Arguably the most famous swimming hole in all of Texas, this Lone State treasure is filled entirely with water from nearby natural springs and temperatures hovering between 68 to 70 degrees allow for optimum year-round swimming. It draws both a local and visiting crowd, with its accessibility making it particularly popular with downtowners. The pool itself spans three acres and there’s a wealth of space on the sloped banks to dry off, sunbathe, or catch up with pals. Put your partying in context with a pre-swim visit to Splash!, a family-friendly educational exhibit where patrons can learn about the history and biology of the springs and the aquifer that feeds it.
Know before you go: There’s no longer a reservation required, and the pool is open daily from 5 am to 10 pm. The daily entry fee is $5 for residents and $9 for non-residents.
Where to eat/drink: You can still enjoy a picnic on the grounds before entering the pool—Whole Foods’ flagship is on North Lamar and has plenty of ready-made options. El Alma, downtown’s most popular Mexican restaurant patio for over a decade now, hawks delicious enchiladas, rellenos, and tacos a few blocks away.