Ocean Baths / Rock Pools

Aslings Beach Rock Pool – Eden, NSW 2551

My experience in the pool A swim among the fish in the clear waters of Aslings Beach Rock Pool at Eden started our day off perfectly, with an audience of black crabs looking on from every wall and crevice along the sides of the pool. This must be one of my favourite ocean pools yet, for the setting as much as the pool itself. As NSW ocean pools go, Aslings Beach rock pool is a relative newbie, having been built only in the 1960s. It doesn’t always get the best reviews, either from locals Read more [...]

Thompson’s Point Baths – Eden, NSW 2551

My experience in the pool We'd never have found Thompson's Point Baths in Eden on the NSW Sapphire Coast without the help of this site. Well, actually, local gent Rob Whiter found me via my ABC Radio interviews last year and got in touch to make sure I didn't miss his hidden gem, which was the first rock pool in Eden - built very early in the 20th century - but fallen largely into disuse since the old wooden ramps that used to link it to the main cliff tops crumbled away with termite infestation Read more [...]

Bronte Bogey Hole – Bronte, NSW 2024

My experience in the pool Bronte Bogey Hole has always taken second place on my previous visits to the area because Bronte Rock Pool is one of my favourites of all the NSW ocean pools. But I needed to have a swim in the bogey hole one day to complete my coastal quest. I’d partly shied away from trying to swim in the bogey hole because I couldn’t work out exactly where the swimming area actually was. But my friend, and fellow swimming blogger, Therese put me right when we met last weekend: Read more [...]

McIver’s Baths – Coogee, NSW 2034

Sydney's women-only rock pool is named after Rose McIver, who was founder of Randwick & Coogee Ladies Swim Club in 1922. My experience in the pool This wasn't of course 'my experience in the pool' - fortunately my wife was able to jump in and give her impressions of swimming at McIver's Baths. Two female friends joined me, and the day we visited there was quite a swell, with waves crashing over into the pool, and a bit of a ‘washing machine’ effect in the baths.  One Read more [...]

Norah Head Rock Pool – Norah Head, NSW 2263

Norah Head lighthouse was the last staffed lighthouse along the NSW coast. My experience in the pool Norah Head rock pool has to be my favourite of the many ring of stones rock pools along the NSW Central Coast. Catch it on the right tide in sunny weather, as I did in mid December 2016 and it is a great spot to play safely in the waves. Norah Head is probably best at high tide, when you can easily manage a few strokes of freestyle in between the waves and unlike the other ring of rocks Read more [...]

Avoca Beach Rock Pool – Avoca Beach, NSW 2251

Avoca is an Irish name meaning 'great estuary'. My experience in the pool Avoca Beach rock pool is really more of a wading pool than a swimming pool, to be honest. Even at high tide, the water barely gets above my thigh level even on a big wave, with the depth most of the time hovering around my knees. On a previous visit - in winter and to visit the fabulous cinema right by the beach here - a lifeguard told me the rock pool here is really more for kids to play safely in the water and Read more [...]

The Blue Pool – Bermagui, NSW 2546

Some say 'Bermagui' comes from an Aboriginal word meaning canoe with paddles. My experience in the pool Bermagui’s Blue Pool is every bit as special as everyone told me it would be. It sits out on the rock face, way further south than most of the other NSW ocean pools, and although it was more green than blue, it was a pure delight on a warm December morning. I took a bit of a gamble on the weather because when I left my own home 3 hours and more north of Bermagui, it was grey and Read more [...]

South Maroubra Rock Pools – South Maroubra NSW 2035

My experience in the pool You've got to pick the right tide to go for a swim at South Maroubra's ring of stones rock pool. I managed it on my third visit, though the earlier attempts were not a waste of time as they helped me find the right spot when I did come back at high tide. Basically, at low tide, you have the best views of exactly where this rock pool is, and can visualise where you might swim when the water is deeper, but on that low tide you'll be lucky if you can do more than Read more [...]

Copacabana Rock Pool – Copacabana, NSW 2251

Named after the beach in Brazil... My experience in the pool The first time we pitched up at Copacabana Beach was on a grey Sunday morning after attending an outdoor concert in Singleton, further up the central coast in the Hunter Valley. Funnily enough one of the singers in that concert was from Copacabana and she had mentioned the place in her intro, so we were quite excited to find the place the next morning. Sadly, neither the weather nor the tides were that kind to us. It was a Read more [...]

Terrigal Rock Pool – Terrigal, NSW 2260

Named for an Aboriginal word meaning 'place of little birds' My experience in the pool I'd read somewhere that the best time to come to Terrigal rock pool was around high tide, so we checked our tide times and the weather forecasts before heading up the coast from Kiama for a day trip to the Central Coast. When we got to Terrigal it was mid-morning on a warm Saturday at the end of May, with some sort of surf carnival going on to add a bit of colour on the beach itself. The rock pool Read more [...]