There’s nothing like a cool dip in a swimming pool when the weather gets warmer. Whether you swim to get fit, or just for fun, finding a fantastic aquatic centre is an absolute must.
We’ve done our research and come up with a list of the top three swimming pools in the Canberra region.
If you have a go-to aquatic centre that we didn’t mention, please share your recommendations in the comments area. We’d love to know where you and your family get fit and cool down.
Let’s get straight into it.
What Makes a Great Swimming Pool Experience?
For fitness or for fun, time spent at a swimming pool should always be positive. So, what exactly should you be looking for in a great swimming pool experience?
Here’s what we think.
- Clean. There’s nothing worse than swimming in a pool, only to find rubbish, bugs, or other nasties floating alongside you. The facilities surrounding the pool should be clean too, including the bathrooms/change rooms, the seating area, and the tuck shop.
- The right temperature. In summer, there’s nothing better than jumping into a cold swimming pool. But, Canberra isn’t warm all year round, and if you plan on swimming through the cooler months, you’ll need to find a heated swimming pool. Heated pools shouldn’t be as warm as a bathtub, but they shouldn’t give you the chills, either.
- Flexible pricing. Many pools offer money-saving pricing plans that allow the whole family to make use of the swimming pool as often as they like. Look for a pool with a pricing plan that suits your unique needs.
- Excellent facilities. The best pools have well-equipped change rooms, bathrooms, and showers. Some offer equipment (such as kickboards) for hire, and others offer hot food and coffee for an after-swim pick-me-up. Consider what’s important to you, and look for a pool with excellent facilities.
- Friendly, qualified staff. Swimming pools can be dangerous, and if you plan to take little kids to the pool, you’ll want staff that are both friendly and qualified.
- A pool that suits your needs. If you are swimming laps, you’ll want a fairly long pool with lots of lanes. If you want to have fun with your kids, look for an aquatic centre with slides, fountains, and other fun features.
The Top 5 Canberra Swimming Pools According to You
RiotACT’s editorial team has combed through 19 years of on-site comments to compile a list of the most recommended businesses according to you.
To be listed in our Best of Canberra series, each business needs to have consistently received positive feedback on RiotACT and maintain a minimum average of 4/5 stars on both Google and Facebook reviews.
Built in 1931 and originally named “The Swimming Pool”, this beautiful art deco building is surrounded by lots of shady trees and is the place to be in summer. With a toddlers pool and a pirate ship playground means you can drop your kids off and hang out in the cafe sipping lattes all afternoon! TripAdvisor reviewer Kismetkate says: ‘I have visited this pool for many years and I love the vibe. An oasis of pristine art deco serenity run by lovely friendly folk.’
There is a lot that goes on at the YMCA NSW Gungahlin Leisure Centre including swimming lessons, squad training, carnivals and fitness classes from the studio to the pool. With free parking, a creche and the cafe, you’ll find convenience and leisure is always top of mind. Google reviewer John says: ‘My regular swimming pool. Always clean. Staff well trained.’
You don’t have to be an elite athlete to cut laps at the AIS Aquatic and Fitness Centre. With a swim school, fitness centre and holiday program anyone can access the state of the art facilities. Their pools are also available for hire for swim events and groups with the ability to have the 50 or 25 meter lanes. Facebook reviewer Erica says: ‘Very happy with the swim school. My children are getting more confident in the water which is money well spent.’
Giving back to the community is important to this friendly team with programs such as SwimAbility which is a specialised program for people with disabilities. There’s also fitness programs for seniors as well as beach volleyball and BBQ facilities. Not to mention the toddlers pool and the 50 metre olympic size swimming pool! Facebook reviewer Timothy says: ‘The perfect spot for your swimming and recreation purposes.’
Deakin Pool has top quality swim programs for kids and adults as well as aquacise and hydrotherapy lessons. The manager, who everyone calls Simmo, is more than happy to have a chat and is pretty good at teaching absolutely anyone how to swim. Just ask him! Google reviewer Alex says: ‘New facilities and great changing rooms. Great hot water showers and friendly staff.’
Who did you pick?
Thanks to our commenters who have provided insightful feedback on the best and worst Canberra swimming pools.
If you believe we have got it wrong, please let us know.
Please comment below detailing your experience with Canberra swimming pools. Who would you recommend? Who would you use again? Who would you steer clear of?