When the weather is warm and sunny, Sydney residents love to head outdoors to cool off in the water. Whether they’re heading to the beach, splashing in the pool or relaxing on a deck chair, there’s something about swimming that makes everyone feel more energised and alive. It’s no wonder, then, that the city has a number of world-class public pools to choose from.
In addition to swimming, some of the public swimming pools in Sydney also offer a wide range of programs and activities to get Sydney residents moving, from aquatic and wellbeing classes and personal training sessions to group fitness and strength-training. In fact, many of the newer swimming pools in Sydney are specifically designed with these needs in mind. For example, Cook + Phillip Park Pool has a unique wavelike design and something for everyone, Ian Thorpe Aquatic Centre has 4 pools with a fun water play area, and Gunyama Park Aquatic Centre has a wide variety of indoor and outdoor relaxation spaces.
If you’re thinking about getting a new swimming pool in Sydney, make sure you do your research before making any final decisions. Talk to a few reputable pool builders and ask to see examples of their work. You should also read your contract carefully to ensure you understand all the costs involved and what is and isn’t included in the price. It’s also worth asking your builder about their insurance cover and the terms of their warranty.
A lot of public swimming pools in Sydney are licensed and inspected by the City of Sydney’s Health Department, and the department’s inspectors check for compliance with the latest standards and regulations. This is to ensure that bathing is safe for all, and to minimize the potential risk of disease transmission. The inspectors will also look at the condition of the pool, including its surface and lining.
Some of Sydney’s older swimming pools are in need of a serious facelift. The Fig Tree Baths, for example, are an impressive piece of Victorian elegance tucked away below Balmain’s sandstone cliffs and built in 1883. They are the oldest of the Sydney Harbour pools and one of the most historic places in Australia to swim. It was here that the first official competitions in swimming took place, with two races being held: an open event over 402 metres (440 yd) and a 91-metre (100 yd) race for juveniles.
Other pools are being pulled out of service altogether, like Canterbury pool in Sydney’s south-west. Lawyer Yusra Metwally, who grew up in the suburb, says its closure is a blow to the community. She remembers the intoxicating smell of chlorine, the delicious taste of hot chips and long carefree days at the pool with what seemed to be the entire neighbourhood.