Where to Swim in the Hudson Valley

| © Haley Phelps / Unsplash
Julia Goicochea

New York’s Hudson Valley may be known for its jutting mountains and high-altitude hikes, but you’ll find plenty to enjoy at ground level too. Check out these swimming holes, pools, and other places to swim in the Hudson Valley.

Peekamoose Blue Hole

Natural Feature

No matter the question, the Catskills are almost always an appropriate answer. When it comes to swimming destinations, Rondout Creek’s Peekamoose Blue Hole is the answer. The natural swimming hole is known for its crystal-clear blue water, which belongs to a creek that’s part of New York City’s drinking water watershed.

Beacon River Pool

Swimming Pool, Natural Feature

This unique pool in Dutchess County is situated within Beacon River itself. Partially submerged, the pool is filled with flowing river water and bordered by floating seats, the perfect perches from which to take in river views. As a bonus, Beacon River Pool-goers don’t have to worry about exposure to harsh chlorine: the site’s water quality is among the best in the county.

Taconic State Park


© Jeffrey Workman / Unsplash

Occupying 16 miles of Dutchess County’s Taconic Mountain Range and sharing a border with Massachusetts and Connecticut, Taconic State Park provides plenty of space for swimming. The 64-acre Rudd Pond is a popular pick for Taconic State swimmers, as is Copake Falls.

Kaaterskill Falls

Natural Feature

Kaaterskill Falls
© Rohit Ravindran / Flickr

A popular subject of Hudson River School paintings, Kaaterskill Falls is one of New York’s most famous waterfalls. Two tiers drop from 260 feet to lead into Kaaterskill Creek, an eastern Catskill Mountains waterway, the many swimming holes of which include a naturally-formed pool by the waterfall’s upper section.

Harriman State Park

Natural Feature

Harriman State Park
© Rick McCharles / Flickr

The second-largest park in New York’s parks system is home to 31 lakes, two beaches, miles of streams, and (naturally) some of the Hudson Valley’s best swimming. Lake Welch, the biggest beach in Harriman State Park, and Lake Tiorati are particularly popular destinations.

Rockland Lake State Park


Contrary to its name, the main draw of Rockland Lake State Park isn’t its namesake lake but the adjacent pool. At 25,000 square feet, this swimming pool out-measures an Olympic-sized facility and features diving boards, two water slides, and Hudson River views.

Lake Awosting

Natural Feature

Lake Awosting
© Wikicommons

Earn your cooling dip at Lake Awosting, a secluded body of water in Minnewaska State Park Preserve. A challenging 4.5-mile trail separates preserve visitors from this crystalline mountain lake, which offers what may be the most rewarding swim around.

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