Challenge: A cycle tour of London’s outdoor swimming pools and bathing ponds.
Details: Cycle 40km and paddle your little hearts out swimming in 7 of London’s finest outdoor watering holes. Kind of like 8lidosin8days, but this time 7 lidos in ONE DAY. Boom!
Meet at Hampstead Heath mixed pond and work your way down through London. You can swim as little or as much as you like but would aim to spend half an hour at each pool, which includes chaining bikes up, changing and getting back on bikes. So really 20 minutes swimming – don’t worry- that will be enough, what with 7 different pools!
Transport? On yer bike. Itinerary with timings is below.
When? Any day between May and October. Some of the pools are only open to non-members during these months. Check opening times of pools while you’re planning the day as they are subject to change.
Bring? Bike, helmet, lock, swimming costume, goggles, towel, cash for food and fees, warm clothes for afterwards, bike lights just in case, phone mount for handlebars. We kept our wet costume on the whole time and just put shorts and t-shirts over the top. Saves you time in changing.
Food & drink? Most of the lidos have a café. Make sure you have a hearty breakfast and you’ll want a big lunch!
Cost? Pool entry costs £2-£5 – some can be friendly and give you a discount but it’s actually quite nice to support these pools.
eXerK 52in52 video:
- Hampstead Heath Mixed Pond(Mixed, mens and ladies, pond, outdoor, unheated, £2)
9am: Meet and greet — 9.10: Swim — 9.40: Back on bikes — Cycle 10 mins (1.5km)
- Parliament Hill Lido, NW5 1NB (60m, pool, outdoor unheated, £2.50)
9.55: Meet. Coffee and cake in the poolside café (not allowed in pool until 10 anyway)
10.15: Swim — 10.45. Back on bikes — Cycle 45 mins (7.7km)
- London Fields Lido, E8 3EU (50m, pool, outdoor, heated, £4.75)
11.30: Meet. Swim — 12.00: Back on bikes — Cycle 35 min (7.2km)
- Oasis, WC2H 9AG (25m indoor, heated, 27.5m, pool, outdoor, heated, £5.30)
12.25: Lunch at a café just around the corner
13.25: Swim — 14.00: Back on bikes — Cycle 30 min (4.5km)
- Serpentine, W2 2UH (100m, pond, outdoor, unheated, open water, £4.60)
14.30. Meet. Swim — 15.00. Back on bikes — Cycle 45 min (10km)
- Brockwell Lido, SE24 0PA (50m, pool, outdoor , unheated, £3.05)
15.45. Meet at Brockwell Lido for coffee and cake (amazing carrot cake)
16.15: Swim — 16.45: Back on bikes — Cycle 30 mins (5km)
- Tooting Bec Lido, SW16 1RU (91.5m, pool, outdoor, unheated, £6.70)
17.15: Meet. Grand finale swim
6.30 – PUUUBBBBBB – The Wheatsheaf, SW17 7PG
For more outdoor pools in London head to London’s top outdoor pools.