When you think of taking a swim in Southern California, the first thing that comes to mind is heading to the ocean. Instead of spending a day at the beach like everyone else, how about heading out on a scenic hike that will lead you to some unexpected and spectacular SoCal swimming holes?! Here are 10 epic spots in Southern California where you will find the perfect place to refresh yourself in the water on a hot summer day.
1. Aztec Falls
Located in the San Bernardino Mountains, you will enjoy a short hike along the Pacific Crest Trail before you reach this splendid spot to take a swim.
2. Switzer Falls
Downstream from Switzer Falls Picnic area in the San Gabriel Mountains you will find a small swimming hole that's perfect for a dip in the water.
3. Take a swim under the Bridge to Nowhere
Tucked inside the San Gabriel Mountains along the East fork of the San Gabriel River you will find this popular swimming hole under the Bridge to Nowhere. It may not be large enough to do laps, but it's the perfect spot for a quick jump in the water to help you cool off.
4. Cedar Creek Falls
This spectacular spot outside of San Diego in Ramona is a hidden gem. A pleasant 2.5 mile trail will lead you down to Cedar Creek Falls where you will be greeted by this heavenly pool of water.
5. Malibu Creek Rock Pool
This is a spot the whole family can enjoy as it's an easy 1.5 mile hike to reach the swimming hole. Once you get there, you'll be in awe of the volcanic rock formations that surround you.
6. Cooper Canyon Falls
Located in the Angeles National Forest, you can take the scenic Burkhart Trail to reach this refreshing swimming hole in the middle of your hike.
7. Solstice Canyon
Reward yourself with a dip in the cool water at Solstice Canyon in Malibu at this small swimming hole along one of the trail routes. Weekends can get pretty crowded, but you may have this spot to yourself during a weekday afternoon.
8. Tenaja Falls
At the top of Tenaja Falls in the Cleveland National Forest you will find this pleasant spot along the Tenaja Falls trail.
9. Red Rock Pool
Take a short half-mile hike on the Red Rock trail in the Los Padres National Forest to reach this popular swimming spot surrounded by stunning scenery.
10. Hermit Falls
This is a popular destination in the San Gabriel Mountains for hiking and taking a swim at the base of Hermit Falls. Get here early on the weekend to to avoid the crowds or plan on a weekday trip to get this spot to yourself. Although cliff diving is a popular activity here, stick to hiking down to the swimming hole as that's a much safer plan.
Wow – what a perfect way to spend the day! Where are your favorite spots to take a swim in Southern California?