Dive into summer with Culture Trip’s list of the best places to swim in Melbourne, including the most popular pools, freshwater swimming holes, and beaches. From surfing machines, billabongs, indoor seawater pools and cliffs that overlook cerulean waters reminiscent of the Mediterranean, these places will help you escape the heat this summer. So what are you waiting for?
Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre
Situated in Albert Park, the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre opened in 1997, and it has held events including the 2006 Commonwealth Games and the 2007 FINA World Swimming Championships. The centre has competition pools, lap pools, a 34-degree Hydrotherapy Pool, 14 dive boards, a 50-metre waterslide, as well as a wave pool which runs every 30 minutes. The centre is also home to Victoria’s only FlowRider, where you can catch a gnarly wave.
St Kilda Sea Baths
Established in the 19th century when swimming in the ocean was a big no-no, St Kilda Sea Baths has been rebuilt and refurbished several times and now offers Australia’s only heated seawater pool. The 25-metre heated pool is pumped with seawater from Port Phillip Bay and offers views of the beach. There is also a hydrotherapy pool which can help to relieve muscular aches, injuries and skin ailments.
St Kilda Sea Baths, 10-18 Jacka Blvd, St Kilda, Victoria, Australia, +61 3 9593 8228
The Pillars at Mount Martha
You would be forgiven for thinking you have stumbled upon a slice of the south of France when visiting The Pillars at Mount Martha. Located on the Mornington Peninsula, these crystal waters were once Victoria’s best-kept secret, and now they attract daring bathers who visit these sandstone formations only to take the plunge into the refreshing turquoise water below. The area is also teeming with sea life, so remember to pack your snorkel.
If cliff diving sounds a bit extreme to you, then head 40 minutes south of Mount Martha to Sorrento where you will find gentle, lapping waters at the Sorrento front beach. Watch as the Queenscliff-Sorrento ferry pulls in and out of port and relax on the rolling lawns. Perfect for families with young children, this is a safe beach, complete with tranquil tides.
Laughing Waters Swimming Hole
Laughing Waters Swimming Hole in Eltham is a secluded spot where you can lounge along the banks on an inflatable lilo and enjoy the peaceful native bush surrounds. The water quality in this stretch of the Yarra is better than you’d find upstream or further downstream. Laughing Waters has shallow and deep sections and flat rocks for sunbathing.
Billabong at Turpin Falls
The billabong at Turpin Falls is located 44 kilometres from Daylesford and is fed by the Campaspe River. The deep pool is enclosed by 20-metre-high walls and is always cold, making it ideal for the hottest summer days. Once home to the Turpin Falls Swimming Club in the 1930s, the pool is a popular place for those looking to escape the crowds.