Wild Things Publishing has just released the second edition of Wild Swimming by Daniel Start. The book features hidden swimming sites in Britain’s rivers, lakes and waterfalls with 150 new locations added to the latest edition. The book also lists new campsites, pubs, and boat trips, and includes new information for children and families.
[tl:gallery size=460×547]We asked author Danny Start to list his five favourite wild swimming sites. They are:
River Ouse, Anchor Inn, Sussex
The River Ouse winding through the Sussex Downs is one of the most beautiful in the south east. You can picnic at Barcombe Mills in open meadows or head upstream to the remote riverside Anchor Inn. Hire one of its blue paddle boats and row or swim through more than two miles of remote countryside.
Stay at: Heaven Farm
The Stour, Pamphill, Dorset
The Stour is one of England’s iconic rural rivers. At Pamphill the river opens up in wide meanders with a deep ford and bridge. Float downstream for miles on the sun-dappled current as mayflies dance and fronds of water buttercup tickle your toes. Follow the path upstream from the small car park outside outside Pamphill village, near Wimbourne Minster.
Stay at Wilksworth Farm
Grantchester Meadows, Cambridge
Take tea in Grantchester and enjoy a length of river that has changed little since Edwardian times. It was here that Rupert Brooke, Virginia Woolfe and other brilliant minds gathered to camp, picnic and swim naked. Anywhere along the meadows is good for swimming, particularly on the outside of the bends where the river deepends, often to over six foot, so just lay down your picnic blanket, pour cream on your strawberries and soak up the by-done atmosphere.
Stay at Cherry Hinton Caravan Club Site
Tongue Pot, Eskdale, Lake District
The Esk is a delightful mountain stream that tumbles down from England’s highest mountain peak – Scafell Pike. ‘Tongue Pot’ is the most beautiful of the many pools, just beneath a packhorse bridge in a rocky cleft, about an hour’s walk from the road, a long emerald pool has formed beneath a waterfall at the meeting of two rivers. A white pebble beach shelves down on one side and an oak tree overhangs.
Loch Coruisk, Isle of Skye, Scotland
A remote freshwater loch on Skye, the Cuillin reflected in its peaty water, which is accessible only by boat from Elgoi or by a challenging seven-mile walk. One of Scotland’s most atmospheric swims, Skye is also home to the famous Faerie Pools “incredibly cold, clear and magical”. Beware the midges, though.
Stay at Ashaig Campsite, Skye
Waterfall Woods, Brecon Beacons, Wales
The ‘Waterfall Woods’ abound with natural pools and the sound of falling water. Sawd Gwlayds, or Lady Falls, occupies a giant amphitheatre rimmed with a lip of dark black gritstone. Moss and fern grow in profusion in this misty microclimate and many say this is the most beautiful waterfall in Wales. Grid Ref: SN 896093. http://www.brecon-beacons.com/waterfall-country.htm
Stay at Pencelli Castle