When you’re ready to tackle an adventure beyond your own backyard, hop in your car, crank the AC and motor to one of these Texas swimming spots. Once you finally peel yourself from your seat, escape the Lone Star State’s heat with a dip in one of these wonderfully cool swimming holes.
The Blue Lagoon, Huntsville
An hour and a half north of Houston lies the Blue Lagoon, which consists of two azure blue spring-fed lagoons.
Primarily a scuba-training site, the Blue Lagoon also welcomes casual visitors on a space-available basis at certain hours during the day.
Grab snacks and drinks at a retail store on site while you enjoy the tropical oasis deep in the heart of Texas.
The Blue Lagoon is located at 649 Pinedale Rd, Huntsville, TX 77320. For more information, visit bluelagoonscuba.net or call (936) 438-8888.
Barton Springs Pool, Austin
The three-acre pool nestled in Austin’s Zilker Park is fed from underground springs and boasts an average temperature of 68-70 degrees, making the swimming spot an ideal escape from the state’s triple-digit summer temperatures.
Don’t get caught off guard: Depths of the pool range from 0’ to 18' and the pool’s concrete sides and bottom can sometimes prove a bit slippery on account of algae (The pool closes for cleaning at least once a week). For an early morning swim, prepare to swim at your own risk. Lifeguards are typically on duty late morning through the evening. Want to sunbathe after a dip in the chilly water? Set down a towel and lounge in the grassy areas surrounding the pool.
Food is not permitted inside Barton Springs but worry not, replenish yourself at the concession stand just outside the main entrance. And if you’re lucky, a couple food trucks might be parked nearby. Drinks are permitted inside the Springs but must be in a plastic re-sealable container with a twist-top lid.
Fun facts: 1) A five-year-old Robert Redford learned to swim at the pool while he was visiting family in the Lone Star State, according to the Austin Parks and Recreation Department. 2) Barton Springs is home to the endangered Barton Springs Salamander, and is listed as a federally protected habitat.
Parking is available nearby in Zilker Park.
Barton Springs Pool is located at 2131 William Barton Dr, Austin, TX 78746. For more information, visit austintexas.gov or call (512) 974-6300.
Deep Eddy Pool, Austin
Deep Eddy is the state’s oldest swimming pool.
The pool is open year round and has designated time slots for lap swimming and recreational swimming.
Deep Eddy Pool is listed as a historic landmark on the National Register of Historic Places. Opened in 1915 as a swimming hole in the Colorado River, the pool became a resort dubbed Deep Eddy Bathing Beach in the 1920s, and is now an oft-visited swimming pool operated by the City of Austin. Whilst a resort, several attractions were built in and around the swimming hole including a zip pline, carousel, ferris wheel and a 70-foot slide.
The pool boasts an average temperature of 75 degrees, making it a perfect way to stave off the scorching summer heat.
When you’re not swimming, catch some rays on the grassy lawn nearby or snack on some food from the concession stand on-site.
Fun fact: Texas musician Jimmie Dale Gilmore wrote the song “Deep Eddy Blues” about the pool and nearby bar, the Deep Eddy Cabaret, according to the nonprofit Friends of Deep Eddy. If Deep Eddy is your road trip destination, it’s a must-include Texas tune on your road trip playlist.
Deep Eddy Pool is located at 401 Deep Eddy Ave, Austin, TX 78703. For more information, visit austintexas.gov or call (512) 472-8546.
Hamilton Pool Preserve, Dripping Springs
Just a short distance from the Pedernales River, the aquamarine Hamilton Pool is arguably the most stunning swimming hole in the state. Here, waters from Hamilton Creek cascade fifty feet from a semicircular rock overhang into the natural pool below.
Hamilton Pool and its surrounding areas were designated a preserve by the Travis County Commissioner's Court in 1990.
What to know before you go: The waters are frigid, sometimes dipping as low as 50 degrees. Swimming at the preserve’s show stopping natural pool isn’t a guarantee. Swimming status is determined by bacteria levels and recent rainfall and swimming is not permitted when bacteria levels are too high. Also, skip the flip flops and opt for some closed-toe shoes: The hiking trail from the parking lot to the pool is a quarter mile and is steep and rugged with uneven steps. Pro tip: Pack some snacks and loads of water. There are no concessions on site. With no lifeguard on site, it’s swim at your own risk. However, life jackets are available on a first come first serve basis.
Fun facts: 1) In 1980, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department cited Hamilton Pool as the most significant natural area in rural Travis County. 2) Avid birders, this one’s for you - Hamilton Pool Preserve serves as home to endangered Golden-Cheeked Warblers.
Hamilton Pool Preserve is located at 24300 Hamilton Road, Dripping Springs, TX 78620. For more information, visit traviscountytx.gov or call 512-264-2740.
Jacob’s Well, Wimberly
Beat the heat this summer at Jacob’s Well, a spring fed by the Trinity Aquifer. The aquifer is about 140 feet below the water’s surface, and the well opens up into the state’s second biggest underwater cave system (The main cavern is 4,341 feet long and the secondary cavern, which branches off the main cavern, is 1,314 feet long). It’s a tad intimidating for some. Others have no problem jumping in.
Jacob’s well is open seasonally from May 1 through September 30. The water stays a constant 68 degrees.
Pro tip: Skip the sandals and opt for closed-toe shoes: There’s a 15-minute hike from the nearest parking lot to the swimming spot and the area surrounding the Well can be steep and slippery. Also, bring plenty of water and pack some snacks. There are no concessions on site. And finally, swim at your own risk – there is no lifeguard on duty.
According to Hays county, the well got it’s name in the early 1850’s when William C. Winters, an early settler of Wimberley, hiked up Cypress Creek searching for its source and found an overflowing spring. It is said that Mr. Winters exclaimed “like unto a well in Bible times.” Thus it was named ‘Jacob’s Well’.
Free guided morning tours are available by request on the 2nd and 4th Saturday of every month, excluding summer months.
Jacob’s Well is located at 1699 Mt. Sharp Road, Wimberley, TX 78676. For more information, visit hayscountytx.com or call (512) 214-4593.
Krause Springs, Spicewood
Founded in 1955, Krause Springs is located in the Texas Hill Country on a 115-acre property owned by the Krause Family for over 50 years. The property is listed on the National Registry of Historical Sites and contains 32 springs, a spring-fed man made pool and a natural pool that flows into Lake Travis.
There are no lifeguards on duty so it’s swim at your own risk.
Fishing is permitted at some spots and the property and BBQ grills are also available to use. Restrooms are available on site as well.
If you plan to stay a few days, there’s a camping site and several RV sites.
Stroll through the Butterfly garden before you go.
Krause Springs is located at 424 Co Rd 404, Spicewood, TX 78669. For more information, visit krausesprings.net or call (830) 693-4181.
Devil’s Waterhole, Burnet
Located in Inks Lake State Park, Devil’s Waterhole is a popular Texas swimming spot that attracts daredevils and adrenaline junkies.Cliff-jumping is a big part of the swimming hole’s appeal,
Devil’s waterhole marks where Spring Creek and Inks Lake meet. The scenic spot is accessible by a quarter-mile hike or by or by paddling along Inks Lake.
No lifeguards are present so it’s swim at your own risk.
Devil’s Waterhole is located in Inks Lake State Park at 3630 Park Rd 4 W, Burnet, TX 78611. For more information, visit texas.gov/state-parks/inks-lake or call (512) 793-2223.
Don’t get caught off guard. Before venturing off, familiarize yourself with adjusted hours and follow guidelines around social distancing and other COVID-19 safety measures required by the destinations you visit.