Packing your swimsuit on vacation is a norm nowadays, but most of the time, travelers only think of the swimming pools in resorts, or perhaps at most a bikini for lying by the beach. However, in our big beautiful world, there is so much more than just concrete pools and beaches! After all, what are natural pools for if not swimming? You can choose to go for a dip in one of these natural wonders when you’re traveling, no matter which part of the world you’re in. This is especially so in the Central and South American areas, where instead of man-made pools, pristine all-natural waters are surprisingly easy to find! Not sure where to find them? That’s no surprise, given how secluded these places are — adding on to their exclusivity and charm. But perhaps that’s not going to be the case for long, as we reveal the top natural places to swim in this exciting region of the world.
If you are looking for somewhere to kayak, swim, fish, and snorkel, Bahia Concepcion is the place to go. With amazing beaches and astounding aquatic life, this is a true paradise for all sorts of travelers. Totally kid-friendly, this very safe and super charming destination boasts beaches dotted with swaying palm trees and perfect white sands. It’s no surprise that people always try to catch a picture with the startlingly blue waters, with the backdrop of plenty of forests, caves, beaches, and mountains. The views are indeed incredible and marveling at them feels almost inevitable in any case. There are also many activities and water sports, including paddleboarding, kayaking, and wakeboarding in the warmer months. Many also deem it a good camping place, perfect for you if you know you won’t be able to leave the ocean or the beach.
Ever heard of a boiling waterfall? Well, Mexico is home to Hierve El Agua, which translates literally to “boiling the water”. Of course, you don’t have to be afraid of getting scorched as it’s not actually a boiling waterfall. In fact, this unique waterfall is a mixture of water and rich minerals that give the mineral pools at the edge a little yellow hue. As a result of all the excess minerals, there are also many amazing caves in this particular area. Cooling off in these pools is a very popular activity, so be prepared to change into a swimsuit! Bringing one along should be no problem, especially since you can get here easily by hiring a driver, taking a bus or joining a tour.
This country may be known for the Galapagos Island, but what’s as beautiful is the Isla de la Plata, sometimes seen as a more affordable version of Galapagos itself. Simply take a chartered boat ride from the city of Puerto Lopez located just 40 minutes away, and you can fully experience and explore the island. Hiking through the island is definite to experience all the incredible wildlife and sights, but swimming here takes it to another level. Get up close and personal to a Pacific green sea turtle, blue-footed boobies or even a spotted dolphin! If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of a whale. In any case, any of your marine adventures here will always be a unique story to tell.
If you’re a lover of anything with rustic charm, Mompiche is the place to be. This tiny, laidback fishing village is the top spot for rest and relaxation. Recently gaining traction with visitors from all over the globe, this destination offers so much more than the typical resort experience. For starters, the beach here is long and pristine, and the sand seems to disappear when the high tide comes in. However, when it is low tide, the waves retreat, leaving a large expanse of beautiful sand to enjoy. If you do go, remember to check tidal reports and of course, take advantage of the year-round warm weather and take a dip in the ocean when it’s safe. Surfing is also possible here, with world-class surf spots that cater to both novice and experienced surfers.
Chile is known for many of the world’s most remarkable beaches, such as the Concon Beach with its gorgeous sand dunes. There’s also La Serena Beach where one can do activities like swimming or even windsurfing. Lesser known is Laja Falls but is by no means any less of a prime destination for any traveler. With 4 horseshoe waterfalls stretching more than 450 meters, these waterfalls and the rainbow that never disappears in their midst will sweep you off your feet. Truly a sight to behold, you can also swim in the natural pools created under Saltos del Laja. For a front-row seat to the beautiful rainbows, there are also natural pools near the boulders that give you a purely unobstructed view.
Apart from all that, there’s also gem hidden up in the northern part of Chile — hidden way up on the world’s highest geyser field. At 14,000 feet above sea level, the El Tatio Geysers are paradise, especially for those who have spent their day hiking up to the peak. In fact, many people opt to go on a sunrise tour to the area, where you can get a magical view of the sun rising, coupled with the steam rising from the geysers, forced out through the contrast between temperatures and the hot water — almost like a chlorine-free natural jacuzzi. With a stunning view to match, this group of warm and naturally heated springs will soothe any aching feet and be a source of much-needed comfort, especially in the colder months.
There’s no shortage of natural pools to visit and experience in Central and South America, and the best part is that most of these experiences come coupled with sceneries that just take your breath away. The next time you pack a swimsuit, do look out for these places, or explore these kinds of natural pools on your own! Who knows, maybe you’ll discover something completely new. Even if you don’t, you’ll have experienced the comfort and warmth Mother Nature has to offer, and that is more than what most people can say.