Who would go wild swimming? Two types mostly. The super-fit youngsters who like surfing & kayaking. And the ‘English eccentric’, who gets up at 5am to have a bracing dip in the sea, often on Christmas morning.
If you like the idea of wild swimming but prefer to keep your feet on the ground, read the wild swimming walk books for Cornwall, Devon or London (by the famed wild swimmers of Hampstead). These books are by wild swimmers, who share their favourite walks that feature waterfalls, secret lakes, river meadows and sandy seaside secret beaches.
Wild swimming no doubt has some health benefits, but obviously it’s not for everyone. And you really have to know what you’re doing, as it can be dangerous with currents etc (don’t go if you are not fit).
Visit Wild Swimming, the site with all the expert info from those in the know. You’ll find all the safety tips you need to learn, and find places to go wild swimming. You’ll also learn that Florence Nightingale and Charles Dickens were enthusiastic wild swimmers.
Swim Wild is a book by by brothers Jack, Calum and Robbie who have been swimming together their whole lives. From tackling the 145km River Eden to setting the world record for swimming in the Arctic, these guys know wild swimming inside-out and back-to-front. Provides advice, reassurance and inspiration.
Another idea if you like the thought of wild swimming but want something a bit ‘less wild’, is to discover one our many outdoor lidos. Popular in the 50s, many of these outdoor swimming pools have gone into disrepair, but quite a few remain open. The Outdoor Swimming Society lists them all, many are in London or Bristol. There’s one in Devon that was rescued by the local community, who invite people for a freezing cold morning swim, followed by homemade cake! All sounds very English, doesn’t it?