Cool Off: Five Outdoor Swimming Places in Berlin

July 27, 2016

In summer, Berlin is the perfect place to take a dip in rivers, lakes and pools. Here, Daniel Cole lets us in on the best swimming spots in Germany's capital, Berlin.

Berlin may be associated with music, fashion and art but it's also a city that loves to swim. Summer is prime time for a dip and Berliners have an abundance of great lidos and swimming spots to choose from. 

If you're heading to Germany's capital this summer, read on for a round up of the best places to cool off, from a converted harbour barge to a swanky outdoor spa. 

1. Barge in to Badeschiff

Badeschiff beach bar in Berlin

Located in the central Kreuzberg district, The Badeschiff sits in the River Spree, providing a clean, cool and convenient option to relax during Berlin’s periods of tropical weather. The converted harbour barge, is connected to the sanded shores, through an elaborate, wooden pontoon, with a well-stocked bar and plenty of deck chairs. Badeschiff ultimately serves those who you are out to actually swim a length or two as much as it does those who want to cut loose and swagger poolside.

2. Glitz and Glamour at Haubentaucher

Cool Off: Five Outdoor Swimming Places in Berlin - Glitz and Glamour at Haubentaucher

Epitomising Berlin’s rapid development and urbanity, Haubentaucher is part club, half public pool. It has the glamour of a Miami Beach party, with a glittering clientele with chiseled chins and finely sculpted bodies so if you fancy escaping the dearth of Friedrichshain Revaler district into a world of sleek house music and tanned, model-wannabes, then Haubentaucher is worth your time.

3. Walk on the Wild Side at Schlactensee

Restaurant Fischerhuettein Schlachtensee, Berlin

One of Berlin’s many charms is the ease of accessibility to the countryside and wilderness. Lake Schlactensee lies only 40 minutes away from the city centre via train, and is one of the cleanest lakes in Berlin. Snuggled in the middle of a dense forest, surrounded by bike paths and a historical restaurant/beer garden, Schlactensee is a real natural getaway. For those who manage to get there early enough, renting a boat comes highly recommended as it allows you to enjoy 360 degree views of the landscape while simultaneously managing to escape the hoards who take up the lake’s limited bathing space.

4. Relax at Vabali

Inside at the Vabali Pools in Berlin, Germany

Vabali is Berlin’s swankiest and decadent of spas, located in the very heart of the city. Replete with saunas, restaurants and massage treatments along with a pool, it's for all seasons allowing you to warm up and cool down in the most relaxing of ways. Themed like a Balinese holiday retreat with a sublime wooden aesthetic and Oriental aromas, it's one of the best things you can do for yourself while in Berlin. It is, however, very German with naked people in your face most of the time.

5. Be One with Nature at Strandbad Jungfernheide

Strandbad Jungfernheide beach, Berlin

An inner-city getaway located just 10 minutes away from Kurfürstendamm, Strandbad Jungfernheide is located in a serene woodland setting, where nature meets the city. The natural pool comes with a beach wide enough for tanning and sporting activities alike, which is also cleaned by a team of professionals on a daily basis to ensure it meets the highest standards of its visitors. And beaches are indeed a rarity in this part of Germany. There’s also a volley-ball court, water ski and wake-board rental options for those more sporty.

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Daniel Cole Lost but not forgotten, Dan Cole is an English music and travel journalist based out in Berlin with a love for biking, hiking and Latin American record collecting. The next destination? He's going to stick the thumb out and see where it takes him.