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22 2013

Revealed – Ten of the world’s most amazing natural swimming pools

According to reports this week, the mercury is set to rise again just in time for the bank holiday weekend. As the summer hots up again, many of us will dream of basking in the sun, then cooling off in a swimming pool or taking a dip in the sea. This list of natural swimming spots all over the world, including a pool overlooking a 100ft drop at Victoria Falls and a lagoon with bath-like temperature mineral-packed water in Iceland are sure to inspire while we eagerly await the return of the summer sun*


Devils Pool, Victoria Falls, Zambia – Perched on the edge of the Victoria Falls in Livingstone, Zambia, Devils Pool is a natural pool created each year at the fringes of the Falls, when the dry season reduces water levels. Travellers can enjoy amazing views of the mile-wide falls and the somewhat nail-biting 100ft drop to the bottom. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “I struggle to think of another place in the world where you have the opportunity to sit literally on the edge of a water fall of such calibre like Victoria Falls.”


Devils pool, Victoria Falls


Eco-Arqueological Park Ik Kil, Chichen Itza, Mexico – The Ik Kil at Chichen Itza’s Eco-Arqueological Park is a cenote – a deep natural pit which has resulted from the collapse of limestone bedrock which has then exposed the groundwater beneath. Travellers can access the forty-metre deep Ik Kil which is twenty-six metres below ground level, via a carved stairway down to a swimming platform. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “The water was cool and clear and the little fish are so sweet swimming around you. The depth below may freak out the less experienced swimmer but it makes jumping from the platforms much safer because you aren’t going to hit the bottom no matter how hard you try!”


Eco-Arqueological Park Ik Kil_2


Havasu Falls, Grand Canyon, Arizona, US – A waterfall located in the Grand Canyon, the Havasu Falls cascade into a large pool. The vivid blue-green colour of the water is caused by the high concentration of calcium carbonate. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “Nothing compares to how beautiful and how much fun Havasu was. If you are an adventurous spirit and like to cliff jump this is the place for you.”




To Sua Ocean Trench, Lotofaga, SamoaOtherwise translated as ‘big hole’ To Sua is a thirty-metre deep ocean trench which has been converted into a large swimming pool accessible by ladder. Located in the Lotofaga village the pool is surrounded with beautiful and colorful gardens. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “An absolutely breathtaking experience. The grounds are well set out, great to walk around and just sit and relax. The views along the coast and blowholes are awesome and the trench from above was just amazing.”


To Sua Ocean Trench


Kuang Si Falls, Luang Prabang, Laos – Located just south of Luang Prabang, the Kuang Si Falls is a three-tier waterfall which starts on top of a steep hilltop, feeding into shallow pools. The smaller falls and pools lead into one main fall which cascades sixty metres. At the very bottom of the falls there are several blue pools open for swimming and visitors can also enjoy a spot of lunch afterwards on the picnic benches dotted around the park and falls. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “Beautiful and spectacular falls, and great for swimming. Do make sure you walk all the way up to the main waterfall, before taking a swim in the lower pools!”




Blue Lagoon, Grindavik, Iceland – Located in a lava field in Grindavík, the Blue Lagoon has warm waters averaging temperatures of 37-39°C and is rich in minerals which are thought to have healing effects. The lagoon is fed by the water output of the nearby geothermal power plant Svartsengi from a mile below the earth’s surface. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “It was absolutely breathtaking. It’s relaxing and wonderful and the surrounding landscape is so alien… It really blows your mind as you’ll have never seen anything like it. Make it a stop, it’s worth it.”




Enchanted River, Mindanao, Philippines – The Hinatuan River, which is also referred to as the ‘Enchanted River’ by locals because the water seems to magically flow without any source, is a salt-water river which flows from a fifty feet deep spring. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “The deep blue, cold and fresh water is so inviting. The water is so clear and clean you just want to soak in it all day. It is like a huge natural aquarium because of the different species of fish you can see.”




Pamukkale Thermal Pools, Turkey – Pamukkale translates as cotton castle in Turkish and refers to the white castle-like cascades of the Pamukkale Thermal Pools. It is a mountain of mineral baths formed over thousands of years by rich thermal springs. The water, that is thought to have healing properties, contains mainly calcium salts and carbon-dioxide. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “An experience like no other.., walking bare foot up through the hot springs and bathing in the natural pools…and then discovering the ancient city perched at the top of the hill. Wow!”




Las Grietas, Puerto Ayora, Ecuador – Las Grietas is a canyon formed of two walls which have been created by lava. Both fresh and sea water flow into this pool and temperatures can vary between 18 and 20 º C – ideal for cooling off. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “This was a tough walk, but the swimming and diving were worth it! The water was really refreshing and the diving was fun, even if I did more watching than actual jumping.”




Litchfield National Park, Batchelor, Northern Territory, Australia – Litchfield National Park is a 1500-sq-km park and borders most of the Tabletop range – a sandstone plateau surrounded by cliffs. It’s from this plateau that waterfalls cascade and feed into the many pools that are croc-free and ideal for swimming. One TripAdvisor traveller commented, “If you have never visited, the main attractions Wangi Falls, Florence Falls and Buley Rockhole are all wonderful places to swim, explore and picnic.”



Categories: Travel Inspiration, Travellers’ Choice, TripAdvisor News

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