Sydney’s 5 Best Public Pools

Since returning home from Dubai I grasp any opportunity to meet my friends if they fly into Sydney on a layover with Emirates. Seeing their gorgeous faces combined with playing tour guide around Sydney brings me much happiness and pride but almost immediately I began to notice a pattern. Guaranteed, without fail, each one of my friend’s continue to make the same observation regarding the lifestyle they are momentarily exposed to when here: being that Sydneysider’s appear to be very health conscious and the outdoorsy type. I fully agree with these sentiments but never realized this innate way of life until I relocated to Ireland and the UK where a colder climate forced me to seek shelter indoors and continual comfort in my fat pants or my than partner’s gray hoodie #cozy.

This commitment to health is evident in the many pools open to the public within the inner city that boast incredible views which will ease the pain any exercise brings and with views like these it would be a crime for Australians not to be outdoorsy. So should you be visiting Sydney in the warmer months, or willing to brave a chilly dip in winter these are Sydney’s best public pools with views to match.

B O N D I  I C E B E R G S

Image courtesy of Bondi Icebergs

Admittedly venturing to Bondi Beach is a bit of a two step affair which might leave visitor’s opting for a car, but be warned parking in Bondi Beach is dismal and fortunately public transport is relatively frequent by Sydney standards. The quickest way to these sandy shores is via a train from Town Hall to Bondi Junction which roughly takes about 10 minutes. Upon disembarking you will then catch a bus located at the top of the station … remember when it doubt to follow the crowd. Buses run every 10-15 minutes throughout the day and should you be up for walking the beach is located roughly 2km from the station. This might seem a lot of fuss but a trip to Sydney is not complete without visiting the beaches of the East and with the club itself being over 100 years old, swimming at Icebergs is a chance to become part of the historical framework. Be sure to treat yourself to an early lunch after your swim and sauna as the club is a one stop shop.

T I M E T A B L E | Open everyday except Thursday when the pool is closed for cleaning

  • Monday 6.00am – 6.30pm
  • Tuesday 6.00am – 6.30pm
  • Wednesday 6.00am – 6.30pm
  • Friday 6.00am – 6.30pm
  • Saturday 6.30am – 6.30pm
  • Sunday 6.30am – 6.30pm

F E E S | Adults $6.50, Children $4.50

W H E E L C H A I R  A C C E S S I B L E | Yes, but patrons should call ahead for assistance

G R E E N W I C H  B A T H S

Image courtesy of Greenwich Baths

Nestled in Sydney’s lower north shore, Greenwich Baths is truly a hidden gem and given its natural environment is a great alternative for those wanting to swim minus the exposure to chlorine should they have an allergen. This historical landmark is fitted with facilities to make for a comfortable day out and the surrounding views will make any visitor want to pack up and move to the harbour permanently. Access to the baths is a possibility by car but finding parking unless arriving early would cause the calmest person stress. Non locals might want to consider taking the scenic route from Circular Quay via the Parramatta River ferry stopping at Greenwich or bus 265 from the city. For those concerned about natural wildlife, the baths are fitted with shark nets though weather conditions sometimes might render the location unsafe so if the weather is questionable be sure to check their website before venturing north to ensure they are open for the day.

T I M E T A B L E | Seasonal

  • November 8am- 6pm
  • December  8am- 7pm
  • January     8am- 8pm
  • February   8am- 7pm
  • March        8am- 5pm

F E E S | Adults $4.20, Children $3.20

W H E E L C H A I R  A C C E S S I B L E | Partially, if patrons are arriving by ferry as arrival by road requires descending several stairs which might prove problematic

N O R T H  S Y D N E Y  O L Y M P I C  P O O L

Image courtesy of North Sydney Olympic Pool

Found literally next to Sydney’s Harbour Bridge, the views from North Sydney’s Olympic Pool might leave serious swimmers somewhat distracted by the beauty of the location. However, with this beauty comes a higher admission price but with an indoor and outdoor pool there is something for everyone here including children’s facilities. Access to the pool is easy as patrons can opt to catch the ferry directly across to Milsons Point from Circular Quay easily identified by the smiling face that is Luna Park. Or a more cost effective alternative is catching the train from Wynard across the Bridge to Milsons Point and walking down to the base of the harbour. This area of Sydney is truly underestimated and often missed by tourists, therefore, in order to maximize your stay try and time your visit to explore Kirribilli Markets held on scheduled weekends, Luna Park itself, Wendy’s Secret Garden or neighbouring McMahons Point for a selection of eateries.

T I M E T A B L E | Open everyday except for Good Friday and Christmas Day, opening times vary on other public holidays

  • Monday 5.30am – 9.00pm
  • Tuesday 5.30am – 9.00pm
  • Wednesday 5.30am – 9.00pm
  • Thursday 5.30am – 9.00pm
  • Friday 5.30am – 9.00pm
  • Saturday 7.00am – 7.00pm
  • Sunday 7.00am – 7.00pm

F E E S | Adults $7.80, Concession $6.50, Children $3.90

W H E E L C H A I R  A C C E S S I B L E | Yes

A N D R E W  ( B O Y )  C H A R L T O N  P O O L

Image courtesy of Andrew (Boy) Charlton Pool

Surrounded by Sydney’s Royal Botanic Gardens lies Andrew (Boy) Charlton Pool right in the heart of Sydney’s CBD and thus the perfect option for those who don’t wish to venture to far for a quick dip. The pools are within walking distance of Circular Quay, Martin Place and St James station’s, but if coming from deeper within the city bus 441 runs from the Queen Victoria Building directly to the centre from Monday through to Saturday. However, please keep in mind that the service only runs every half hour and given that the city of Sydney is quite small don’t be intimidated by the thought of walking to the pool which provides a fantastic way to explore some sites along the way.

T I M E T A B L E | Open everyday except for Good Friday and Christmas Day, opening times vary on other public holidays

  • Monday 6.00am – 8.00pm
  • Tuesday 6.00am – 8.00pm
  • Wednesday 6.00am – 8.00pm
  • Thursday 6.00am – 8.00pm
  • Friday 6.00am – 8.00pm
  • Saturday 6.00am – 8.00pm
  • Sunday 6.00am – 8.00pm

F E E S | Adults $6.40, Concession $4.80

W H E E L C H A I R  A C C E S S I B L E | Yes

W Y L I E  B A T H S

Image courtesy of Brenda Janschek

Adjacent to Bondi Beach sits another equally exquisite sandy cove, Coogee which is where one can find Wylie Baths. What makes this natural swimming spot unique is not only the 180 degree views spanning across the Pacific Ocean but the poolside massages available for guests. All remedial massage therapists are fully qualified and given the popularity of the seaside service bookings are essential with appointments available from 8.45am to 4.00pm. Although the public baths are open 365 days a year “massage by the sea” is a seasonal opportunity operating in Sydney’s warmer months from October through to April. Lastly, given the baths natural environment both the massage service, any yoga classes you wish to participate in and the pools themselves are subject to close when whether is bad or tides are low which staff utilise as a chance to fulfill their maintenance duties. As such, before venturing East to Coogee via car or bus be sure to check their website for updates on conditions and perhaps consider completing the Bondi to Coogee cliff walk as an additional adventure that day.

T I M E T A B L E | Closing times vary according to season, from October through to April 7.00pm and April through to September 5.00pm.

  • Monday 7.00am – 5.00pm | 7.00pm
  • Tuesday 7.00am – 5.00pm | 7.00pm
  • Wednesday 7.00am – 5.00pm | 7.00pm
  • Thursday 7.00am – 5.00pm | 7.00pm
  • Friday 7.00am – 5.00pm | 7.00pm
  • Saturday 7.00am – 5.00pm | 7.00pm
  • Sunday 7.00am – 5.00pm | 7.00pm

F E E S | Adults $5.00, Concession $$2.40, Children $2.40

Happy Travels



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