Calgary's top outdoor pools, spray parks and swimming holes

It's the first day of summer and many of Calgary's outdoor pools have opened just in time to kick off the season. Here is a list of our favourite outdoor pools, spray parks and swimming holes.

Send us your favourite swimming spots to add to this list!

Kids play at Lake Bonavista in southeast Calgary. (Facebook)

It's the first day of summer and many of Calgary's outdoor swimming pools have opened just in time to kick off the season. Here is a list of our favourite outdoor pools, spray parks and swimming holes.

  • Do you have a favourite wading spot or swimming hole? Send your ideas to, photos to, or leave a comment below.

Outdoor pools

The Mount Pleasant pool in northwest Calgary is heated and has lifeguards on duty at all times. (COSPA)

The Calgary Outdoor Swimming Pools Association (COSPA) operates seven outdoor pools on behalf of the City of Calgary. It's 80-day season kicked off on Saturday and goes until Sept. 5. Full details are on their website, but here's a quick snapshot:

  • N.W.: Bowview, Highwood, Mount Pleasant
  • S.E.: Forest Lawn, Millican Ogden
  • S.W.: South Calgary, Stanley Park

Splash parks and wading pools

Spray parks are a great way to keep the kids occupied. (Janet S. Carter/The Free Press/Associated Press)

This summer is already shaping up to be a scorcher. So slap some sunscreen on the kids and head out with your water babies.

  • Riley Park wading pool
  • Eau Claire Plaza wading pool and spray park
  • Chinook Winds Spray Park, a short drive away in Airdrie

Bowness Park is currently under construction and will be opening mid-summer. Prairie Winds is closed for the 2016 season.

Community lakes

Lake Bonavista is a lovely spot in southeast Calgary. (Facebook)

You'll either need to live there, or have friends who do. But the communities of Arbour Lake, Auburn Bay, Chaparral, Coral Springs, Midnapore, McKenzie Lake, Lake Bonaventure, Lake Bonavista, and Sundance all offer access to the water. 

Other swimming holes

Sikome Lake in Fish Creek Provincial Park has long been a popular spot, but it'll now cost you. Fees will range from $2 to $10 for a day pass when the lake opens for the season on June 25.

For some free family fun, head over to Chestermere, where Anniversary Park boasts its own sandy beach, a lakeside promenade and picnic spaces.

Meanwhile, over at CBC Edmonton, the gang at the Radio Active afternoon show put together a list of northern Alberta's favourite 'watering holes'.

Heat safety

While you're out splashing around, health officials want you to stay cool. AHS offers these tips for a heat-safe summer:

  • Consider rescheduling outdoor activities to cooler hours of the day.
  • Take frequent breaks and spend time indoors at home or in cooled public spaces like malls or indoor pools.
  • Drink plenty of water and other non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated beverages to stay hydrated.
  • Do not leave any person or pet inside a closed vehicle for any amount of time. Even minutes of high-temperature exposure can be harmful or deadly.
  • Apply a sunscreen of at least SPF 30 at least 20 minutes before heading outdoors. Be sure the product blocks both UVA and UVB rays, and reapply frequently (as directed on product label).
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses (with a UVA/UVB CSA-certified seal).
  • Wear light-coloured, long-sleeved shirts and pants, and seek shade.
  • Monitor yourself and your loved ones for symptoms of heat stroke or exhaustion, including high body temperature, lack of sweat, confusion, fainting, and unconsciousness. Seek medical attention immediately for anyone feeling faint.


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