Sharrah Pool, Dartmoor
Flanked by dense woodland, Sharrah Pools in Dartmoor is the ideal spot for an outdoor swim. Secluded and magical, a free flowing waterfall feeds into this rocky pool, which is covered by a canopy of trees. The clear, glassy water can often be chilly, so take a flask of tea to help you warm up afterwards. On sunnier days, the flat, smooth rocks scattered around the pool make for great sunbathing platforms.
Woody Bay Rock Pool, Exmoor
This dramatic, natural pool is one of the most stunning sites in the south west. Perched on Exmoor’s wild, rugged coastline, high cliffs and towering mountains help to hide this secret swimming spot. Follow the pebbled path to Woody Bay’s shingle beach, where you’ll find a quiet, peaceful rock pool at the far end.
Grantchester Meadows, Cambridge
Journey an hour from London and you’ll reach Grantchester Meadows in Cambridge. Along with the punters and picnickers, this spot, which sits alongside the River Cam, is always popular with swimmers. Upstream from the busy city, float around leisurely in the water or use the grassy banks and forgotten tree stumps as diving ledges. The meadows are also popular with birdwatchers.
Hampstead Swimming Ponds, London
Comprising one, large mixed sex pond, in addition to a men’s only pool and a more rural, secluded ladies pond, Hampstead Heath’s swimming pools are much-loved by Londoners. All three sites are fed by the springs of the River Fleet, and are open to adults and children over the age of eight. Day tickets cost £2.
River Stour, Kent
The wide River Stour winds through historic Canterbury and the Stodmarsh nature reserve, before leading to a secretive woodland lake. Jump in from the mooring platform located next door to the local pub, The Fordwich Arms, or set up for the day on the bank. The water is clear enough to spot fish as you float down the river, but be wary of the rocks which can be slippery underfoot.
Faerie Pools, Isle Of Skye
The Faerie Pools, located on the River Brittle, are just one of many natural wonders that can be found on the Isle of Skye. Set deep in the countryside, and flanked by rocky walls and tumbling grass ledges, visitors often cool off in the pool’s waterfall that flows from the Cuillin Mountains or even go snorkelling. Work up a sweat by embarking on the 2.5km walk around the pool’s heathland before heading into the water.
Outney Common, Suffolk
Locals flock to Outney Common all year round, thanks to its plethora of wildlife and walking routes. The clear and clean River Waveney loops around the common, with plenty of grassy banks that make for great diving ledges, as well as overhanging trees providing adequate shade for swimmers. Canoes are also available for those keen to paddle down the river.
River Ouse, East Sussex
Sussex is home to plenty of wild swimming spots, but the River Ouse is a little known beauty. Located just two miles outside of the charming Lewes, this is a great spot for families. Adults can be found relaxing on the river banks, while rope swings guarantee hours of additional fun for kids. Visitors can also rent a row boat from the nearby Anchor Inn.
Galleny Force, Lake District
Nicknamed The Fairy Glen by locals, this set of magical plunge pools and deep gorges sees plenty of visitors each year. Dramatic and atmospheric, head to Galleny Force in the summer when the water has warmed up and the ancient rowan trees offer enough shade from the sunshine. Take the short walk to the lower pools or climb up to the larger, shallow lagoon, where the water is clear enough for snorkelling.
DISCLAIMER: We endeavour to always credit the correct original source of every image we use. If you think a credit may be incorrect, please contact us at email@example.com.