Sydney Ocean Pools

Sydney is famous for its beaches but the city also has a number of beautiful, historic ocean pools. These offer swimmers a safe environment away from strong waves, shark attacks and the possibility of pollution. They’re also a great alternative for people who haven’t mastered the art of ocean swimming. But what exactly are these ocean pools and why were they built?

The first ever official ocean pool in Australia opened in 1915 at Bondi Beach. It was a place where both recreational and competitive swimmers could practise without worrying about dangerous currents or rips. The ocean pool was walled off from the surf, making it safer and easier to swim in. There was also a changing room and cafe where swimmers could have a cup of tea or coffee and a snack before returning to the water.

Over the years many other ocean pools were built around Sydney. The most notable is Icebergs, which has been open for over 100 years and is one of the most photographed swimming pools in the world. It’s a great place to stretch out and swim laps in the 50m pool or just hang out on the deck with a drink enjoying the stunning views of Bondi Beach. The only downside to this iconic Sydney pool is that there are no lifeguards on duty so you have to be careful in the rough surf and make sure you swim in between the red and yellow flags.

Another Sydney pool with a long history of swimming excellence is Heffron, which was renamed in 2000 in honour of Aussie long-distance swimmer Des Renford who holds the record for the most swims across the English Channel with 19. Heffron is a popular training venue for Olympic-calibre swimmers and has a kids’ splash and play pool as well as lap pools. The aquatic centre is a popular choice for families and offers swim lessons for children and adults.

One of the most beautiful Sydney pools is Clovelly Rock Pool, located on the southern end of Coogee Beach along the Southern Coastal Walk. It’s a wonderful spot to take the family for a swim and then enjoy a bbq with friends. It’s also one of the few pools where dogs are allowed so bring your furry friend too.

As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to grip the country, many people are looking for safe ways to get exercise and enjoy the sunshine. This has seen a huge rise in the use of ocean and outdoor pools, with more and more people turning to swimming instead of the gym. Clover Moore, the Lord Mayor of Sydney, has even floated the idea of turning part of the harbour into a series of free ocean swimming pools to help people stay healthy and have fun.