When the sweltering heat sets in, there’s nothing better than a rejuvenating, shady hike. Sure, it’s always lovely to visit Barton Springs and Deep Eddy Pool, but those aren’t the only places to keep cool. Escape from the crowds with a peaceful riverside stroll through the Bull Creek Greenbelt. Austin’s most refreshing hike will lead you straight to the beautiful Bull Creek swimming hole.

Have you been to the Bull Creek swimming hole in ATX before? How marvelous! Looking for more ways to soak up the sun? These are the 11 best swimming holes near Austin.

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Bull Creek Swimming

What are some other swimming holes near Austin, Texas?

In addition to the Bull Creek swimming hole, McKinney Falls is another beloved swimming hole near Austin. Located on the southeastern edge of Austin, McKinney Falls State Park provides a nice break from the hustle and bustle of the city. On the main trail, you can find this small waterfall gushing over the rocks. Despite its diminutive stature, the water pressure is strong, especially after a good rain! This is a very popular swimming hole, however, so plan on visiting early in the morning, ideally mid-week, in order to beat the crowds... and the sweltering Texas heat!

Of course, one cannot discuss amazing swimming holes near Austin without mentioning the iconic Hamilton Pool. This 50-foot waterfall in Travis County is one of the most popular and treasured places in Texas. Hamilton Pool features a cerulean blue pool located beneath an expansive limestone grotto. In addition to being a beautiful waterfall swimming hole, it's also a walk-behind waterfall, which only adds to its appeal. For the best waterfall swimming experience, visit after a healthy rain! Advanced reservations are required, which helps keep the area clean and less crowded.

What are some other waterfall hikes in Austin?

One of our favorite short-and-sweet waterfall hikes near ATX is at Westcave Outdoor Discovery Center. In addition to being absolutely beautiful, Westcave Outdoor Discovery Center also boasts a secret grotto that's endlessly enchanting, and is sure to become your new favorite place in Texas. This tall fall plunges into a cold pool surrounded by verdant greenery reminiscent of Middle Earth. The best part? All that stands between you and this Texas oasis is a 15-minute guided stroll.