Summer Survival Week: How to Open a Coconut

Posted by David Borgenicht

(Header image created via Canva)

Coconuts can provide hydration and nourishment, especially when lost on a deserted island. Here’s how to open one, with or without your volleyball companion’s assistance.



  1. Find a stick:
    Find a long stick that comes up to about your waist.
  2. Carve it to a point:
    Sharpen one end of the stick so that it comes to a nice point. If you don't have a pocket knife, you can rub the end of the stick at an angle against a rock. Stick the other end of the stick firmly into the ground.
  3. Bash it:
    Using both hands (and all your strength), crack the outer shell: raise the coconut over your head, then bash it on the sharp point of the stick.
  4. Smash it:
    The inner shell of the coconut is easier to open. Throw it against a rock or tree to get to the meat of it.




  • A real-life castaway inspired the novel Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe. Alexander Selkirk was marooned on a island in the South Pacific in 1704. He survived for 4 years before he was rescued.


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(Excerpt from The Worst-Case Scenario Survive-O-Pedia: Junior Edition.)