The ultimate guide to the best swimming pools in the Netherlands

The sun is beating down your neck, and you don’t have a care in the world at that moment. You’re basking under the summer sun, soaking up on all the Vitamin D it can spare. It’s hot, but it is okay because you’re underwater, and the sun doesn’t bother you anyway (I sincerely hope you got the reference: if not, ask the nearest Disney fan). β€” How about going to some swimming pools in the Netherlands?

Summer’s around the corner and we know how much everyone is looking forward to it! Well, for the most part. We experienced heatwaves for the last couple of years, and it may very well happen again this year.

However, one way to beat the summer heat is by (drumroll) enjoying a swim!

READ MORE | Swimming in the Netherlands and Swimming Lessons: A fun Guide (and how to learn to swim as an adult)

We’ve made a list of all the places you can go to whether you need a respite from the heat, a weekend getaway, an awakening of the history nerd in you (seriously, wait for it), or if you want to work on your fitness! This list has it all!

Good news! After being closed as part of the national coronavirus measures, swimming pools re-opened on May 1. Note that 1,5-metre social distancing still applies. Take overcrowding into account when going to a swimming pool.

Let’s dive into it, shall we?

Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Swimming pools in Rotterdam

Outdoor swimming pools in Rotterdam

Badhotel Rockanje & Brasserie Lodgers

Only 400 metres from the sea, and nestled right in between the forest and dunes, this lodge is just a few miles away from Maasvlakte, Europoort, and Rotterdam. It’s perfect for a weekend getaway to escape the loud city traffic and enjoy some time in nature. You can spend the day at the beach, building those sandcastles and collecting all that sand, or you can stay at the lodge and enjoy their outdoor swimming pool! Best of both worlds, don’t you think?

They also have a large terrace where you can lounge to take in the nature sounds AND a private sauna. Prices vary per season.

πŸ“ Where to find it: Tweede Slag 1, 3235 CR Rockanje

⏱ How to get there: Take bus 403 from the Spijkenisse-Centrum metro station (Rotterdam metro line) to the Dorpsplein in Rockanje. From there it’s a 15 minutes walk to the badhotel.

SS Rotterdam’s Lido Terrace

If you’ve lived in Rotterdam, or have used the trams to go towards the south of the city, you would’ve heard the announcement to get off at Wilhelminaplein to go to the SS Rotterdam. Having been a fully functioning cruise ship from 1959 to 2000, the SS Rotterdam is another Rijksmonument (national heritage site). Her journey started off as the flagship of the Holland-America line. She was then briefly called the SS Rembrandt when she was sold to a cruise line company but was bought over by an investment group in the Netherlands when that company shut down. (We knew all you history nerds would stick around πŸ˜‰)

READ MORE | 10 World Heritage Sites in the Netherlands: the best monuments of Holland

She was restored to what she is today β€” a place to experience the ship while staying in one of their carefully decorated rooms on-board or to see the skyline of Rotterdam from the restaurant Lido’s Terrace.

They have an outdoor swimming pool that overlooks the Maas, where you can experience breathtaking views of the sunset while enjoying a swim through their pool. Their restaurant, of course, offers an outdoor seating area as well. This isn’t a place for you to exhaust your lungs, but a place to fill them up with some fresh seas air!

swimming pools in the netherlands
Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Good ol’ SS Rotterdam. Image: ellen1965_ (Instagram)

πŸ“ Where to find it: 3e Katendrechtsehoofd 25, 3072 AM Rotterdam

⏱ How to get there: From the Rotterdam Central Station, take metro D or E to Slinge or De Akkers and exit at the metro station Rijnhaven.

Indoor swimming pools in Rotterdam

Oostelijk Zwembad

This one is for the true swimming enthusiasts! It made it onto our guide for the best swimming pools in the Netherlands for a reason.

Like the name says (oost means east in Dutch), it is in the east of the centre of Rotterdam. Oostelijk Zwembad was founded in 1932, making it the oldest swimming pool in the city! Its architecture mirrors a nostalgic atmosphere, but you still have the pleasure of enjoying its modern facilities.

swimming pools in the netherlands
Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Do you see that mix of nostalgia and modernity? Image: @rustig_leven (Instagram)

Like I said, it’s for true swimming enthusiasts so if you’re looking to learn how to swim or practice your more advanced brush strokes, head on over to this place! They offer lessons for children and seniors, as well as various other water sports!

swimming pools in the netherlands
Swimming pools in the Netherlands. Image: @djacklittel (Instagram)

If you only want to take your kids for their swimming classes but also want to relax, they have a coffee corner you can use while your little one is in class.

πŸ“ Where to find it: Gerdesiaweg 480, 3061 RA Rotterdam

⏱ How to get there: Take Metro A towards Schiedam Centrum, Metro B towards Hoek van Holland Haven, or Metro C towards De Akkers and get off at Oostplein. From there it’s a mere 5 minutes walk to the pool. You can also take tram 24 or 21.

Other swimming pools in Rotterdam

Oostelijk Zwembad needed a special mention, but there are more options you want to try out for indoor swimming pools that offer you lessons, and a place for the children to get comfortable in the water.

  • Van Manenbad: Also called the Sportsfonden Rotterdam, they even have an outdoor swimming pool that you can enjoy during the spring and summer months. They also have workshops and fun activities planned for different occasions.
  • Recreatiecentrum Oostervant: A neighbourhood favourite because they have everything in one place! A bowling alley, a gym, a dancehall, and a sports hall for the basketball players, lovers of football, or even badminton. They also offer lessons for children, the elderly, water aerobics, and more.
  • Sportbedrijf Rotterdam: An establishment whose goal is to get Rotterdammers working out! They have different locations around the city, with their sports centres having indoor or outdoor swimming pools, gyms, and just about anything else to get you fit! Check out their website for the nearest one.
  • Optisport Health Club Rotterdam Alexander: a place where you and your little one can get swimming lessons together, a new concept they are exploring. They have a bar, and a gym so if you want to kick back and undo some of the fitness you’ve worked on or if you want to be more rigorous about it, this is the place to go.

Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Swimming pools in Amsterdam

Outdoor swimming pools in Amsterdam

W Amsterdam

W Amsterdam is a luxury boutique hotel in the heart of the capital. Their pool is not only for a refreshing swim, but to also take in the sights of the city. It is just a 4-minute walk from Dam square and is guaranteed to give you a hotel experience worthy of the splurge (for some of us anyway). They even have a spa where you can go to unwind those muscles, an indoor pool if the weather is not cooperating, and a rooftop lounge you can look over the city from!

swimming pools in the netherlands
Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Did not know Amsterdam could look so good! Image: @eioninnyc (Instagram)

If you have some serious money to splurge, and if you want to experience that breathtaking view of Amsterdam from their pool, this should definitely be on your list! Who wouldn’t want to experience Amsterdam this way?

πŸ“ Where to find it: Spuistraat 175, 1012 VN Amsterdam

⏱ How to get there: W Amsterdam is a short 15 minutes walk from Amsterdam Central Station.

Zwembad de Houtvaart

Are you passing by Haarlem, or live close by and looking for a good reason to visit the town? It is not too far from Amsterdam (which is why it’s mentioned here). Why not go to one of the heritage sites of the country (Rijksmonument), and take a dip in Haarlem’s only heated outdoor swimming pool? History nerds, this one is for you!

Zwembad de Houtvaart was founded in 1927 with the aim that people from different backgrounds could come together to enjoy a nice swim. The pool is heated using solar panels, so you can take a dip there in the morning while enjoying the sounds of tweeting birds (not on Twitter).

To use the swimming pool, you have to become a “friend” of the association taking care of the building. Luckily it doesn’t break the bank! It’s only €3,50 a year for adults and two euros for kids up to the age of 15. All of your membership costs go towards maintaining the building.

Check out this 3D animation of the building and pool!

Having been built in another era, you will be able to see how it was constructed so that men and women swam separately. They had their separate entrances and everything! This restriction was changed in the mid-60s and they haven’t looked back since. It’s a perfectly symmetrical pool, with architecture that reflects the pre-war era. It’s reminiscent of cubist styles, as seen at the Olympic Stadium in Amsterdam. But this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to this establishment’s history. Check out their website to learn more!

πŸ“ Where to find it: Piet Heinstraat 12, 2014 AR Haarlem

⏱ How to get there: Take Bus 14 from Harleem Station and get out at Westergracht. From there it’s only a two minutes walk to the pool.

Indoor swimming pools in Amsterdam

Noorderparkbad

Did you know that the Netherlands is home to the most beautiful swimming pool in the world? Yes, a swimming pool can be called beautiful, and I was shocked too! You wouldn’t think of describing a hole in the ground filled with water with that adjective, but it is apparently true.

According to Piscine Global in Lyon, France, Noorderparkbad in Amsterdam has a lot to offer its visitors not just in terms of fitness, but also architectural prowess. It has wide, airy rooms which are so inviting for everyone. It has a roof that collects rainwater, because the Netherlands has so much to spare, which is then stored, purified, and reused for the pool.

swimming pools in the netherlands
Swimming pools in the Netherlands: You can hide behind the sun here! Image: @randyfokke (Instagram)

But that’s not even half of it! This magnificent piece of architecture does not have only one indoor pool but two(!) of 25 metres each and a water slide! They even have offices, restaurants, and staff rooms β€” making it a true multidimensional space. Last but not least, they have a 25 metres outdoor pool, a sunbathing lawn, and a shallow pool for the little ones! Does it get any better than this?

Don’t believe me? Check this video out!

πŸ“ Where to find it: Sneeuwbalweg 5, 1032 VS Amsterdam

⏱ How to get there: From Amsterdam Central Station you can take Metro line 52 to Noorderpark. From there it is a 15 minutes walk to the pool.

Other swimming pools in Amsterdam

  • Zuiderbad: They have a whirlpool, steaming baths, and tanning salons at the location. They provide lessons for kids, toddlers, and adult swimming lessons. They also have family lessons, so you and your child can learn to swim together.
  • De Mirandabad: This place provides lessons for pregnant women, aqua sports, and more! If you’re looking to hone your swimming skills, they have lessons with a private trainer specifically for the more experienced swimmers.
  • SwimGym: Founded by the Dutch Olympic medal winner Johan Kenkhuis, go to this place if you want to train under professional supervision, and become a better competitive swimmer or triathlete.
  • Brediusbad Outdoor Pool: Another outdoor pool there for your enjoyment this spring and summer! But remember, it is a non-smoking pool, so be sure to put those cigarettes out before.
  • Sportfondsenbad Amsterdam-Oost: A place to enjoy, relax, or even train β€” they have Turkish steam baths, jacuzzi, and other recreational activities. According to their website, they are the oldest swimming pool in the Netherlands, where they will be turning 90 years old in June!
  • Sportplaza Mercator: They offer similar things to the others listed here, but they also have special programs for people with disabilities or injuries.

Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Swimming pools in Utrecht

Zwembad de Krommerijn

Zwembad de Krommerijn is in Utrecht and welcomes anyone looking to improve their fitness regime. This one is a very aesthetically pleasing swimming pool, but it is for more serious swimmers who are looking to work on their swimming techniques or fitness. They mean serious business, so they don’t have slides, toys, or anything of that sort.

It’s a 50 metres long pool, which has a roof that can be left open during the summer months. The best part is that they have a website in English, so you can understand everything about how their schedules change according to the season, the different activities they offer, and their prices.

swimming pools in the netherlands
Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Indoor pool or outdoor pool? How about both! Image: @joeptigchelaar (Instagram)

πŸ“ Where to find it: Weg naar Rhijnauwen 3, 3584 AD Utrecht

⏱ How to get there: Take tram 22 from Utrecht Central Station to stop De Kromme Rijn. From there, it’s just a two-minute walk to the pool.

Zwembad De Kwakel

A spacious swimming pool where you can practice your swimming skills, and play aqua sports, this place in Utrecht is ideal β€” but only if you’re over 18 years old. If you have any disabilities or any medical complaints, this place offers a form of therapeutic swimming lessons for you. It’s called Aqua Bodycare, and is available for anyone older than 21 years old.

They also offer Aqua Challenge, a complete muscle workout; Aqua Pilates, to improve your back and abdominal muscles; Aquarobics to enjoy with nice music in the background, and even warm water swimming pools.

You should also know that they have something called a mermaid swimming lesson where your Disney obsessed kid can even learn how to swim like Aerial or Poseidon! Pretty cool, right?

πŸ“ Where to find it: Paranadreef 10, 3563 AX Utrecht

⏱ How to get there: Take tram 1 from Utrecht Central Station to stop Paranadreef. From there, it’s just a two-minute walk to the pool.

Zwemschool Midden Utrecht

This is a swimming school that provides lessons for kids β€” you can sign them up when they’re as young as 4 and a half years old! You can sign up for an introductory course, and see how they enjoy it, and then make a longer commitment if they love it. Swimming is an essential skill to have for anybody, so why not start young?

πŸ“ Where to find it: Mytylweg 82, 3585 LK Utrecht

⏱ How to get there: Take tram 22 from Utrecht Central Station to stop Stadion Galgenwaard. From there, it’s a 10-minutes walk to the pool. The entrance to the pool is to the right across from the sports-court.

Other swimming pools in Utrecht

  • Zwembad Den Hommel: This one is open seven days a week, where their schedule shows you their activities, their opening timings on normal days, and on public holidays and weekends.
  • Zwembad Fletiomare: you can sign up for one day or buy a card that covers almost 25+ lessons! This flexibility lets you see if this is the right fit for you and your child.

Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Swimming pools in Tilburg

Openluchtbad Staalbergven

Nestled right in between theΒ Oisterwijk forests, with the trees and beautiful nature surrounding, this swimming pool is perfect for that lazy Sunday when you just want to kick back and relax with your family. It reopens for the summer on 20th April, when the sun will (hopefully) be out, and you can take a road trip to the small municipality of Oisterwijk.

swimming pools in the netherlands
Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Looks so serene, doesn’t it? Image: @aukjeleermakers (Instagram)

Are you rather looking to work on your swimming techniques? They also have a pool especially for the more serious swimmers, which is 50 metres long, 1,10-3,80 metres deep, with five lanes. They also have a one-metre long diving board for you to jump into the pool.

You can either get a day pass or buy a subscription for the whole year! Or you can even buy a family pass annually, and use it whenever you visit this amazing outdoor swimming pool. You can find more information on their website about the parking facilities, the prices for subscriptions and more!

πŸ“ Where to find it: Vennelaan 8, 5062 SR Oisterwijk

⏱ How to get there: Take bus 140 from Oisterwijk Station NS to Weverstraat. From there, walk 15 minutes to the swimming pool.

Recreatiebad Stappegoor

A place you can truly enjoy with the whole family! Recreatiebad Stappegoorhave aqua sports, slides, mermaid swimming, swimming lessons for everyone from the age of four to 50+, and even an outdoor swimming pool! So when the sun is out, you should be out as well, and enjoy a Saturday or Sunday when everybody wants to celebrate the week that has passed by or prepare for the week to come!

πŸ“ Where to find it: Stappegoorweg 1, 5022 DA Tilburg

⏱ How to get there: Take tram 1 from Tilburg Central Station to stop Stappegoor/IJsbaan. It’s just a one minute walk from the tram stop to the pool!

Sportcomplex Driebrucht

This innovative sports center is a lot of things in one β€” swim like a pro in their lanes, slide into the pool to get that speed going, enjoy their therapy pool with warmer waters, check out their whirlpool or steam cabins to wind down! They also have a cafe at the location where you can enjoy a snack or drink after your workout. Trying hard to juggle your kids and your workout? Don’t worry! They have a daycare center too.

πŸ“ Where to find it: Wagnerplein 1, 5011 LP Tilburg

⏱ How to get there: Take Bus line 5 to Busstation Noord. From there, it’s just a two minutes walk to the swimming pool.

Other swimming pools in Tilburg

Wait, these are not the only ones there is to go to!

  • Reeshof Zwembad: a perfect place for the kids because they expanded the toddler and kids swimming pool to add a water fountain. They added a tropical theme to it with different decorations to make the child feel like they are in another world. But that’s not all, they have something for everyone! Check out their website.
  • Club Pellikan: their swimming lessons are specially designed for children where they teach them how they can save themselves in case of an emergency. They also have a fitness center, and a cafe where you can spend time while your child learns essential skills in a safe and fun environment.

Swimming pools in the Netherlands: Swimming pools in the Hague

Before we start with this list, you should know that the municipality of the Hague introduced a swimming pass for anyone above the age of 14 after they have visited one of the municipality’s swimming pools. They currently have seven pools under their umbrella, all of which offer different facilities. With this pass, you can have entry into any of them, depending on the subscription you picked. Remember, you can’t go to these pools without your pass, so make sure to buy one online or carry a valid ID to buy one at the desk.

The rates for each of these pools are the same, and you can check it out at their website! They also have an English version, so it’s easy to get the information you need. Additionally, the websites for each of these pools have a virtual tour where you can see how they look and explore if this is the place for you. The swimming pools are:

  • Zuiderpark Zwembad: They have a water slide, a Turkish steam bath, and even a wild water creek!
  • Het Hofbad Zwembad: This one is not all fun and games. It has facilities for kids, but also the more serious swimmers amongst us.
  • Overbosch Zwembad: They have different pools for different activities like the recreational pool with extra heating, and a competition pool.
  • De Blinkerd Zwembad: This is a 25m long pool which is perfect for you to practice your swimming skills and techniques.
  • De Waterthor Zwembad: They have three different pools, one of which is Olympic-sized!
  • De Houtzagerij Zwembad: right in the centre of the city, they offer lessons for all age groups, where they have extra heating on the weekends.
  • Escamphof Therapeutic Pool: anybody who has medical and physical disabilities can go here where they can get support from experts. They specifically are designed for children or adults with one or more disabilities.

Has this article made you feel thirsty for summer yet? I sure am! Did we miss out on any swimming pools in the Netherlands? Let us know in the comments below!Β 

Feature Image: m IB/PublicDomainPictures

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in April 2019, and was fully updated in June 2021 for your reading pleasure.

Kavana Desaihttps://medium.com/@kavanadesai
Coping with the aftermath of her 3-year stint in the Netherlands, Kavana is a writer, content creator and editor for DutchReview. Hailing from India, she frequently blogs about the Netherlands, being Indian in the Netherlands, and everything in between. She envisions herself to one day be the youngest person to win that Nobel Prize for Literature (she is also not very humble but welcomes only constructive criticism). In the meantime, she fills her days with writing for DutchReview, writing her master's thesis on art theft, and writing fiction that will hopefully see the light of day soon.

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3 COMMENTS

  1. I find it strange that, given the generally mild weather in the Netherlands, there are no outdoor pools in The Hague. The are available in the UK, for example, and I know of heated ones in Helsinki and the Washington DC area that are open all year.

    • I agree. There used to be an outdoor pool at ‘t Fluitje. I am looking for a saline pool. Instead of a chlorine pool. Does this exist in Netherlands? I have found them in Germany and France.

  2. Blogs are very good ways of exchanging the information. “The Ultimate Guide to the Best Swimming Pools in the Netherlands”, I love to read blog and sometime some blogs give me so much of knowledge and this is one kind of those blogs. Thanks for sharing the blog.

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