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Date: 14/03/2011

Visitors to Australia flock to experience Cage of Death

Despite being a popular destination with backpackers and traditional holidaymakers alike, Australia has always had a reputation for hosting a wide range of dangerous wildlife, from deadly spiders to great white sharks, leading to numerous claims on single trip travel insurance. However, it is one of their most feared species which is proving an unlikely tourist attraction.

For those exploring the world on backpacker travel insurance, hiking in the Outback has been a popular activity but adrenaline junkies and wildlife lovers alike are keen to experience Australia's latest offering: the Cage of Death.

Attractively titled, the venture involves being dangled into crocodile invested waters with nothing more than an inch and a half of plastic between human flesh and reptile teeth. Volunteers stand in an octagonal Perspex chamber, which is then slowly lowered into crocodile pools at Crocosaurus Cove, situated in Darwin, allowing reptilian enthusiasts to get up close and personal with the leathery skinned beasts. Insurers may pale at the thought of tourists voluntarily swimming with the crocodiles but the experience is said to be entirely safe, despite the bite marks on the cages! However, it would probably be a good idea for those planning to have a go to check their backpacker travel insurance policy does cover any possible mishaps.

It should be made clear at this point that the crocs in the pools are not the relatively docile freshwater miniature versions, but the large saltwater beasties, known for their aggressive temperament and violent nature. Hunted nearly to extinction half a century ago, there are now a quarter of a million in the wilds of Oz, with many more farmed for their meat and skin.

However, tourists tempted to return with a souvenir of the 100 stone giants need to check guidelines before purchasing, as many knick-knacks are prohibited and will be confiscated by Customs, the loss of which will not be covered by single trip travel insurance.