Pool Reviews

Macquarie University Sport & Aquatic Centre – NSW 2109

My experience in the pool Swimming at Macquarie University Aquatic Centre was a bit like coming home from one of those holidays when you haven't had a decent coffee for two weeks (more on the coffee at Macquarie University later, by the way). My first chance in about six weeks to stretch out and do laps in a 50m outdoor pool so it was bound to feel good. The Olympic pool at Macquarie Uni is a classic Australian outdoor pool, with gum trees down at one end and on the slope just beside Read more [...]

Little Street Baths – Forster, NSW 2428

My experience in the pool The Little Street Baths in Forster are a funny spot. With such a fabulous ocean pool just ten minutes' walk away, why would anyone ever want to swim in these baths, you might think? I like the idea of netted swimming enclosures in Sydney along the George's River or Port Hacking when locals might feel it's just a bit too far to get to the beach and swim in a real rock pool, but here at Little Street in Forster, it really is close to the town itself. Still, I Read more [...]

Tuncurry Rockpool – Tuncurry, NSW 2428

Tuncurry means 'plenty of fish' in local Aboriginal language My experience in the pool Tuncurry Rockpool would not count as a rock pool in most people's definitions of the term. There are no rocks anywhere, unless you count the material used to build the harbour wall, and it is more a netted beach than a pool as such. Still, for my ocean pools site, which has now expanded into any outdoor swimming spot (as long as it's safe or protected), Tuncurry Rockpool counts. It is a funny place, Read more [...]

Black Head Ocean Baths – NSW 2430

My experience in the pool Black Head Ocean Baths ticked all my boxes. The pool is nearer 30m than 50m but that's a good enough lap length, and with the surf pounding just beyond the pool wall, a pod of dolphins darting about in the bay near the pool, a friendly local to talk to, and best of all a local community fully behind the preservation of their fantastic facility, putting on time, money and labour to keep it going. So go to Black Head Ocean Baths and put a donation in the box by the Read more [...]

Auburn Aquatic Centre (Ruth Everuss) – Lidcombe, NSW 2141

Auburn was named after a village in England that features in an 18th century poem. My experience in the pool The Auburn Swim Centre, whose official name is the Ruth Everuss Aquatic Centre, only reopened in April 2017 after major refurbishment. It was quiet here on a chilly May morning, but the sun was bright and the outdoor Olympic pool looked very inviting, especially with only one other swimmer doing laps when I arrived. The old tiles mentioned and loved by my fellow swim blogger Read more [...]

Forster Ocean Baths – Forster, NSW 2428

Forster is named after a 19th century NSW Premier. My experience in the pool Forster Ocean Baths are an absolute delight. If you're heading north, as I am on this quest to swim in all the NSW outdoor swimming enclosures, make the most of Forster because there aren't many more genuine ocean pools between here and the Queensland border. Forster Baths must have been all the more amazing when they were first built, when they had tea gardens, a dance hall and, of all things, a casino, attached Read more [...]

Angelo Anestis Aquatic Centre – Bexley, NSW 2207

Bexley was named after the south-east London borough of the same name My experience in the pool I like the new aquatic centre in Bexley, not far from Hurstville in Sydney's south. It's named after the local councillor who apparently pushed for a super, modern swimming complex to be built, but very sadly, the lady at reception told me, Angelo Anestis passed away just a few months before the new centre opened its doors again in January 2017. It's still possible to see the sign Read more [...]

Clifton Gardens Baths – Chowder Bay – NSW 2088

My experience in the pool I was the only one swimming at Clifton Gardens Baths in Chowder Bay on a sunny but chilly May morning. Well, unless you count the heron that kept bobbing up and down in the water around the shark net, or the school of pretty big fish - about 50cm long I'd guess - darting about around me in the water. Oh, and the scuba divers in their thick suits just outside the baths themselves. The air temperature might have been a brisk 13C or so but the water was warm, probably Read more [...]

Prize for artwork on Ocean Pools

There is a $1,000 prize up for grabs, organised by the people who run the excellent All Into Ocean Pools website. Deadline for entries is 31 May, so only a few days left to get your favourite ocean pool painting or photo, or any other visual media, and submit it for the 2017 Sheridan Evans award. I just submitted an entry which took less than two minutes to upload so if you share our love of ocean pools, or just have an image of your favourite, why not have a go? Here's details of who Read more [...]

Oatley Bay Baths – Oatley, NSW 2223

Oatley was named after a convict clockmaker - check out the commemorative clock tower in the village. My experience in the pool The kookaburras started chuckling as soon as we entered Oatley Pleasure Grounds and were in full cackling mode by the time we reached the edge of the water at Oatley Bay Baths. As we looked at the uninviting murky water and the cold breeze blew in from the river, we wondered if they were laughing at us for even thinking of having a dip in a pool where nobody seems Read more [...]