There are plenty of vacation options for where you can go this summer. For a change of scenery and maybe for something off the beaten track, you might try visiting one of these swimming destinations. These exciting wonders are located across the United States and around the world. Here are a few unique swimming destinations to visit.
There’s plenty to see when visiting the Grand Canyon. One of the hard-to-reach spots and one of the best swimming destinations in the southwest is Havasu Falls. There are a series of waterfalls along an 8-mile hiking trail that travelers can take a swim in. One of the most picturesque is Havasu Falls. But, there are several others that you should stop and admire along the way.
These falls are managed by the Havasupai Tribe. Access to the falls is only allowed if you have a camping or lodging reservation. Therefore, only plan on visiting Havasu Falls once you get a reservation. If not, you won’t be able to hike to the falls.
Camping reservations open on February 1st at Havasupai Reservations. For 2019, each camping reservation requires a minimum 3-night and 4-day stay. If tent camping isn’t your cup of tea, the Havasupai Lodge offers basic hotel-like accommodations. Reservations open June 1 of each year and are taken over the phone at (928) 448-2111.
Whether you camp or stay at the lodge, try booking as close to the opening date as possible as the books fill up quickly.
Conveniently located in Santa Rosa, New Mexico on Interstate 40 and historic U.S. Route 66 is the Blue Hole. As you can guess, it gets its name from the sapphire-blue colored water. It has been a popular destination for centuries because it’s a desert oasis. Today, it’s a fun place to swim or scuba dive.
The water is a constant 62 degrees Fahrenheit, which may feel refreshing on a warm day. While visitors can swim, Blue Hole may be more exciting for scuba divers. That’s because you can dive to the floor which has an approximate 80-foot depth. The cave system that is also Blue Hole’s water source goes down to 194 feet deep. However, a vent pipe blocks access to divers.
Besides Blue Hole, Santa Rosa also has a Route 66 Museum. This lets you explore vintage cars and imagine what life was like in the mid-20th century. You are also two hours away from Albuquerque where you can continue your journey.
Devil’s Den Spring
Situated about halfway between Gainesville and Orlando, Florida is Devil’s Den Spring. This naturally occurring spring is open to snorkeling and scuba divers. The maximum depth is 54 feet and the year-round water temperature is 72 degrees.
On-site lodging is available with rental cabins, tent sites and an RV park. Devils Den can serve as your basecamp as there are several other snorkeling spots nearby. You may also decide to take a weekend trip to Orlando while you’re there.
A fun family outing can be Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park in Missouri. The shut-ins are a rare geologic phenomenon that makes a natural swimming area protected from the river’s dangerous current. Some areas are “natural waterslides” where you can go with the flow. Make sure you bring water shoes or tennis shoes to avoid slipping on the rocks.
Beyond the shut-ins are tranquil swimming holes and a sand bar you can relax at. You can also jump from rocks into the water along the way for some extra excitement.
On-site camping is available although an advance reservation is highly recommended during the summer months. Johnson’s Shut-Ins and nearby Elephant Rocks State Park are some of Missouri’s most popular state parks for a reason. You can also enjoy the park’s hiking trails which let you explore the St. Francois Mountains.
Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve
Oahu’s Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve can be the spot you are looking for if you want pristine beaches and exploring the coral reef. There are plenty of swimming and snorkeling options. Look for tropical fish and other marine life while you are here. If children are traveling with you, see how many different colors they can spot.
As a heads up, the bay is closed every Tuesday for conservation.
Hanauma Bay is 25 minutes east of Waikiki on the southeastern edge of the island. It can be a fun excuse to explore more of the island if you want to venture away from Diamond Head resort area.
Don’t forget that Southwest Airlines now flies to Hawaii. You might have enough points to arrive sooner than you might think.
One Caribbean destination you might be curious enough to visit is Placencia, Belize. Some consider Placencia as having the best beaches in Belize. You probably won’t be disappointed.
Laughing Bird Caye National Park is one place you should make time for, although you will need to take a ferry because it’s 13 miles off the coast from Placencia. Snorkeling trips are the most popular reason to visit Laughing Bird Caye. You can also hire a boat to go diving, dolphin watching or exploring some of the other barrier islands.
When you’re not in the water, another popular activity is the Bunches of Fun Banana Farm Tour. This working banana farm tour is easy to reach from the Placencia resort area. You can learn about the entire banana farming process and enjoy a tasty snack when the tour ends.
The Maldives are one of the most exotic swimming destinations in the world. You can stay at one of several high-end resorts, including the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island. Or you may even rent your own private island. Wherever you stay, you can lounge on the beach, snorkel or scuba dive.
You may even decide to rent a jet ski or guide to explore the various islands making up the Maldives.
While here, you may also decide to relax at a spa. In regards to dining, you may have private dinner on the beach or in an underwater restaurant. While too many people think the Maldives are a place to be lazy, there is plenty of activities to keep you active.
The most unique swimming destinations are not always the most difficult spots to reach. They also make for an interesting and relaxing vacation. If you want to see waterfalls, snorkel or enjoy world-class beaches, you now have some ideas of where to travel next.