Texas summers are hot, humid, and endless it seems. Fortunately, Austin residents can seek respite in the cooler waters of local swimming holes. Pack your car with pool floats, coolers full of beverages and snacks, and towels and great ready to head out for a day of fun, relaxation, and relief from the heat. Check out our list of favorite places to swim in Austin and how you can prepare your vehicle for the trip.
Barton Springs Pool – Austin
Located in Zilker Park, this three-acre swimming hole is fed from underground springs which means the temperatures will always be a cool 68 to 70 degrees. Open every day–except Thursdays for cleaning, from 8 AM to 8 PM. Admission fees will vary based on age and residence. This pool is one of the best family-friendly Austin swimming holes. Kids will enjoy wading in the water and searching for the infamous endangered Barton Spring Salamander, hunt for crawfish, and watch various ducks waddle by. The pool is equipped with diving boards, shallow area for splashing around, and lifeguards on duty. Public restrooms are available. Even better? Enjoy a swim under the stars after 8 PM with no entrance fee.
Blue Hole – Georgetown
Just 30 minutes north of Austin lies the beautiful Blue Hole Park surrounded by lush greens and residences. Located on the South San Gabriel River is a picturesque lagoon called Blue Hole lined by limestone hills. In addition to swimming, Blue Hole offers hiking trails, fishing, picnic areas, and public restrooms. Cliff jumping is prohibited and strictly enforced. Swimmers should take caution; the City of Georgetown does not check for bacteria or water flow. Entrance and parking are free.
Hamilton Pool Preserve – Dripping Springs
Located 40 minutes West of Austin, in Dripping Springs and ¾ of a mile upstream from the Pedernales River, is Hamilton Creek and its fallen grotto complete with a 50-foot waterfall surrounded by unique rock formations and greenery. The trail to the pool is a slightly challenging ¼-mile hike with steep, uneven ground. Spend the morning hiking the trails in the park, then go for a swim in the pool or take a relaxing break in the cave-like area behind the waterfall. Reservations are required to enter this swimming hole and swimming is not always guaranteed. Conditions may vary depending on bacteria levels and recent rainfalls. Educational programs are offered, and guided tours are available on Saturdays beginning at 10 AM, limited to the first 20 people. Cost is $11 per vehicle. Picnic tables and portable restrooms are also available for public use.
Kraus Springs – Spicewood
Located in Spicewood, an hour outside of Austin, you’ll find a 115-acre property owned by the Krause family. This unique area is a favorite as it is home to 32 springs including a waterfall, man-made wading pool fed by several of the springs, one of which that flows into Lake Travis. Krause Springs is one of the cleanest natural Texas springs with water that is constantly flowing. This location is great for thrill-seekers who enjoy cliff jumping and rope swinging. For the less daring, enjoy the day by relaxing in a pool float. For those seeking tranquility, take a stroll through the butterfly gardens complete with windchimes and water features for a calming-effect. Restrooms equipped with sinks, stalls, and showers are available, as well. Make a weekend trip out of your visit as Krause Springs also has a designated camping area, including RV campsites. Burn barrels are provided for campers and barbecue pits are available for day use. Gates are open from 9 AM to 9 PM and admission for visitors over 12 is $8 and children ages 4-11 are $5. Children under 4 are free.
Drive with Peace of Mind
With so many natural springs and lakes in Austin for swimming, you could spend every weekend this summer exploring each one! Whether you’re headed for a quick drive down to Zilker Park or out to Krause Springs, make sure your vehicle is prepared to handle the heat and humidity. While you want to keep cool in this heat, so too does your vehicle’s engine. By having maintenance services performed on your vehicle, such as a cooling flush to prevent overheating, an Air Conditioning Inspection to keep you cool, and regular oil changes, you’ll likely be able to prevent any unpleasant surprises along the ride. Summer should be spent having fun with family and friends, not waiting for a tow truck on the side of the road. Sun Auto Service can help keep your vehicle running so you have more time to relax and enjoy time taking a dip in one of the many refreshing Texas swimming holes. No matter which direction you’re headed in, there’s a Sun Auto Service location near you. Stop in before your next trip!