6 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

via Facebook

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.

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.

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.

Stebelton Park at Rock Mill

via Fairfield County Parks

Speaking of splashing, how about getting your feet wet with a spectacular view of a waterfall? At Rock Mill, located in Stebelton Park at Rock Mill, you can check out the centuries-old mill, the beautiful waterfall, and cool off on the banks of the Hocking River.

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.

Deer Creek State Park

View this post on Instagram

Tried to get a tan

A post shared by Treesey Neal (@treesey82) on


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.

    A daily Columbus email you'll actually love.

    Every morning we compile the best of Columbus news & events and deliver it in a quick 5 minute read that sets you up with everything you need to be a well informed Columbusian. Columbusite. Cbussian? Whatever, give it a try, you'll love it.

    You have Successfully Subscribed!