The Best Wild Swimming Locations in Bath


Located in the northeastern part of Somerset, the captivating city of Bath awaits with its rich heritage and vibrant culture. Renowned for its Roman-built baths and rejuvenating hot springs, Bath has become a sought-after destination for those seeking wellness and relaxation.

However, the therapeutic properties of water extend beyond the thermal springs, as the region offers splendid opportunities for wild swimming in its rivers and lakes. Discovering the finest spots for this invigorating activity in and around Bath is now effortless, thanks to our carefully curated list. Prepare to find your new beloved swimming haven.

Water Safety Equipment

Swimming in open water presents inherent risks, but you can mitigate them by adhering to safety advice and utilising protective gear that enhances visibility. Optimal safety equipment includes a tow float or dry bag and a swim cap, both in vibrant colours, as wearing bright hues is highly recommended for water activities.

Additionally, it is advisable to carry supplementary safety tools such as a light and whistle to attract attention in case of emergencies. Moreover, using earplugs, a nose clip, and goggles can safeguard against waterborne bacteria and offer further protection.

Dundas Aqueduct

  • Location: Monkton Combe
  • Supervised?: No

The Dundas Aqueduct spans the River Avon in Monkton Combe, allowing the Kennet and Avon Canal to pass over it. Beneath the aqueduct lies the Monkton Combe School Boat Club, featuring a convenient pontoon for effortless entry and exit from the water.

This section of the river is expansive, deep, and gently flowing, providing an ideal setting for a relaxing open-air swim beneath the arches of the viaduct. Enhance your swimming experience by taking a leisurely stroll along the family-friendly footpaths that wind through the surrounding natural scenery.

Warleigh/Claverton Weir

  • Location: Claverton
  • Supervised?: No

If you trace the course of the River Avon starting from Dundas Aqueduct, you will discover Warleigh Weir, also called Claverton Weir.

This location offers shallow sections where children can play in the water and deeper areas above the weir for swimming. It is an ideal destination for a family outing on a scorching summer day.

However, during warmer weather, Warleigh Weir tends to become crowded as numerous families seek refuge from the heat, enjoying the outdoors and the picturesque surroundings, which include a nearby field with amiable cows.

Farleigh Hungerford

  • Location: Farleigh Hungerford
  • Price: £2
  • Supervised?: No

The Farleigh and District Swimming Club, established in 1933, is believed to be one of the oldest and last surviving swimming clubs in the UK. It continues to operate today and holds the distinction of having access to a dedicated section of the River Frome in Farleigh Hungerford exclusively for its members.

Despite the membership requirement, don't be discouraged as this venue offers affordability compared to other paid wild swimming locations. A yearly membership, granting unlimited access to the river, is available for a mere £12. Alternatively, if you plan to visit fewer than six times a year, you have the option to pay as you go, with each swim priced at £2.

From May to September, this expansive waterway offers a blend of shallow and deep areas, accompanied by a diving board and rope swings, creating an optimal setting for both leisurely wild swimmers and families seeking a spot to wade or take a refreshing plunge.

Additionally, club members can avail themselves of convenient amenities including changing rooms, restrooms, and an adjacent meadow that serves as an idyllic location for picnics.

The Glove Dippers

  • Location: Holt
  • Price: £60-100 annual membership
  • Supervised?: No

Introducing an ideal swim spot tailored to experienced swimmers, we have the Glove Dippers. Located behind Glove Factory Studios, this unsupervised lake spans 100 meters in length and reaches a depth of 2 meters.

We highly recommend this lake exclusively for those with prior wild swimming experience. Whether you're preparing for open water swimming events or seeking a serene environment for uninterrupted laps, this venue offers all the amenities you require. You'll find a changing hut, a cold water shower, and lockers for storing your personal belongings (remember to bring your own padlock).

The only drawback is that membership is mandatory to access this swim spot. Annual membership typically costs £70 (£60 for Holt residents), but prices can increase to £100 (£80 for Holt residents) during the peak summer season.

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