10 Wacky Water Events From Around The World


If you love being in, on, or under the water and are looking for some new things to try while travelling, then look no further! We share 10 wacky water events from around the world! From underwater pumpkin carving to the world championships of death diving, these water events are a fun and unique way to have a new experience, while exploring a new place!

1. Sydney Skinny Ocean Swim – Sydney, Australia

If you are keen to leave your inhibitions behind, then strip down to your birthday suit and participate in the annual Sydney Skinny Ocean Swim. It is the world’s largest nude ocean swim event and is suitable for men and women aged 18 and above. While the conditions are usually calm, you need to be comfortable swimming in the open ocean and there are two different swims you can participate in – a 300m swim or a 900m swim. You can leave your competitive spirit behind though, as this is not a race, the event is about stepping outside of your comfort zone and promoting body confidence. And if you are feeling shy, don’t worry, it is a paid event with no spectators allowed.

Location: Cobblers Beach, Middle Head National Park, Sydney, Australia.

When: Held annually in March.

Website: http://www.thesydneyskinny.com.au/about/sydney-skinny-ocean-swim-event.htm

2. World Championship of Death Diving – Oslo, Norway

While the name sounds quite ominous, the World Championship of Death Diving otherwise known as the Dod’s challenge is actually a pretty humorous event. It is a competition to see who can do the best belly flop from a high diving platform (either 10m or 14m)! There are cash prizes for the winners, but we definitely think it is safer to be a spectator for this event!

Location: Frognor Public Bath, Oslo, Norway. However, there is a range of events held in different locations. Check the website for details.

When: Held annually in June.

Website: https://ww.dodschallenge.com 

3. Key West Mermaid Festival – Florida, USA

If you are looking for a fun festival for the kids, then head to the Key West Mermaid Festival. Set over 5 days in July, the purpose of the festival is to raise awareness about our oceans as well as how to teach people to safely swim in a mermaid tail. And guess what? You can even volunteer to be a mermaid at the event (providing you are over 21)! The event showcases underwater art, local entertainment as well as products from local vendors.

Location:  Florida, USA.

When: Held annually in July.

Website: https://www.keywestmermaidfestival.com/

4. Underwater Music Festival – Florida, USA

This one is for the music lovers out there! Head to Looe Key Reef in Florida, USA for the annual Lower Keys Underwater Music Festival. Dress up as your favorite underwater character, dive under the water, and dance to the underwater-themed music (think Octopus’ Garden) that is played through underwater speakers connected to the dive boats. The purpose of the festival is to appreciate the coral reef and learn how to conserve it. The best way to attend the event is to get in touch with one of the Lower Keys dive operators and book a trip out on one of their boats. 

Location:  Looe Key Reef, Florida, USA.

When: Held annually in July.

Website: http://www.lowerkeyschamber.com/

5. Underwater Bike Race – North Carolina, USA



For the scuba diver lovers out there, if you want to try something a bit different, grab an old bike and head underwater with a tank strapped on your back to compete in the annual Underwater Bike Race in North Carolina, USA. To compete you will need to pay an entry fee (proceeds go to children’s cancer research), BYO bike, and hire some scuba gear. There are two rules to compete: 1. The bike cannot have a motor and 2. only one rider is allowed per bike. Prizes go to best-dressed riders and best-decorated bikes!

Location: USS Indra, Beaufort Inlet, North Carolina, USA.

When: Held annually in July.

Website: https://project543.visitnc.com/underwater/

6. International Regatta of Bathtubs – Dinant, Belgium


Imagine floating down the Meuse river in Belgium in an old decorated bathtub all while enjoying a nice Belgium beer. Every year 50 teams do just that in the International Regatta of Bathtubs. It is free to compete in the 1km race or you are welcome to just watch with the other 25,000 spectators who line up along the riverbank and Charles de Gauelle Bridge to cheer on the competitors. If you decide to compete, then the only rules are that a bathtub is used and it is human-powered. You will also want to decorate your bathtub according to the yearly theme as you can win a prize for the best decorated!

Location: River Meuse in Dinant, Belgium.

When: Held annually in August.

Website: http://www.lesbaignoires.be/

7. Beer Can Regatta – Northern Territory, Australia

If you love drinking beer then the Beer can regatta in Australia is for you! this boat race began in 1974, and the aim is to use old beer cans to make flotation devices to race down the river. Recently this event has been renamed to the Darwin Lions Mini Regatta, and to make this a more family-friendly event, new events have been created to race boats made out of soft drink cans. To enter you need to register and pay a fee, but there are prizes for winners of each race, as well as for the best-decorated boat. Along with the boat race, there are other fun competitions including sandcastle building, thong throwing (flip flop) tug of war, and iron man and women races.

Location:  Darwin Waterfront, Northern Territory, Australia.

When: Held annually in August.

Website: https://beercanregatta.org.au/

8. Bog Snorkelling Championships – Llanwrtyd Wells, Wales

One of the most peculiar races held in Wales is the Bog Snorkelling Championships. Competitors pay an entry fee and dress up in wild and wacky costumes. The aim is to be the fastest to swim two laps of the 60m bog using just a snorkel and fins. Prizes are given out to the race winners as well as those with the craziest costumes. It is also a fun spectator event with food, markets, and a jumping castle on the shore. The festival was created to highlight the importance of bogs (another name for wetlands) in the earth’s ecosystem. 

Location:  Waen Rhydd bog, Llanwrtyd Wells, Wales.

When: Held annually in August.

Website: https://www.green-events.co.uk/?wbs_main

9. Underwater pumpkin carving – various locations, USA

This is for the Halloween lovers out there! In late October head to one of the USA dive operators and check if they are hosting an underwater pumpkin carving competition. Enter with a partner and compete for prizes for the best and scariest pumpkins! This is a fun way to challenge yourself and do something different on a dive. Not only will you need some good knife handling skills, but you will also need to be properly weighted to make sure you, your pumpkin and knife don’t float away. Just make sure you remember to make sure your dive partner knows if and where you are carrying any extra weights!

Location: Various locations throughout the USA.

When: Held annually in October.

Website: An example of one of the events: https://www.facebook.com/events/3355763771108366/

10. Windsor Pumpkin Regatta – Nova Scotia, Canada

If you love pumpkins but aren’t keen to scuba dive for the underwater pumpkin carving, then head to Nova Scotia, Canada for the Windsor Pumpkin Regatta. 

To be lucky enough to participate in this regatta, you need to purchase one or more raffle tickets and the winners get to paddle in giant pumpkins in the 800m race down Lake Pesaquid. The pumpkins are brightly decorated and there are other fun activities on the day like scavenger hunts and farmer’s markets for the spectators. 

Location:  Lake Pesaquid, Falmouth to Windsor, Nova Scotia, Canada.

When: Held annually in October.

Website: http://worldsbiggestpumpkins.com

And if you are looking for more unique experiences to have in, on or under the water, then check out our other articles on 10 unique water activities to add to your bucket list, 10 unique dive experiences to cross off your bucket list, and 10 unique water sports to try!

Note no affiliate links have been included in this article.

About the Author

Amanda and her husband Dean have been certified divers since 2009. Amanda has her advanced open water and Dean is a dive master. They have travelled the world and dived many sites in Australia, Asia, Central America and the Caribbean.

Amanda and Dean have a travel blog called Scatabout which details the fun and unique experiences they have had on their world travels. You can find them doing something adventurous like scuba diving, hiking or something strange like running down the side of a building.

You can follow Scatabout:

YouTube: https://youtube.com/scatabout 

Website: https://scatabout.com 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/scatabout/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/scatabout/