Outdoor swimming spots and sea pools in Cornwall

The historic Jubilee Pool Lido Penzance Cornwall England UK

The historic Jubilee Pool Lido Penzance Cornwall England UK - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

If you fancy dipping your toe into outdoor swimming - where is nicer than Cornwall to dive in? We pick some of the best lidos and sea pools in the Duchy for a spot of al fresco swimming - check their websites for information about their reopening plans.

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1. Jubilee Pool, Penzance

The Jubilee Pool reopened in 2016 after a six-figure revamp needed to repair severe storm damage. This stunning Art Deco sea pool originally opened in May 1935, the year of King George V’s Silver Jubilee.

The pool is open daily from 10.30am - 6pm (7pm in August), and on Tuesday evenings until 8pm. Entrance is £5 for adults and £3.50 for children. Under 4’s may attend for free.

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2. Bude Sea Pool, Summerleaze Beach

Locals were up in arms when the future of this historic 90m tidal pool appeared to be under threat because of cuts. The town now has a community group to take care of its maintenance and the pool is free to enter despite it costing £40,000 to run. From sunbathers and triathletes, to endurance trainers and kayakers, you’ll find many Bude residents and tourists making the most of Bude’s number one attraction.

3. Chapel Rock Pool, Perranporth

The Cornish coast has many smaller tidal pools, one of which can be found at Perranporth beach. It provides respite from the Atlantic waves and is an ideal spot for children to swim in at low tide. Entry is free and the pool can be easily accessed from the beach when the tide is out.

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4. Tidal Pool at Porthtowan Pool

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The tidal pool at Porthtowan is a well-kept secret. It’s private and secluded and the perfect spot to take a dip in clear waters when the beach is busy. The pool is completely submerged at high tide and access can be difficult as the steps down from the cliffside have eroded away. We recommend wearing shoes to clamber across the rocks from the beach to the pool.

5. The Rock Pool at Treyarnon Bay

This semi-natural rock pool is large enough for swimming and is a great spot for snorkelling. A wall of concrete maintains the water level when the tide goes out and it is refilled with fresh sea water every time the tide draws in. The pool is easily accessed from the beach. Beware - it can be busy in peak season!

6. Tidal Bathing Pool, Polperro

Nestled at the foot of Chapel Cliff, you can swim with a difference in nature’s own infinity pool. The Daily Telegraph once listed it as one of the best outdoor swimming spots in Great Britain and it’s easy to see why. Although access is tricky with steps carved into the cliff (please proceed with caution), the good news is it’s relatively quiet all year round.