Summer is a beautiful time of the year: beaches are buzzing, neighbors are hosting weekend barbecues, and the hot sun makes everything look even more alive and gleaming. With tropical storms and heat waves, summer also brings with it a natural, refreshing, exhilarating way to cool off. If you’re tired of stale air conditioning or typical summer activities, some of the most beautiful swimming holes around the world are just waiting for you!
Between azure, blue waters and spontaneous mountain views, these swimming holes are fresh-water, natural jewels. Their raw beauty truly shows us the powers of nature and will be an incredible experience when you travel to one of them. Here are 11 of the world’s most extraordinary swimming holes:
Hierve el Agua, Oaxaca, Mexico
The Hierve el Agua pools in Oaxaca, Mexico, are not only a popular travel site, but also a geological, natural wonder. In Spanish, “hierve” means “to boil.” So, if you travel to Mexico, you’ll probably be expecting to see a beautiful, boiling swimming hole. But the Hierve el Agua actually appears frozen as its green, blue, yellow-tinted waters cascade down the mountain side. While the waterfalls are white, two mineral pools sit at the edge of the cliff, giving you an extraordinary view of the raw landscape straight ahead.
Imagine swimming in these Mexican mineral waters with a view that looks like it directly came out of a fairytale. Thousands of people travel to Mexico to enjoy a dip to beat the summer heat. Travel here to see one of nature’s most pristine creations!
Giola Natural Pool, Thassos Island, Greece
The Giola Natural Pool in Greece should definitely be one of the places you travel to in your lifetime. The Giola is a beautiful sea lagoon carved in rocks near the Astris village. As its rocks are like steps, it’s easy to get down to the azure, crystal-clear waters below or take a swim in the Aegean Sea next door. Either way, you’ll have the chance to experience a unique part of nature.
It’s said that this seaside gem is quite a trek. But adventurers, hikers and nature lovers will be rewarded with an incredible gorgeous views of the sea and sun. There isn’t any shade so pack plenty of water, a hat, and sunscreen. Most of all, have a blast when you travel to this natural swimming hole!
Devil’s Pool, Victoria Falls, Zambia
The Devil’s Pool near Victoria Falls in Zambia is perfect for dare-devils. From your hotel, you can choose to go on a boat ride that speeds you through the Zambezi River, enjoying the wind in your hair and the rush of the sea current as a captain navigates his way through narrow channels. It’s an exhilarating experience to swim on the edges of the world with a backdrop of natural beauty in your view. Come to Zambia to get your wild adventure started!
It requires a rocky walk and swim to reach the natural pool. If you’re fearless and like the thrill of adrenaline, then you can jump into the waters to feel the gushing forces of the Zambezi river. The lips of the rocks will bring you to a stop, very close to a 100 ft fall. Expert travel guides will also be there to ensure your safety. I guess that’s why they call it the Devil’s Pool! Take a leap of courage and travel to this natural wonder in Zambia!
Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye, Scotland
Near the Carbost village on the Isle of Skye, you can embark on a picture-perfect walk from Glen Brittle toward the Fairy Pools. It’s an incredibly popular spot for photography lovers and hikers. The Fairy Pools are easily one of the most magical places in Scotland. With waters so clear, it’s ideal for any adventure junkie who dares to experience its icy waters. Who doesn’t love a refreshing swim in the most beautiful place on Earth?
What looks like a page out of Scottish mythical tales, the Fairy Pools might be bone-chillingly cold, but their almost supernatural personality has made them one of Scotland’s most enduring and loved natural wonders as they look like a part of a Tolkien novel landscape. Travel to Scotland to see for yourself!
Laguna el Dudu, Cabrera, Dominican Republic
The blue lagoon in the Dominican Republic is an exciting and mostly unknown attraction on the north coast of the region. Unlike other swimming holes where you can relatively easily get down to the water, the Laguna el Dudu asks you to jump 32 feet. If you have a fear of heights, it might be difficult to take a leap of faith. Or, I’ll let you in on a little secret: there are stairs on the sides of the cliffs to reach the water. So, travel to the Dominican Republic to relax in this natural swimming hole!
Grotta della Poesia, Roca Vecchia, Italy
Also known as the “Caves of Poetry,” this natural swimming hole in Roca Vecchia, Italy isn’t the only jewel of the country, but it’s certainly one of the best. Between archaeological sites and historical places, you’ll find this incredible natural beauty that has a rocky coastline with pristine beach coves, caves, and crisp waters. It’s a 100 foot-wide sinkhole at the edge of the sea and has been a favorite swimming spot for travel lovers for years.
Its name comes from stories about a princess who loved the Grotta della Poesia, a woman who had poets write about her at this spot. You can also scuba dive, rent a boat, or just swim. Travel to Italy for an amazing time at the Caves of Poetry!
Havasu Falls, Arizona, United States
Havasu Falls in Arizona is a major travel destination for hikers who are dying to see its blue-green waterfalls. The Grand Canyon attracts over 5 million tourists every single year. But, tucked away 35-miles in the canyon lies this gorgeous natural wonder. These falls require a 10-mile hike each way to get to the waterfalls of Havasupai in the Supai Village. If you want to trek the way, the views from the 100-foot waterfall are extraordinarily breathtaking.
With waters reaching nearly 75 degrees, the Havasu Falls are perfect for swimming and for experiencing nature at its most pure. It’s a world-renowned hiking spot. So, while you’re on your journey of exploring the Grand Canyon, make sure to stop by (or jump into) this priceless swimming hole in Arizona! You won’t regret it!
Las Grietas, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Las Grietas is the perfect way to experience the beauty and the wildlife of the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador. As you hike through a forest of cacti, over lava rock formations, and through the wilderness, you’ll come across one of the most unique swimming holes in the country. It’s a series of volcanic crevices made during the cooling of molten lava and is literally called “The Cracks.” Las Grietas in the Galapagos Islands will have you walking in the footsteps of Darwin. Travel to Ecuador to swim in the stunning waters of Las Grietas!
Marble Caves, Patagonia, Chile
With more than 6,000 years in the making, Chile features tunnels and pillars created in monoliths of marble. The caves are on a peninsula of stunning marble structures. They’re best seen in the morning when it’s sunny and bright. These azure-blue cavern walls border and reflect Lake General Carrera, a remote glacial body of water that spans the Chile-Argentina border, and are carved into the Patagonian Andes.
The marble caves are only accessible by boat tours or rented kayaks so make sure to schedule one of the two if you plan to travel to this natural wonder. If you’re ever in Chile, seeing these gorgeous marble caves are a definite for your nature travel must-dos!
A Firveda, Galicia, Spain
Galicia is where you find the beautiful A Firveda. With lush, rolling hills woven through crystalline rivers, Galicia is known as a country of sand rivers. Gushing waterfalls and river beaches that join miles of coastline make this gorgeous region a swimmers’ paradise and summer haven. While you’re driving along mountain roads, hiking up hillsides, and making your way through river valleys and tourist centers, A Firveda is a perfect way to cool off.
Tucked away in the foothills of Spain, A Firveda is brimming with picturesque views. This Instagram-worthy destination will quickly find its way to the top of your travel list. Travel to Spain for an incredible adventure at one of the most beautiful natural swimming holes in the world!