Summer is here, and we all like to have a refreshing dip to escape from the scorching heat, but where is the best place to go for a swim? Here is a list of the top 10 weird and wonderful swimming pools across the globe.
1 Infinity pool in Singapore at Marina Bay Sands resort:
Kicking off this list is the massive 150m Infinity Pool on the 57th floor of the Marina Bay Sands resort which is three times the size of an Olympic swimming pool. Don’t look down though. At 198m high, this pool can turn your relaxing dip into the scariest swim of your life.
Can you swim there? Sadly, guests only.
2 Gold Energy Pool at St. Regis in Lhasa, Tibet:
This swimming (or is that blinging?!) pool, which is lined with thousands of golden tiles, looks like the kind of place you would see P. Diddy and Jay-Z lounging in. Children under 12 are not allowed unaccompanied, and loud, disruptive activities such as diving and splashing, are strictly off limits as they might undermine Zen pool’s Zen vibe. Swimming laps is frowned upon, so if you ever make it there expect to spend your hour or so making star shapes and contemplating the universe.
Can you swim there? Guests only. They obviously can’t run the risk of the hoi-polloi trying to pinch a golden tile or two.
3 Golden Nugget Pool at The Golden Nugget Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada:
You could pretty much write a book about Vegas and its opulent swimming pools. The Corinthian columns which tower over you at Caeasars Palace are amazing as is Nevada’s only beach at the Mandalay Bay. This pool has even featured in films and was once the favoured haunt of a certain Ringo Starr. For me though The Tank at The Golden Nugget stands out as you get the scare of your life as you slide through as tank filled with sharks and 300 other sea creatures. Then dry off and play blackjack around the pool.
Can you swim there? Guests and sharks only.
4 Giola Lagoon, natural pool near Astris on Thassos in the Greek Islands:
Swimming in this pool isn’t just a pleasant dip, but an adventure. Searching for this remote pool carved into rock can take hours. And when you get there jumping off rocks up to 8m high into this warm lake, cut off from the sea, is easy and fun. Climbing up the ultra slippery flat rocks to the top again is another matter. If you don’t have the courage to jump you can simply lounge in the pool.
Can you swim there? Yes, free to swim, hard to get to.
5 Blue Lagoon Geothermal Resort pool in Grindavík , Iceland:
This milky lagoon, sited a short-ish drive from Reykjavik isn’t just an interesting experience, but is also apparently good for your health too. The water, which is part seawater and freshwater, originates from 2,000m below the surface, at extreme temperatures. By the time it reaches the lagoon it is a lush 38°C even in the middle of an arctic winter. The lagoon gets its colour naturally from silica, algae and minerals. The water is actually white, but is tinged blue by the Sun, and if you were to pour some of the water in a glass it would look like milk. A must have experience for anyone who visits Iceland.
Can you swim there? Pay entrance for the spa.
6 Shaw House, Vancouver:
This privately owned pool stretches all the way across the west side of the house. It is not only perfect for laps, but also refracts light into the rooms of the house such as the dining room. It also traverses above the entrance and on a sunny day provides a dreamlike aqueous light pattern on the whole entrance area. Swimming in this pool would, however, require either buying the house or breaking into it.
Can you swim there? No.
7 Devil’s Pool on Victoria Falls, Zambia:
Fancy a swim a bit more challenging than the one at your local Lido? This naturally made pool is found on the very edge of Victoria Falls in Zambia is one of the most dangerous pools ever. For starters it is only accessible in the months between September and December, when the water level is safe enough and water current is minimal. And then there is the small matter of that drop. Courageous swimmers have taken pictures whilst lying across the edge of the fall, however given that there have been several deaths doing this you might prefer to give it a miss. If you are not confident enough in your swimming skills, you can pull yourself to the pool using a wire from the shore on the side.
Can you swim there? Yes, but you must book in advance with small groups of up to 16 people.
8 The San Alfonso del Mar Seawater Pool in Algarrobo, Chile:
Now this is more like it. Apparently the world’s largest pool the San Alfonso is not only reserved for swimmers, but you can also find small sailing boats and kayaks on it. It measures 1km in length and holds 66million gallons of water at a pleasant temperature of 26°C. It also features floating trampolines. Located on the country’s pacific coast. Not a single person can be seen on the beach dwarfed by the pool next to it.
Can you swim there? Guests go free, non-guests have to pay admission.
9 Mansion in Boulder City, Nevada:
Tired of waiting in queues with screaming children at waterparks? Well why not buy a mansion in Nevada worth $3million? This mansion has its own diving pool, lazy river, waterfall and numerous secret grottos. The estate copies an old western aesthetic, with an old saloon next to the pool to sit and dry in. This Disneyesque 1.5 acre estate is the perfect summer hangout.
Can you swim there? No. Unless you have a spare $3million.
10 Beer Pool at The Starkenberg brewery in Tarrenz, Austria:
Tired of trying to wash all your problems and stress down your throat with a beer? Well at the Starkenberg brewery you can literally bathe it in. There they fill up their tubs with approximately 12,000 litres of beer for you to soak in and you relax knowing that a dip in beer has surprising health benefits such as ‘ensuring supple skin’. The perfect hangover cure? Possibly.
Can you swim there? Yes, reserve in advance for up to 7 people per pool.
images via www.flickr.com, www.lifebuzz.com, www.homesoftherich.net, www.gizmodo.com
By Harry Finegold | July 15th, 2014