If it’s hot and if you’ve got little ones then splash pads and outdoor pools can be a godsend, a fun activity that keeps them cooled down and outside. Here’s our guide to our favourite places for a splash or a swim outside in Wales.
P.S. If you’ve got any tips or faves that we’ve missed out on then please let us know on social media or the comments section below!
Victoria Park Splash Pad, Cardiff
Sprays, jets, a tipping water bucket and a tunnel are spread across the 3 zones of this splash pad designed for toddlers, juniors and families. This brand new facility only opened in June 2016 and can be found in the beautiful Victoria Park in the Canton area of Cardiff. Free to use.
Ammanford Park Splash Pad, Carmarthenshire
This splash pad opened in 2013 and was a hit straight away after replacing the old paddling pool in Ammanford Park. Less than 10 minutes from Ammanford train station. Free to use. There’s also paddling pools down the road at Crown Park and Parc Howard in Llanelli.
Cyfarthfa Park Splash Pad, Methyr Tydfil
Cyfarthfa Park has absolutely everything for a great day out: a big castle, an art gallery, a mini railway, a playground, cafes, 160 acres of parkland and since 2013 an awesome splash pad. Free to use.
Drift Park Water Play Area, Rhyl, Denbighshire
Located right on the waterfront in Rhyl, this water play area has fountains and paddling pools. There is an entry charge of £2.
Blackpill Lido, Swansea
Swansea’s very own outdoor water park, Blackpill Lido is found between the lovely Clyne Gardens and the sea. There’s also a picnic area, a playground, and a cafe. Free to use.
Rhos-on-Sea Paddling Pool, Conwy
This small pool comes with a playground and cafes and shops galore, as it’s not far from the promenade. Conwy has another three paddling pools across the county: Penmaenmawr, Craig Y Don (Llandudno), Llanfairfechan. All free to use.
Morgan Jones Park, Caerphilly
Situated in the Green Flag Award winning park, the ‘Wetter the Better’ aqua splash pad provides a truly unique summer play experience. You’ll also find a play area, a maze, and a wildflower meadow there. Free to use.
Lido Ponty, Pontypridd, RCT
The recently renovated pool is the National Lido for Wales and is a must visit. It has a splash pool with a water umbrella and a play area for the kids. As well as this there’s heated swimming lanes, a visitor centre and a cafe for older visitors. It’s recommended that you book online before you visit, as it’s very popular, and entry is still currently free.
Beaumaris Paddling Pool, Anglesey
There is a paddling pool for younger children behind the RNLI building next to the sea in Beaumaris. There are picnic tables as well as a play area for children and plenty of shops nearby to buy ice cream in the warm weather. You could also take a walk down the pier and catch crabs with a fishing line.
Swimming Safety and Splash Pad Tips
Remember to bring a towel and a change of clothes if required, as most splash pads and paddling pools don’t have changing facilities. Why not bring a picnic too? A lot of these facilities are in parks, so check our easy picnic ideas, if you want some inspiration and tips.
Although paddling pools aren’t very deep and splash pads are designed not to have sitting water, children should always be supervised around water. Netmums has some top tips for swimming with your baby.
Alternatives to Splash Pads in Wales
If you’ve got a child aged 16 and under, did you know that they can swim for free at your local authority swimming pool in Wales during school holidays and at weekends? Free swimming also applies to people over 60 outside of school holidays, so this could be a cheap weekend activity for grandparents and grandchildren to do once it’s term time again. Sport Wales has more info on the scheme.
Something for the older kids and the adventurers amongst you, Visit Wales has 10 spots around the country that are great for wild swimming. While these places are free to swim, please read up on swimming safely with the Wild Swimming Code by Natural Resources Wales as well as information on wildswimming.co.uk and nationalwatersafety.org.uk before tipping your toe in.
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