London’s superb outdoor swimming pools
Hot and sticky? Try going for a swim in one of London’s superb outdoor swimming pools. Even in the very heart of London, you can find somewhere to swim outdoors, although all the swimming areas can get very busy in the high season or during school holidays. Its high time to search for some of the best serviced apartments near Covent Garden in London for a perfect family stay and a fun-filled visit to London’s superb outdoor swimming pools.
In Central London, the best place to go is the Oasis Sports Centre in Covent Garden. Situated only a few minutes from Covent Garden tube station, it has a lovely sun terrace where you can relax after your swim. If you fancy an Aquafit class, there is often one available in the adjacent indoor pool.
Alternatively, you can follow in the footsteps of Londoners and head for Hyde Park. This beautiful Royal Park is home to the Serpentine Lake, a wonderful swimming spot although you will probably have to share it with ducks and swans. Hardy swimmers use this lake all year round – and even have been known to break the ice on the lake in order to go for a swim in the depth of winter. You can also hire rowing boats and pedalos to explore the length of the lake. Sun loungers can be hired along the banks of the Serpentine, or you can simply spread out your towel on the grass and relax.
Another popular location is Hampstead Heath. Admire the stunning views across London, have a stroll around the Heath and find your way to the wild bathing ponds. Three of the ponds have been set aside purely for swimming, but you do need to make your choice carefully. One pond is purely for men, another for women while the third is for mixed bathing.
For those who prefer a more conventional swimming pool, head for the nearby Parliament Hill Lido which is also situated on Hampstead Heath.
A little further afield outside the center of London is the London Fields Lido in Hackney. A very pretty site, close to a wildflower meadow, it is located within a public park. It is also one of the most historic purpose-built swimming pools having been used continuously by Londoners since the 1930s. Opening hours are quite long here, as the pool is floodlit at night.
Make sure to book a stay at any of the best serviced apartments in London and take the Tube southwards to Tooting Bec (the nearest underground station is Streatham Park) and discover the largest outdoor pool in the UK. Originally opened in 1906, the Tooting Bec Lido is one of the most popular outdoor bathing sites in London. The colourful bathing huts surrounding the pool have become an iconic sight, and have appeared in many films.