The swimming pool that rocked my world

How have I not been swimming here every day since we arrived? 

This pool in downtown Cairns is amazing. This photo really doesn’t capture its size or location or special features. First of all, it is huge – 4800 sq meters (almost 52,000 sq ft or 1.2 acres) and it is slightly saltwater with white sand “beaches” at the edge that come right out into the water. It is located on the Esplanade (3 miles or so of waterfront in the downtown area) so it has magnificent views of the sea.

My favorite thing about this pool? No crocodiles and no box jellyfish (see George’s post on stingers.) I know it’s so much more hip and cool to swim in the ocean, but the salt water is very salty and I’m constantly worried about bumping into something larger and scarier than myself. The beach right down the street from here not only has stinger warnings, it also says, “crocodiles are known to inhabit these waters”. The biggest thing I have to worry about is bumping into in this pool is another person who will laugh and we will both excuse ourselves and carry on. No problem. No hospital visit or missing limb. And have I mentioned the temperature? I think it was custom made for my comfort zone. I have always said that I like 80° water, but I’m revising that down to about 78°. The water temperature in this area at this time of year is about 83° which is actually warm enough to not feel refreshing.

Today we decided to run along the Esplanade and then get in the pool to cool off. On a whim, I decided to try to keep up with George on our run today. I managed to stay at his pace for 2.5 miles and then dropped back to my own comfort zone. I ran 6k, which means he ran closer to 6.5k or maybe even more. We are slowly getting stronger and I am beginning to see a 10k in our futures. Although George consistently runs farther and faster than I do, we are both seeing the results. George now weighs less than I did when we left Sonoma County! (Take that in for a moment.) He’s lost nearly 25 pounds and I’ve lost about 12. I’m actually beginning to worry that he will come back weighing less than I do.

In any case, I hope to spend some portion of each of our 5 remaining days in Cairns enjoying the urban plunge into waters not too salty, not too chlorine-y, not too warm, not too cold, not too dangerous – but juuuuusssst right!

9 thoughts on “The swimming pool that rocked my world

    • Hi Bev,

      Thanks for the nomination. I think it should be right up there – shortlisted at least. Did I mention that it’s free? Today we went snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef. What an amazing experience!

      See you soon, Lois

  1. That pool is incredible!! Looks just like the ocean (without the creatures). What an amazing way to spend part of your day!!


  2. Incredible! That was not there when I visited back in (I think) 93 or 94. We will definitely be planning a trip (back) to Cairns. Whoa…I just had a “that was 20 years ago” thoughts…yikes!

    • Well, Nich, you’re only about 25, right? You must have been there when you were a little tyke. The whole Cairns downtown area is fantastic. They have a boardwalk that extends several miles right on the coast, there are running trails and bike lines along there, too. They have fitness classes out on the lawn 5 nights a week, and there are workout stations including a couple stationery bikes looking out over the bay. There are soccer fields and tennis courts and an enclosed kiddie play area that includes water features. The enormous pool has a sand beach and several lifeguards. And ALL of it is free. Even the Zumba and yoga classes. The most fabulous thing of all is that people take advantage of it. We ran there several times and the place was always hopping. AND there are bars and shopping and restaurants nearby. It is one of the best town areas I’ve run across. Obviously, we loved it!

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