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Swimming Pools to Inspire a Dip, and a Trip?

Cool Pools Around the World to Inspire Your Backyard Paradise

In past posts we’ve talked about different hot tubs around the world. Today we’re going to get a little inspiration for swimming pools. You might not be able to (or want to) replicate everything that is here…but it is fun to see what other pools are like and get some ideas to incorporate back home.

infinity swimming pool in Bali jungle

The Santa Cruz County flora may be a bit different than the jungles of Bali, Indonesia, but this gorgeous infinity pool can still provide a lot of fantastic ideas for your own swimming pool.

This infinity pool is only open to the guests of the Hanging Gardens hotel. Although you can’t see it from this photo, this is actually only one of 2 layers in the pool!

Here you might see a monkey swinging from the trees as you float around and cool off. Back at home you might need to have a monkey sculpture hanging around!

swimming pool at the Australian ocean

From the tropics of Bali we head to the cold waters of Sydney, Australia for our next stunning pool.

This outdoor pool right at the edge of the ocean is billed as “the only licensed winter swimming club in the world.”

Built in 1929 for local lifeguards–specifically so they could stay in shape over the winter. The pool is colder than the ocean. And it is a salt water pool–at least on roughs days, high tides splash over the wall as swimmers take their laps!

We may have Polar Bear clubs in California, but our membership requirements aren’t as tough. To become an official Bondi Icebergs Club member, you have to swim three Sundays each winter month, and at least 75 times over five years.

huge swimming pool in Chile

Want a pool that is a bit larger–and maybe not so cold? How about this monster in Santiago, Chile?

The pool at Chile’s San Alfonso del Mar resort west of Santiago, was, until 2015, the world’s largest.

Not only can you swim here, you can take a paddle boat out–and even sailboats!

The crystal-clear pool, essentially a man-made lagoon, has a 20-acre footprint filled with 66 million gallons of water filtered from the Pacific Ocean. The deep end could fit an 11-story building.

Maybe a bit more water than you want in drought prone California, but one can dream, right?

iceland swimming pool

A little smaller scale and more rustic. This pool is Seljavallalaug, Iceland (just don’t ask me to pronounce it) is 82 feet long.

This pool is built into the side of a mountain. Now that is something we can use for inspiration in Santa Cruz County!

Be prepared for a hike if you plan to visit. The pool is open to the public, but it takes a half hour rocky hike through a river valley to reach!

This is Iceland’s oldest outdoor geothermal pool, Iceland’s oldest. It was built in 1923 to teach locals how to swim.

So few people–locals or tourists–visit, you may have a wild swim (watch the algae), with its views of snowy mountains, all to yourself.

hearst castle calif swimming pool

A little closer to home is this pool at Hearst Castle in San Simeon–just down the road a bit.

Actually this is not just one pool, but two.

William Randolph Hearst and architect Julia Morgan in 1924 began working on this pair of pools. 12 years later, they were done.

Although leaks caused the massive outdoor Neptune pool to be closed, the extravagantly-tiled indoor Roman Pool is still a tour stop. It’s meant to evoke an ancient Roman bath, and features eight statues of Roman and Greek gods and athletes.

So now you’ve had a little awe-inspiration. Let us know if you are going to visit one of these beauties or if you find a way to translate a little of it into your Santa Cruz swimming pool!


See more incredible swimming pools around the world in this article by National Geographic.

Photo credits:

Bali, Indonesia infinity pool photograph courtesy of Hanging Gardens of Bali

Sydney, Australia ocean side pool Photograph by Sydney Photographer, Alamy Stock Photo

Santiago, Chile huge pool Photograph by Hemis, Alamy Stock Photo

Seljavallalaug, Iceland swimming pool Photograph by Anna Gorin, Getty Images

Hearst Castle pool Photograph by Melvyn Longhurst, Alamy Stock Photo