Fabulous places for wild swimming
There has been huge interest in the past few years in “wild swimming”; swimming in lakes, rivers and open water rather than the chlorinated pools we’re used to thinking about when we think “swimming”. The Guardian described it in a recent article as “the new yoga” (see link below) and quoted one dedicated wild swimmer as saying:
“The last thing it’s about is exercise,” she says. “It’s about being in the water and feeling it all around you. Being at eye level with nature.”
Anything that gets us back to nature is a bonus at Further Afield HQ, so we picked out some of our favourite Further Afield properties where you can enjoy a wild swim.
Casa da Cabaza, Galicia, Spain
Siets, who runs this fabulous B&B with her partner Tariq says, “we have a huge lake in our back yard and what better place to go outdoor swimming than here?” She has a point.
The Store at Wellhayes, Dorset
Staying at The Store you have access to the stunning lake at Wellhayes. Pop out for a swim before heading back to the deck for breakfast. Perfect? Just about.
Domaine de Terrac, Pyrenees, France
The tranquility of this wonderful B&B means leaving can be a struggle, but when you do there’s the beautiful Cascade de l’Artigue about an hour away (read more about the cascades here). After a swim, once you’re home, try the sauna and hot tub. The perfect combination.
Almohalla 51, Malaga, Spain
You don’t have to head to the coast when you’re staying inland from Malaga. Stay in Archidona at Almohalla 51 and you’ve the lakes at El Chorro or Embalses de Guadalhorce to enjoy for kayaking and swimming, along with good restaurants and fewer crowds in the summer.
Dorset House, Lyme Regis, Dorset
OK, so this one is about the beach, but we LOVE the wellness breaks that Lyn and Jason run at this stylish B&B in Lyme Regis. Each morning starts with a swim in the sea, something you could adopt on your own “wellness” stay here. Read more about their wellness breaks on their blog here https://www.dorsethouselyme.com/wellness-breaks-at-dorset-house/
Holiday Corbieres, Near Carcassonne, SW France
Staying at these apartments near Carcassonne you have the chance to swim in crystal clear river water which surrounds the houses. Just the sound of water rushing over the stone here is enough to relax you, but the apartments are rather lovely too.
Manorhaus, Ruthin, Wales
The Rhinog Range in Snowdonia also has what are considered some of the best wild swimming lakes in the UK. High up in the mountain air these lakes are guaranteed to revive. Then head back to the Manorhaus and check out what’s for supper.
You could also think about Tir y Coed, which is also near Snowdonia and the stunning north coast of Wales
Le Petite Maison, France
This characterful French cottage for two is a classic gite holiday – cosy and relaxing with plenty on your doorstep, including the beautiful Loire river. There are even bikes provided for you to head off and enjoy the beaches dotted along the shoreline. Owner Sue and Micaela, who also own Le Grande Maison, run great wine courses and tours too – a perfect combination of exercise and wine.
Fiskavaig Studio, Isle of Skye
The Faerie Pools on Skye are simply beautiful and famous amongst the wild swimming fraternity. At Fiskavaig Studio you’ve the ideal base to explore the island and sample the swimming at the pools, as well as taking in your own views at this very special location.
Hooppells Tor, Kingston, Devon
This wonderful B&B has coastline a mere 25-minute walk away, but there’s also The River Dart to consider if you’d like to sample wild swimming. Check out this Guardian article about wild swimming near Totnes – https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2017/jun/14/wild-swimming-river-dart-devon-outdoor-swimming-society-kari-furre
The House in Aups, Provence, France
Provence’s famous Lac de St Croix is only half an hour from the beautiful village retreat in Aups. The lakes are vast and offer amazing swimming and other water sports. Of course you could just use your pool, but where’s the fun in that?
- You can read the full Guardian article here: https://www.theguardian.com/fashion/2019/feb/27/swimming-is-the-new-yoga-why-the-fashion-pack-are-taking-a-dip-outdoors
- Wild Swimming (http://www.wildswimming.co.uk) is a site dedicated to the craze and lists some great places to take part
- The Independent ran a great piece on the background and includes some safety tips for making the most of it: https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/wild-swimming-uk-is-it-safe-legal-where-what-to-know-a8420231.html