Nouméa removes island wide swimming ban introduced after fatal shark attack

Truro, Massachusetts, USA - March 23, 2021: Morning view of a shark warning sign along path to Ballston Beach on Cape Cod

New Caledonia Tourism is pleased to announce that the swimming ban on beaches in the capital Nouméa is being removed and swimming and water sports activities will once again be permitted on all beaches.

The island paradise made it illegal to swim in the sea (apart from a 200-metre stretch of beach) after Australian tourist Chris Davis was killed in a shark attack at the popular Château Royal Beach.

From 6 December, the Baie des Citrons (Lemon Bay)  a 750-metre-long barrier on a 10-hectare protected stretch of water, under the daily supervision of lifeguards from 8.45 am to 5 pm (4 pm in the cool season) will open.

Swimming on the Château Royal and Le Méridien beaches will open on the 8 December and will also include a small supervised swimming area, which will be removed once a long shark net barrier has been installed by the end of March 2024. All other beaches, including Anse Vata Beach, will be open for swimming but without surveillance from tomorrow 6th of December.

Reunion Island has a similar ban in place, limiting recreation in the sea to a perimeter of 300m after a string of fatal attacks which saw the island account for 16 per cent of the world’s fatal shark attacks from 2011 to 2016.

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