Whilst you might argue we are a bit late to the wild swimming party, we thought a blog about what seems to be this office’s most currently talked-about sport was in order.
Plus, if you start your wild swimming research, like us, you’ll fall down an internet rabbit hole full of such incredible pictures and so much nature-led joyful inspiration you’ll want to strip off (or don a wet suit) and head for water immediately.
Before we list our top fav wild swimming across England and Wales it would be remiss of us not to direct us to you to the experts who have some excellent safety advice for you before you take the plunge! wildswimming.co.uk say that bad behaviours are more dangerous than most locations, so swim but swim with some caution and be well researched on where you are swimming. They advise that you know your swimming limits before you enter any water and to never swim alone. Check their excellent safety list for a quick reminder on all their do’s and wild swimming don’ts.
So why swim wild? There are many reasons why getting back to nature is good for you and yours, the vitamin D, the boost to your mental health, the improved blood pressure. And we all know that taking physical activity is excellent for your mind, body and spirit too. But if you don’t believe us, then take note from the National Trust who are on a mission to ‘reconnect a generation of children with nature and the outdoors through nature-related activities for kids’ and who advocate sea swimming as something ‘you’ll never forget’. Who doesn’t remember wave jumping on their last beach trip?! And if it’s good enough for the kids…
So, here’s our list of 5 top Wild Swimming locations that are on our must-do list whilst the weather is warm enough….
- Hampstead Heath Ladies Pond, with lifeguards year around and plenty of sunbathing spots, for the ladies only, this makes for a great trip out and is firmly on many girl’s bucket list. Super trendy location to kick-start your wild swimming.
- River Thames, Pangbourne. On the edge of The Chilterns this stretch of the River Thames of beautifully clear water is a wild swimming fav and can be easily reached by train in to Pangbourne and a short walk. Need another excuse? A short distance up the river is Goring-on-Thames a chocolate box village with pretty pubs ready to help you celebrate your bravery, with beers and lunches.
- Bodmin Parkway. As if we needed another excuse to visit Cornwall…but here’s one anyway. On the edge of the Llanhydrock Estate is this beautiful woody spot to while away a few hours. Just look for the original driveway to the house.
- Tellisford, near Frome. This is a favourite local spot for our Bath based team and this idyllic river swim has some excellent spots deep enough for some serious jumping in.
- Sandford Parks Lido, Cheltenham. For those not quite ready for the full wild swimming experience and who want to build their alfresco swimming experience then head to this wonderful art deco lido.