#CLTNIGHTLIFE Blog 383 Posts

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Aug 05, 2019

Charlotte’s (Unofficial) Guide to Summer Pool Time

Posted by Laura Gregory • Where To Go

We’ve now officially entered into the hottest part of the year (except for that one day in October when it will, suddenly, without warning, and for no apparent reason, be 90 degrees). If you’re looking for a reason to step outside your air-conditioned apartment but the thought of it fills you with dread and sweat, we have the perfect solution for you: find a pool. Fast. And take up residence there. While Charlotte may not be known as a city with epic pool parties (a la Vegas, Miami, etc.), there are still some options for taking a cool dip, getting your toes wet, diving in, etc. Read on to find our recommendations of cool pools (and other bodies of water) in the Charlotte area.

  1. Omni Hotel’s Coin Bar:

You’ve probably heard of this urban oasis that’s famous because it’s open to the public, and we’re echoing its praises. It’s open seasonally from 5-10 PM Monday- Saturday, and 12-10 PM Sunday. Simply check in at the lobby of the Omni and ask for a key card to access the pool. There are couches and cabanas for rent, food and drinks, and $2 Taco Tuesdays. If you’re looking to start your weekend early, check out their craft beer offerings for $5 on Fridays. What more could you ask for?! 

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c/o Coin Bar

  1. U.S. National Whitewater Center:

Ok—hear us out: we know that the Whitewater Center is not a pool per se, but there are still plenty of aquatic activities you can indulge in here. We recommend flatwater kayaking for those looking for a fun, yet beginner-friendly, active experience on the Catawba River (no rapids involved). Day passes start at $59, or you can buy a single activity pass if you know what you want to try (ex: flatwater kayak passes are $30). After you’ve explored and climbed, swam, paddled, etc., check out Pump House Biergaten for a drink. A Saturday activity we’d highly recommend. 

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  1. YMCA Outdoor Pools:

It’s fun to swim at the… Y M C A! While this option may be for those who are seriously committed to a full season of pool time, it’s certainly an option: there are several Charlotte-area YMCA locations that have outdoor pools (because no one likes the chlorine overload of an indoor pool): the Brace, Harris, Morrison, and Simmons branches all have outdoor pools, and some of them even have extras like slides, zero entry pools, and splash pads. If you’re north of Charlotte, you can even visit the Lake Norman branch, which has lake access and an outdoor pool! Check your local branch’s offering, or venture out and explore a new branch (free with your membership!). A PSA: these pools are highly likely to be family friendly, so keep that in mind when packing your cooler.

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The Harris YMCA Branch outdoor pool

  1. Phone a friend who has an apartment pool:

This is the most tried-and-true method of summertime relaxation there is: exploiting your friends, co-workers, and even vague acquaintances who have the luxury of living in an apartment with a pool. Start out by reaching out and saying how much you “miss them” and are dying to “get together for a fun day in the sun;” if they don’t take the hint and offer to host a pool day, then you should: a) be blunt or b) get better friends.