February 16, 2023
6 mins Read
With blue skies all year round, it’s always a good time to take a dip in Brisbane — especially on those sizzling days! After all, it is the ‘River City’ so what better way to explore than in the water?
Once you’ve had your fill of Brisbane’s best beaches, it’s time to discover the city’s other swimming spots. From huge lap pools and heritage baths to secret swimming holes and luxurious rooftop pools, here are the best Brisbane swimming spots you absolutely need to take the plunge into.
Whether you want to practice your strokes, burn some energy with the kids or simply cool off, there’s an abundance of impressive public swimming pools in Brisbane to choose between no matter where you’re based. However, if we had to pick some special favourites, we’d bookmark the following.
Dip your toe into a bygone era at Spring Hill Baths – the oldest of their kind in the southern hemisphere. This Heritage-listed facility built in 1886 exudes old-world charm from its classic Victorian-era change rooms and grandstand seating. The 25-metre indoor pool offers everything from lap swimming to swimming lessons and aqua aerobics classes.
If there was an award for the atmosphere at a Brisbane pool, it’d go to the Valley Pool. This 50-metre outdoor pool with grandstands has all sorts of aquatic classes and activities, as well as a palm tree view and a bar on site. Aperol slushies anyone?
As well as the usual pool facilities, what makes Centenary Aquatic Centre stand out is its multi-tiered diving platform. Operating at three, five, and 10 metres; have a go at a tuck and spin before you make a splash.
This family-friendly water activity facility has it all and is perfect for kids. As Brisbane’s largest waterpark, Chermside Aquatic Centre features more than 200 metres of twisty water slides and a wading lagoon pool, as well as an outdoor 25-metre lap pool and indoor heated hydro pool.
Along the Brisbane River, UQ Sport Aquatic Centre boasts three heated pools: a 50-metre Olympic-sized outdoor pool, a 25-metre pool, and a Program Pool used for learn-to-swim lessons and infant swimming. There’s also deck-side bleacher seating and landscaped grassed areas throughout the centre.
For those looking to swim somewhere with a beautiful backdrop, Brisbane has more than its iconic inner-city Streets Beach. For a dose of nature, check out these local swimming holes in Brisbane.
Although Shorncliffe Beach and Suttons Beach feature in our list of Brisbane’s best beaches, the title for Redcliffe’s best swimming spot goes to Settlement Cove Lagoon. Surrounded by palm trees and overlooking Moreton Bay, this delightful lagoon with amenities and lifeguard patrol ticks all the boxes.
Since its opening in 1932, Wynnum Wading Pool has become a much-loved family swimming spot. At high tide, the large 128 x 54-metre pool fills with seawater while mesh covers the pipes to keep the marine life out. With a waterslide, adjacent playground, and picnic areas, it’s the ideal paddle spot.
No need to stray too far from the city limits to go chasing waterfalls. Not to be confused with Cedar Creek on the Gold Coast, this Cedar Creek is just a few clicks northwest of Brisbane and is primed for a paddle and a picnic – especially after a decent downpour. Dotted with rock pools of varying depths, this natural hideaway rewards the more sure-footed with trickling falls further upstream. To get there, pop Andy Williams Park into your GPS.
The oldest reservoir in Brisbane is the beautiful Enoggera Reservoir which is open for recreational use. Here you can enjoy a swim in the calm waters, relax on inflatables or even add in some adventure with paddleboarding and kayaking.
Just over an hour south of Brisbane in the heart of the Scenic Rim sits Lake Moogerah – a popular base for all sorts of aquatic sports. This hidden gem holds its own secret: a rocky gorge that doubles as a private 200-metre-long swimming hole around 1.5 metres deep. You can get there via hike or boat.
Brisbane is home to many hotels with pools to lounge around in. Often, these are exclusive for guests only so keep these in mind if you’re choosing somewhere to stay.
The Miami poolside vibe at The Calile Hotel is spectacular. With palm trees, cabanas, and pool service, a day spent here is perfect for laps and relaxation – and easily big enough for both.
Overlooking the South Bank Parklands and Brisbane River, the 23-metre infinity-edge rooftop pool at Emporium Hotel will make you feel like you’re a world away. Here you can bask in Brisbane’s subtropical climate and soak up the distinctive rooftop atmosphere all year round.
Set on a glorious rooftop terrace, grab a cocktail, and float in the stunning infinity pool at Hyatt Regency Brisbane while the city buzzes below.
You could be forgiven for thinking you were in LA when you arrive at the Soleil Pool Bar at Rydges South Bank. Here, it’s all timber blended with a gold and white palette, and DJs on-hand to recreate a pool party atmosphere. There’s also a giant LED screen embedded into the ceiling and an uber-trendy tapas, garden tea, and cocktail menu.
One of Brisbane’s first bars to take the plunge by going rooftop, Limes Rooftop Bar in Fortitude Valley keeps its cool in summer with some perky plunge pools. Take a dip here while sippin’ on a ‘summertime jug’ of Rooftop R&R which includes gin, rose, raspberry, lemon, and tonic.
Grab a lounger and poolside cocktail while soaking in the Vitamin D and panoramic city views (you can see the Brisbane Story Bridge from here) at the Hotel X rooftop bar.
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