Given the record breaking temps today and tomorrow I’m reposting this guide to Oaktown oases, with some updates for outdated links and schedules. Enjoy!
It’s hot. Too hot. This is why I left L.A. many years ago. Well… just one of the long list of reasons really.
But back to my point. It’s expected to top out near 90 today, so if you’re like me and you’re melting into a puddle of gritty discontent, here are a few sweet spots to cool you down and freshen you up!
- Lake Temescal – For some, the thought of swimming in non-chlorinated water is not appealing (I’m thinking of my boyfriend’s daughter who said, “EWW! it’s slimy!”) But for me, it’s simply the best. No burning eyes, no itching skin, and you get to swim with the ducks & fishes. What could be better than that?? See last year’s post Sum Sum Summertime! for more detail and the history of this urban oasis.
$3 for beach access; $2 for kids/seniors; parking can cost extra
Open daily 5am to 10pm; lifeguards on duty 11am to 6pm
- Lyons Pool (Dimond Park) – This outdoor pool set amidst old growth oaks & buckeyes is heated year round and is delicious to step into, especially on cool evenings or foggy mornings. Serious lap-swimmers seem frustrated by its unconventional lanes and warm temperature, but I think this spot is just right, and nowhere near as crowded as Temescal.
$5 to swim; $4 with multi-pass
public recreational swim: 2:45-4:45pm Saturdays only
lap swim: 6:30-9:30am / 11am-2:30pm / 6-8pm M-F (schedule varies slightly on different days of week so check link); 11am-2:30pm Sat/Sun
- Trefethen Aquatic Center (Mills College) – Another lovely outdoor pool complete with hot tub and lawn areas for lounging, I haven’t been to this one in awhile but used to go frequently when friends lived in San Leandro. I’ve heard the pool isn’t chlorinated but uses another technique (oxygenation?), but I can’t confirm this. This one’s also a tad more expensive than other options, but many folks claim this is the nicest pool in Oakland.
$7 to swim; $5.60 with multi-pass
public recreational swim: 5:30pm-7:30pm M-F; 12pm-2:45pm Sat/Sun
lap swim: 6:30-8:45am / 12-2pm / 5:30-7:30pm M-F (schedule varies slightly on different days of week so check link; NOTE: that Mills Pool will be closed the weekend of 5/17-18 for special events. )
- Temescal Pool – This one’s a north Oakland favorite for it’s year round heated waters and easy access location. Featuring salinated water which means less chlorine (yay!) and lots of props to modify your swim routine (kickboards, fins, etc) this pool is extremely popular and can be quite crowded when the weather’s nice.
$3 for rec swim/ $6 for lap swim; discounts with multi-pass
public swim: 2:45-4:45pm Sat only
lap swim: 6:30-8:45am / 12:30-2:30pm 5-7pm M-F; 11am-2:30pm Sat/Sun
- Roberts Pool (Roberts Regional Recreation Area) – Another glorious heated outdoor pool, right in the middle of a redwood grove. I only put this one last because, sad to say, I haven’t been here yet. But from the descriptions I’ve read, it sounds like best spot for a lazy summer day of play. Fewer lap swim hours and far more public/recreational swim hours.
$3 for public swim ($2 for kids/seniors); lap swim is $3.50 or $2.50 with multi-pass
public recreational swim: 11am – 6pm Sat/Sun
lap swim: 7:15-8:15pm M-Th