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Best Spots For Swimming Amsterdam

Summer is coming, and with that comes our hopes for warm temperatures and long sunny days. One of our favorite summer pastimes in Amsterdam is swimming. Amsterdam and its surroundings have many great spots for swimming, from urban canals to natural lakes, from the beach to designated outdoor pools. There are some things to keep in mind when swimming in Amsterdam, and here, we will give you all the info you need.

Sunset over a wide canal with a tree and canal houses in Amsterdam

Best lakes for swimming Amsterdam

  • Vinkeveense Plassen: Located in Amsterdam South, it’s a very popular place for swimming, diving, and many water sports. There are various designated swimming areas and beaches.
  • Bosbaan in Amsterdamse Bos: There are many spots to swim here! You can look for Bosbaan and Grote Vijver (Great Pond). It’s also a great place to rent a SUP board and enjoy the park through the canals.
  • Het Twiske: Situated north of Amsterdam, Het Twiske has clean lakes and small beaches. It’s an ideal spot for combining an afternoon of swimming and picnicking.
Old Boat of Blue and White surrounded by trees
  • Sloterplas: Located in Amsterdam West, Sloterplas is a large lake with designated swimming areas and plenty of space to hang out in the sun. It’s also a very popular spot for barbecuing!
People sun bathing next to a river where people are swimming Amsterdam
  • De Nieuwe Meer: Located southwest of Amsterdam, De Nieuwe Meer is an excellent spot to sail your boat and stop for a swim. The weather could get windy, but there is nothing to worry about if it is good!

Best canals for swimming Amsterdam

  • Amstel River: Probably the most popular spot for open-water swimming, especially early in the morning (for the fan of Wim Hof). There are several access points along the river.
Sunset over the Amstel River in Amsterdam with the sunset reflecting in the water
  • Erasmuspark: Located in the Bos en Lommer district, this wide canal is another spot where people often swim, including a chance to prove your best diving skills from the white bridge crossing the canal
Canal in Erasmuspark with trees and people enjoying the sun sitting on the grass
  • Entrepothaven: Situated in the Eastern Docklands, this is a designated swimming area in the old industrial harbor. The main perk of this spot is that the water here is often much cleaner than in other parts of the city.
Sunset over water with modern buildings and a boat
  • Marineterrein: Another popular spot is Marineterrein. You can swim just 5 minutes away from the city center! There are platforms for easy access and where to lay down to dry.

Best beaches for swimming Amsterdam

  • IJburg Strand: This beach in IJburg district provides a nice place for swimming and sunbathing.
  • Blijburg aan Zee: Another beach located on the IJburg island, it’s currently under redevelopment, so it may not be accessible yet.
  • Zandvoort aan Zee: The most popular beach destination on the North Sea coast, Zandvoort is a 30-minute train ride from Amsterdam. It has swimming facilities, a long sandy beach, and many beach activities.
  • Bloemendaal aan Zee: This secluded beach is near Zandvoort and is well-known for its lively atmosphere and beach clubs. It is a great place to stay for lunch or dinner by the beach.
People walking down to the beach in Bloemendaal; blue sky and sand

Best pools for swimming Amsterdam:

  • Brediusbad: This amazing outdoor pool is located in the Spaarndammerbuurt neighborhood. It’s open in the summer and is perfect for adults and children.
  • Flevoparkbad: This spacious outdoor swimming pool in Flevopark provides multiple pools (such as a 50-meter pool, a diving pool, and a children’s pool).
  • De Mirandabad: There are indoor and outdoor pools here. The outdoor area has a large pool, a children’s pool, and sunbathing areas. It’s perfect for a summer day out with the family.
  • Noorderparkbad: Located in Noorderpark, this beautiful outdoor pool is very popular in the summer.

I love swimming in Amsterdam: biking towards the lake, bringing some snacks and cool drinks, some music, and a great group of friends, and swimming until the sun goes down (sometimes even until 10 pm) is one of my favorite things to do in Amsterdam. But it’s important to remember that Amsterdam is still a big city, and there are several factors to consider when swimming in Amsterdam. Here are some considerations:

Water Quality

Before swimming, it is best to check the latest water quality reports. You can find them on local authorities’ websites or Waternet. Ideally, you want to avoid swimming after heavy rainfall to ensure the water is clean and safe.


Amsterdam is a great place for swimming and boat tours, so be careful of boat traffic. Avoid swimming in trafficked areas and stick to designated swimming spots. Also, make sure you have good entry and exit spots before diving in to avoid being in the position of not being able to climb back up to the shore.


It is always best to swim where there is a bit of current. Avoid stagnant water, where the water quality might be lower. And always shower after swimming!

Legal and Environmental Considerations

Note that not everywhere is allowed to swim. If you are not sure, check the local regulations for possible restrictions.

Swimming in Amsterdam is a great way to relax after a morning spent visiting some of the city’s best museums, such as Moco, or any of the hidden gems, such as Straat. And if you happen to be in Amsterdam for more than three days, afternoon swimming is a great addition to the three-day itinerary.