Here’s Where You Can Swim for Free in Kentucky This Summer
I was going to lead with "the countdown has begun." But I think the countdown to Memorial Day Weekend and the opening of public swimming facilities began WEEKS ago. It certainly did for me; I love to swim.
And you know what? While public pools are great sources of summertime entertainment--I have awesome memories of Chautauqua Pool (now known as Combest Pool)--my favorite way to swim is in a lake. Love it. Can't get enough of it.
Free Swimming in Kentucky
I will happily pay whatever fee might be required to swim in a public lake, but in Kentucky--and probably all the states, I guess--we can swim free of charge at a variety of swimming lakes. So load up the baloney sandwiches, cheese crackers, and canned sodas and let's go.
I have raved about Kentucky's state parks in this space a number of times. I love the outdoors, and they offer wonderful "vegging out" opportunities from the Mississippi River to the Appalachian Mountains and everywhere in between.
This summer, maybe I'll see you at one of the 10 state park beaches that offer free swimming to the public.
And don't forget the Big Twig photo ops.
Green River Lake
Barren River Lake
This is one of my favorites. I've stayed here on multiple occasions, but, again--and that's why it's on this list--it wouldn't have been necessary if I had just wanted to swim. But I love this place. And it gets bonus points for nostalgia; my friends and I used to come here when I was in college in Bowling Green.
Buckhorn is the first of two on this list that are nestled in the extraordinary Appalachian Mountains. Imagine enjoying a swim and looking up at all that beauty. Hey, who has to IMAGINE?
Rough River Dam
Kentucky Dam Village
There's so much to do around Kentucky Dam Village that your swimming trip will likely need to be expanded to take in all the other attractions in southwestern Kentucky.
Carr Creek Lake
By the way, Carr Creek Lake is the other swim lake surrounded by the majesty of the eastern Kentucky Appalachians. As a matter of fact, you'll notice that it's very close to the Virginia state line. Nothin' wrong with a summer road trip.
Of course, many of Kentucky's state parks are also resorts and have pools only available to guests. And there ARE lakes that charge a fee to swim. But I've just alleviated that concern.
Have a great summer.