Port Phillip Bay is one of Melbourne's prettiest sites, but the water at the beach is a different story. According to the Herald Sun, the SuperSprint Gatorade Triathlon Series had to cancel the swimming leg of its competitions for its 2,000 participants at the end of 2012 because the EPA ruled the water unsafe for swimming. In 2005, the government admitted it could not keep the beach sands "needle free."
(Photo: David Caird/Herald Sun)
Doheny State Beach, California
While it lacks debris and trash, California's Doheny Beach has received failing grades by environmental organization Heal the Bay because of the high levels of fecal bacteria in its waters.
(Photo: David McNew/Getty Images)
Chowpatty Beach, Mumbai, India
The sands of Chowpatty are full of debris and scraps from salvaged ships. Its already-polluted water got even worse in 2011, when the MV Rak sank, spilling 60,000 metric tons of coal.
(Photo: Indranil Mukherjee/Getty Images)
Odaiba, Tokyo, Japan
Odaiba is an artificial island in the Bay of Tokyo. Its beauty is undisputed, but swimming and even wading in the shallows is highly discouraged. According to the L.A. Times, the sewage plants upstream leave high amounts of fecal matter in the water.
Marunda Beach, Jakarta, Indonesia
Despite the thick layer of trash on top of the dirty water, Marunda draws visitors. It has become increasingly hard for fishermen to see the fish through the layer of dark cooking oil floating on top of the water. Recently the Public Housing Ministry voted to construct 16,000 low-income houses there for struggling fisherman.