Newcastle Ocean Baths – NSW 2300

They don’t rent out towels, costumes or handkerchiefs anymore like they used to when these pools first opened in 1922. My experience in the pool I love everything about this place, from the grand Ocean Baths entrance in art deco style, through to the viewing ramp, which looks out over the main 50m pool and the enormous leisure pool next to it. I hadn’t had a decent workout in a 50m pool for a week or two, so spent all my time doing joyous laps in that section rather testing out the Read more [...]

Ross Jones Memorial Pool – Coogee, NSW 2034

Long before the rock pool was built, Coogee Beach had an English-style pier, though it only lasted six years before a storm destroyed it. My experience in the pool There was bright sunshine over Coogee when I arrived mid-morning for my dip in this delightful pool. It’s only a short pool – about 17m probably, or maybe even less – but when the sun is blasting down and the sea is glittering all around, getting into a pool like this is one of life’s pure pleasures. I rather like Read more [...]

Berkeley Swimming Centre – Illawarra, NSW 2506

Named after an estate in Gloucestershire My experience in the pool I really enjoyed myself in this pool. I’m not sure how many Poms they get in here because the lifeguard kept me chatting about Lancashire and Yorkshire connections for about 15 minutes before I could actually start my laps. When I began my swim, I was sharing the entire Olympic pool with just one seagull, though he (or she) was joined by two others as I ploughed up and down my lane. Mind you, I say lanes, but there Read more [...]

Macmasters Beach Rock Pool – NSW 2251

Named after the Scotsman who first settled here in 1855, though nobody seems to know where in Scotland he came from… My experience in the pool It was a cloudy day in midweek just after the sweltering hot holiday weekend in October, which might explain why the place was deserted apart from the handful of surfers who, I quickly realised, would glide past the pool on a wave and then walk back along the coast path and past the pool again before stepping across the rocks to rejoin their surfing Read more [...]

South Curl Curl Rock Pool – NSW 2096

The name possibly comes from an Aboriginal phrase meaning ‘river of life’ My experience in the pool I was here on a bright, sunny morning in early October when you can almost feel the transition from spring to summer (and forecasts were for 30C the next day). The water was already a lovely temperature – no signs up, but I was guessing over 20C for my swim, making we wish I’d done the switch back to ocean pools a few weeks ago rather than waiting till now. This is a lovely pool, Read more [...]

Western Suburbs Pool – Unanderra, NSW 2526

Aboriginal word for junction of two creeks My experience in the pool I initially came here when I didn’t know I would be blogging also about freshwater open air pools, so didn’t take any notes. But I do remember being delighted by the views of the bush-covered mountains in the distance behind the pool, and relishing the swim even more because these excellent facilities – with Olympic Pool, 25m pool and toddlers pool – are totally free to use. Hats off to Wollongong Council for this. I Read more [...]