These swimming pools have been around longer than we have! Although there are hundreds of thousands of natural pools, our list is made up of only the best. Now let’s talk about the six natural pools to add to your bucket list!
Natural Pools All Day, Everyday!
1. Terrace Baths in Turkey
$7 USD ($8.84) for Hierapolis Antique Pool
Hours: 6:30 a.m.-8:00 p.m. every day for Pamukkale
April 15 to October 2, 8:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m. for Hierapolis Antique Pool
Take in the turquoise water of the white terraces that cascade the side of the cliff. This is called Pamukkale which translates to “Cotton Castle” in Turkish. The historic area is also home to the remarkably well-preserved ruins of the Greek-Roman city Hierapolis. The site combines natural and man-made wonders. This makes it shine and stand out from other springs in the world!
2. To Sua Ocean Trench in Lotofaga, Samoa
Admission: $8 USD ($10.10 CAD) for adults and $3.83 USD ($4.83 CAD) for kids 6-11 and kids under age get in free!
Hours: 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 12:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sunday
Climbing down the ladder is the safest way to get into this swimming hole. However, you can also dive if you are feeling brave. Although it’s an unusual looking place to swim, it is still loved by many. To Sua is 30 meters deep and was formed during an ancient lava eruption, which caused the land to slip away.
Left behind were two large holes joined by a lava tube cave. It is filled with seawater and connected to the ocean by an underwater cave. An impressive series of canals and tunnels send water from the ocean into the hole from miles away.
3. Oschinensee Lake in Lötschberg, Switzerland
Admission: $32.04 USD ($40.49 CAD) for a gondola lift if you aren’t a hiker!
Hours: Open 24 hours, but swimming is only recommended in the summer months
9:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. for gondola lift
In the Swiss mountains, you will find this lake, fed by the glacial brooks of Bluemlisalp, Oeschinenhorn, Frundenhorn and Doldenhorn. Come for a swim in the summer as the temperatures reach 60℉ (20℃). Among the mountain flora, you will find orchids, gentian and Edelweiss combined with the herds of grazing sheep, cows and wild animals. Nature lovers, swimmers, hikers and sightseers will all enjoy themselves!
4. God’s Bath in Sonora, California
Hours: Open 24 hours
Formerly one of California’s secret swimming holes, it’s easy to see where it got its name. God’s Bath has clear water and smooth rocky architecture that provides a natural playscape. Waterfall slides, underwater bridges, crevices and ledges are all fun to jump from! However, getting to this swimming hole is far from easy. The hiking trail is rated as challenging and potentially dangerous, which means you should probably leave the kids and pets behind.
5. The Dead Sea in Israel and Jordan
Hours: Open 24 hours from April 1 to October 1
Bordering, the West Bank and Jordan is a salt lake whose banks are more than 400 metres below sea level. Its hypersaline water makes floating simple and its mineral-rich black mud is used for therapeutic and cosmetic treatments at area resorts. The Dead Sea has the lowest elevation is the lowest body of water on the surface of Earth
The Dead is about 8.6 times saltier than the ocean. It is so harsh that animals cannot flourish. The high salinity also prevents macroscopic aquatic organisms such as fish and aquatic plants from living in it. Few bacteria and microbial fungi can live in the water.
It’s impossible to sink in the Dead Sea. So if you’re not a swimmer, here is a place for you to go! The unique properties of the water make this one of the best natural pools around.
6. Havasupai, Havasu Falls in Grand Canyon
Admission: $50 USD ($63.08 CAD) and an overnight stay, which vary in price
In the depths of the Grand Canyon, you will find the Havasupai Tribal Lands. Like an oasis deep in the desert, you will find sparkling turquoise waters surrounded by green trees and fiery red walls. However, you will have to hike 10 miles (16 kilometres) both ways through the Grand Canyon. Use this hiking calculator to find out how long it would take you based on your abilities.
DO NOT FORGET TO PACK WATER! Bring insulated bottles to keep your drinks cold and safe from the hot Arizona sun. Pack lightly if you decide to bring a backpack. Have an emergency kit on hand to be ready for anything! Be prepared for a big challenge if you are new to hiking. Just keep going and know the reward at the end is an amazing one!
Contact the official Havasupai tribe tourist office for entry and camping permits!