there is one adult male croc (the largest at 18 feet and 1,741 pounds) and in a fourth is a mating pair.

Also visit the world’s largest display of Australian reptiles, the 2-story freshwater aquarium, the turtle sanctuary, displays of Aboriginal art, the souvenir shop and the cafĂ©. Open 8-6 daily.

• The nearby Novotel Darwin Atrium (100 The Esplanade, Darwin, NT 0800, Australia; phone +61 8 8941 0755, fax +61 8 8981 6108, has a year-round “Cage of Death” package that includes the experience; one night’s lodging for two starts at AU$287 (US$187). A “Croc Cove” package that includes admission starts at AU$197 per night. An upgrade to a harbor-view apartment costs an extra AU$140 per night.