The amazing swimming holes in Austin are what make summers bearable here! Although this is a landlocked city, there are some really fun places to explore on the hottest days of the year. One of the best parts about these swimming holes is that lots of them are spring-fed, so they stay ice-cold all summer long.
Here are 15 of the best swimming holes in Austin for you to explore! Whether you’re new to ATX, visiting, or a longtime resident, here are some fun places to visit on your next free summer day.
15 Best Swimming Holes in Austin
1. BARTON SPRINGS
This is the most famous swimming hole in Austin…it’s a naturally spring-fed pool that remains about 68 degrees year-round, so it’s COLD!
It’s 3 acres in size and one of the most popular summer attractions in ATX. I love packing up a towel and a book and lounging on the grassy banks, then jumping in the ice-cold water when I get hot. Even on the hottest triple-digit days of the year, the water is shockingly cold and feels sooo good.
2. WIMBERLEY BLUE HOLE
Blue Hole is only a 45-minute drive from Austin, and this is seriously one of the most beautiful swimming holes you’ll find! Blue Hole Regional Park is full of hiking trails, picnic spots, and a beautiful swimming area. The swimming hole is a section of Cypress Creek that’s shaded by hundred-year-old Bald Cypress Trees.
This is one of the best family-friendly swimming holes in Austin because there’s a nice shallow area (about 18 inches deep) for toddlers, rope swings for the big kids, and a deeper area where adults can lounge in tubes and chat. There’s also a large grassy area for family picnics. The parking lot is nearby, and it’s a very easy, paved walk from the car to the swimming area.
3. JACOB’S WELL
***UPDATE: NO SWIMMING FOR 2023*** A drought in the area has forced Jacob's Well Natural Area to close the swimming area. You can still get reservations and go on hikes or explore the area, but swimming isn't allowed right now.
While you’re in Wimberley, try to get a reservation at Jacob’s Well! This is one of the most-photographed swimming holes near Austin because it’s soooo crazy cool looking!
Jacob’s Well has a 12-foot diameter but descends 120 feet deep! You can lounge on the banks or swim in the actual well. It’s spring-fed and remains 68 degrees year round.
Lots of guests enjoy jumping off the cliff into the well, but you can also lounge on the banks and venture into the well a few times.
While it is a very cool place to check off your Texas bucket list, this isn’t the type of swimming hole that's worth visiting every single year. The ground is really slippery, and there aren’t a lot of places to lounge, and the well itself is mostly kept clear for the people jumping off the cliff. Super cool spot for pictures, though!
4. DEEP EDDY POOL
Deep Eddy is the oldest pool in Texas and a must-visit swimming hole in Austin! It’s located very close to Barton Springs and is similarly spring-fed and cooold year-round. Half of the pool is dedicated to lap swimming, and the other half of the pool has a beach entry.
5. TWIN FALLS IN BARTON CREEK GREENBELT
Twin Falls is a fun place to jump in the water on a hot summer day in Austin. It’s located in the Barton Creek Greenbelt in a shallow part of the creek, so in the dry months, this swimming hole might dry up. But when it’s been raining (May/June), there are some places that get deep enough that you can jump off the rocks into the water.
Twin Falls is a short hike (about .4 miles, or 10 minutes) from the Barton Creek Greenbelt trailhead at Mopac and 360. The easiest way to get there is to park at the link included above and then walk a short distance on the trail until you arrive at the swimming hole.
Pro tip: it gets SO crowded on the weekends, but it’s often nearly empty on weekday mornings in the summer.
SECRET BEACH AT ROY G GUERRERO PARK
If it’s called “Secret Beach” on google maps, is it really a secret beach? Either way, this is a fun (and free!) swimming hole in Austin that’s dog-friendly!
Depending on the time of year you visit, it might be pretty shallow. (This part of the Colorado River isn’t dammed like the downtown portion.) So while you probably won’t be able to jump in or fully submerge, this is a great place to bring your dogs for a short hike and then a splash in the river!
7. EMMA LONG METROPOLITAN PARK
Emma Long is an AMAZING swimming spot on the banks of Lake Austin. It has a sandy beach, and although you’re swimming in a river, it feels like a little beach! You’ll have to pay an entry fee to get into the park, but once you’re there, it’s a fantastic place to spend a full day of swimming, picnicking, and lounging with the family.
The beach area has a sandy area right up against the edge of the water and a roped-off swimming spot. There are grills, lots of grassy areas to spread out blankets and towels, and bathrooms.
8. HAMILTON POOL IN DRIPPING SPRINGS
***UPDATE FOR 2023: SWIMMING IS CURRENTLY NOT ALLOWED*** Hamilton Pool Preserve says there's high bacteria in the water, so they aren't allowed swimming access at the time. Check back on their website for updates throughout the summer.
Hamilton Pool is about 45 minutes from Austin and 100% worth the drive! It’s a natural area that was created when the dome of an underground river collapsed thousands of years ago. Now we get to enjoy the beauty of it all!
9. HIPPIE HOLLOW PARK
Yep, it’s true! Hippie Hollow is a clothing-optional swimming hole in Austin. You can swim in the nude and not feel bad about it…this is the only legally-recognized naked beach in the state of Texas!
10. CAMPBELL’S HOLE
Like Twin Falls, this is another fun (free!) swimming hole in Austin located along the Barton Creek Greenbelt trail.
Park at the trailhead on Spyglass (1601 Spyglass Dr, Austin, TX 78746), then hike north for a bit until you run into this swimming spot.
There’s a shallow area for wading, and (only) when the rain has picked up, there’s a deeper spot where you can jump off a rock into the water! Just note: like all of the swimming holes in Austin greenbelts, the water level changes based on rain/drought. So you might get a gorgeous day of swimming in clean, moving water, or you might show up, and it looks like a stagnant swamp… Just be prepared!
Barton Creek, Austin, TX, Austin, TX 78746, United States
12. BLUE HOLE IN GEORGETOWN
This is a really popular, fun place to swim in Georgetown, Texas (about 30 minutes north of Austin). It has free parking, restrooms, and picnic areas, and it’s a great place to spend a summer day. The swimming spot is in the San Gabriel River, located about 5 blocks north of the downtown square.
13. ST EDWARD’S PARK
Bull Creek runs through North Austin by the Capitol of Texas Highway, and there are several little swimming holes along this hiking trail. One that’s very easy to access is the swimming spot in St Edward’s park. Just park at the parking lot at 7301 Spicewood Springs Rd, and you can get to the swimming hole in about a 3-minute walk.
Parking lot, 7301 Spicewood Springs Rd, Austin, TX 78759
14. KRAUSE SPRINGS
This is such a dreamy place to spend the morning! Krause Springs is a gorgeous swimming hole about 30 miles northwest of Austin in Spicewood, Texas. If you’re trying to swim during a drought when lots of the greenbelt Austin swimming holes are dried up, Krause Springs will be flowing! That’s because it’s a natural spring, so the water levels and temperature remain fairly constant throughout the year.
15. COMMONS FORD RANCH
If the greenbelt is too crowded, try heading to Commons Ford for a hike and a dip in the river! The main highlight of this park is hiking, but you can walk right up to the river and swim, too. There’s a big grassy bank with direct access to the water.
Since this swimming hole is pretty far west, it’s out of the way of lots of the Austin tourists who will be at Barton Springs or the Greenbelt. If you’re trying to avoid the crowds, check out Commons Ford!