Expectations versus reality. The Esplanade Lagoon, Cairns, Queensland, Australia

Most people who visit Cairns have no idea that although it is right on the coast, it doesn’t really have a beach. Cairns has dark, sticky, smelly mudflats instead. Not only do the mudflats only gradually slope off into the water, requiring a slog of hundreds of metres (yards)¬†through the stinking ooze to water deep enough to swim in, there are sometimes also salt water crocodiles (the worlds largest crocs) out there that think that people are on the menu.

Tourists fly in from all over the world to Cairns which is the hub for trips to the Great Barrier Reef and they come looking for what Australia is famous for; beaches. Trouble is that Cairns has no beach that anyone with any sense would swim at so the local council has built a large salt water pool that is known as “The Esplanade Lagoon”, which backs up to the seawall that separates the city from the mudflats.

The Esplanade Lagoon in Cairns

Although crocodiles are very dangerous and there have been a few attacks around Cairns there is usually only one death a year, on average, attributed to them nationally. To put things into perspective, bees kill three people a year here in Australia.