Bavaria, Germany


You will find many natural lakes in the mountainous area just outside of Munich, each one more beautiful than the next. In summer the temperatures are high, the water is divine and the swimming is fabulous. Not only is the swimming fabulous, it is good for you. The water is filled with natural minerals from the nearby springs. Take a trip to Walchensee near Kochel in the Alps and enjoy the quite mountains, remote forests and the stunning island Of Sassau, just off shore. And while in the area, definitely visit a Spa, you deserve it!


Sierra Dos Gredos, Spain

Sierra De Gredos

Spain has some fabulous rivers and lakes, not least in the Sierra da Guara and the Sierra Dos Gredos Mountains. The rivers have gorgeous white sand beaches, some small and some off the beaten track, and the swimming is idyllic. The swimming is safe, the water is calm, and a day can be spent walking, cycling and swimming. Pack a picnic and take lots of refreshments with you . The beauty of these spots is they are totally remote and you may bump into a few people but not many. Also, the old aqueducts are quite a thing to see.


Lake Negratín, Granada

Lake Negratin Granada

This is a real tourist destination and the lake is filled with outdoor swimmers and nature lovers alike. The lake is large, a freshwater lake near the villages of Freila, Zujar and Cuevas del Campo.

You can suntan, swim, canoe, go sailing or head to the nearby hot springs that are in the mountain themselves. Lake Negratin is between the two provinces of Granada and Ameria, and it belongs to them both. There are facilities but it is a good idea to take towels, books and refreshments.


The Dolomites, Italy

Pozze Smeraldine

The Pozze Smeraldine is one of the most beautiful swimming spots in Italy, wild and unspoiled with crystal clear turquoise waters. There are natural rock pools, gorges, and waterfalls, and the swimming is exquisite. Make your way to the Dolomiti Friulane National Park and then down into the Cellina Valley. You can find the pools via a hiking path just outside of the village of Tramonti di Sopra. Take everything with you, including your hat, sunblock and a great book.


Chenonceaux, France

River Cher

The River Cher flows through the Chemonceaux area of France and is magnificent for swimming, surrounded by vineyards, orchards and the beautiful chateaux Chenonceaux. The main beach / grass area is hugely popular with tourists and the swimming, suntanning and sailing and canoeing are divine. You can find less crowded spots along the river, you just need to drive or walk a little bit further. The stunning Renaissance arches that span the river are really special and this spot is romantic, family friendly and perfect for swimming and photography. You can buy everything you need, snacks and drinks, in the small villages along the way.


Jura, France

Lac d'Ilay

France does in fact have the most beautiful outdoor swimming spots. Try the village of Ilay, which is surrounded by some fantastic lakes, all quiet, peaceful and offering the most superb swimming. The largest is Lac d'Ilay which has a grass area and a beach, the water is warm and delicious and you can easily spend a full day here. Look for the nearby cliffs if you are adventurous and jumping and diving are your thing. There are facilities although any time you go wild swimming, it’s a good idea to be prepared.

There are so many stunning spots in Europe to swim. It’s a good idea to take a day out of your busy sightseeing schedule and really relax. Outdoor natural swimming is a big thing in Europe. Spend a day with the locals. And enjoy.