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10 Natural Swimming Holes To Splash Around In This Summer In Central Ohio

Swimming pools are great and all, but they can’t stack up to the beauty of an outdoor swimming hole.

As the temperatures rise and the sun becomes less forgiving, Central Ohioans look forward to one thing to help fend off the heat; a good swim. But sometimes the local pool just ain’t gonna cut it and we find ourselves looking for something a bit more refreshing. Maybe something with a stunning view.

Fortunately, we’ve got some beautiful spots just a short drive from Columbus. From lakes to rivers and waterfalls, there’s no shortage of gorgeous bodies of water to get our splash on.

Alum Creek State Park

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Constructed in the early 1970s due to the Flood Control Act of 1962, the area itself has a history that goes back even further, serving as an important pathway for the Underground Railroad. Today, the beach offers a changing area, bathrooms and a concession stand.
Where: 3615 S Old State Rd, Delaware, OH 43015
Website: a href=””>Alum Creek State Park

Lake Logan State Park

Considered one of the best fishing spots in Ohio, the lake extends 400 acres wide. The north shore provides a 527-foot public beach, allowing easy access for swimming and fishing. Spend the morning exploring Hocking Hills and spend the afternoon cooling off at the beach.
Where: 30443 Lake Logan Rd, Logan, OH 43138
Website: Lake Logan State Park

Shale Hollow Park

via Preservation Parks Delaware County

This crystal clear water is the perfect place to let the kiddos splash around. It’s not incredibly deep and the creek is very shaded and peaceful. There’s also a cool rope bridge and some trails to explore.
Where: 6320 Artesian Run, Delaware, OH 43015
Website: Shale Hollow Park

Buckeye Lake State Park

If you’re looking for a quick weekend escape that comes with gorgeous views and plenty of opportunity to get in the water, look no further than Buckeye Lake. Located just 30 minutes outside of Columbus, Buckeye Lake has two public swimming areas that have parking and bathrooms. Fairfield Beach on the south side of the lake and Crystal Beach on the north side of the lake.
Where: 2871 Liebs Island Rd, Millersport, OH 43046
Website: Buckeye Lake State Park

Lake Hope State Park

Lake Hope is such an underrated park. It’s got a 600-foot beach and beautiful scenery, all just a little over an hour away from downtown Columbus. If you want to make a whole weekend out of your swimming adventure, you can set up shop at the campground or rent a nearby cabin.
Where: 27331 OH-278, McArthur, OH 45651
Website: Lake Hope State Park

Deer Creek State Park

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Looking for a little extra space to spread out? Head to Deer Creek State Park’s 1,700-foot beach. You can check for water quality alerts through the Ohio State Parks website.
Where: 20635 State Park Road 20, Mt Sterling, OH 43143
Website: Deer Creek State Park

Buck Creek State Park Beach

Surrounded by rich agricultural lands, this region was home to both Native Americans and early pioneers. Buck Creek State Park features a large reservoir for unlimited horsepower boating and swimming. The park features a 2,400-foot sand beach with swimming permitted in designated areas. Let’s aren’t permitted on the beach at Buck Creek, so be sure to leave your four-legged friends at home. The beach is open from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Where: 1976 Buck Creek Ln, Springfield, OH 45502
Website: Buck Creek State Park Beach

Mineral Springs Lake Resort

This 104-acre mineral spring-fed lake offers 5.5 miles of pristine shoreline. Although the campground doesn’t have any spots currently available, the beach park is open to the public. You can swim, enjoy the inflatables, rent kayaks, and so much more.
Where: 160 Bluegill Rd, Peebles, OH 45660
Website: Mineral Springs Lake Resort

Long’s Retreat

Splash around at the beach at Long’s Retreat all day long for just $5. The beach offers a splash pad, a tube slide, and diving boards, as well as plenty of Sandy areas to stretch out and relax. For an additional fee, you can rent canoes and paddle boats, ride a carousel, or even get in a round of Minigolf.
Where: 50 Bell Hollow Rd, Latham, OH 45646
Website: Long’s Retreat

Madison Lake State Park

Located within the Darby Plains of Ohio, Madison Lake is a very peaceful destination for an afternoon swim. The beach offers 300 feet of sandy bliss for swimmers. This is one of the more primitive spots on the list, with no fancy water slides or inflatables. But the serenity is what makes a day at Madison Lake so perfect.
Where: 4860 E Park Dr, London, OH 43140
Website: Madison Lake State Park

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