Best ocean pools on the New South Wales South Coast

Aslings Beach Pool, Eden
Aslings Beach Pool, Eden

Never have I ever seen so many ocean pools in the one Aussie roadtrip, from Wollongong area to Eden. I don’t mean natural rock pools, but man-made swimming pools that meet the sea!

I had swim lessons at Snapper Rocks “baths”, next to Queensland’s most southerly Froggie Beach. You can only see remnants of it now. But in Queensland, these ocean pools are less common.

Can you believe, it is estimated there are over 70 of these along the NSW coast? As we travelled along the southeastern coast of Australia, we were keen to check them out. North to south, don’t expect any lifeguards – but all of these pools were free:

1 Blowhole Point Rock Pool, Kiama

We almost missed this hidden pool, as we left the blowhole. Make sure you check out the blow hole and lighthouse whilst you are here. Also swim in the Continental Ocean Pool at Black Beach, only metres away!

2 Shellharbour Ocean Pool

It was very tempting to have a dip, but by the time we returned from a walk down the street and drink on the hotel deck, it had come over chilly! They have a covered baby’s pool here, too.We camped just next door at the NRMA Shellharbour Beachside Holiday Park.

3 Ourie Ocean Pool, Werri Beach, Gerringong

Our first dip south of Sydney – we loved Gerringong. You walk out over a natural rock platform – definitely leave your gear on the beach. It wasn’t slippery after all – and I was very careful having bunged my knee the day before.

Do take care on the steps, they are green with growth! Heatley says to watch out diving, his knee still has a graze. Better than his head!

4 Ladies Pools, Gerringong

Just around the headland, are another set of pools. These looked in better condition, and were more popular. Instead of rock walking – follow a paved oceanside path.

Find Cooke Park in the Camps Australia Wide App to take you straight there. Best to leave the van elsewhere, it was a busy car park. Also a lovely spot for a picnic.

5 Huskisson Sea Pool, near Jervis Bay

This pool is open November to March and is fully fenced, so check for closures. You are also treated to views of this area’s white, white sands found in the Shoalhaven and Jervis Bay! We camped at nearby Green Patch in Booderee National Park.

6 Ulladulla Ocean Pool

Another fenced pool, it is fifty metres long, with lane markings. So you can lap and enjoy Ulladulla Harbour views. Open most days 6am – 6pm. Check the website when it is cleaned.

7 Bermagui Blue Pool

You can see why this is one of the BEST known rock pools on the NSW coastline. With dramatic cliffs behind, two large pools (one was for littlies) it really is beautiful! Also a drawcard are the seals easily seen from the shore.

You walk down quite a few steps to reach the pool (worth it, even though my progress was slow). Once you are there, access into the pools are excellent. Parking is limited, however there were spots for motorhomes, and it is a drive through area. Always handy to know for us travellers!

8 Aslings Beach Pool, Eden

Although there was a little climb into this, and a few hundred metres walk down the beach – I think this ocean pool has topped my list.

For one, it was hot enough to swim when we visited. Two, waves were crashing in! Three, the magnificent pink cliffs and little nooks you could swim into. Four, Heatley also appreciated the cold showers at the amenity block, near where we parked. Highly recommend Aslings Beach Pool, exploring Eden and the Killer Whale Trail.


Although Sydney is the known mecca for ocean pools, Wollongong has one after another! You know, I studied here for a year. Took the bus to get groceries, if only I’d realised back then.

The next time I’m travelling the South Coast, I’ll be packing the togs for these, and stopping longer in the Illawarra region’s ocean pools!

Here’s 10 more for your list, north to south:

  • Coalcliff Beach Ocean Pool, Stanwell Park
  • Wombarra Rock Pool
  • Coledale Rock Pool
  • Austinmer Rock Pools
  • Bulli Rock Pool
  • Woonoona Rock Pool
  • Bellambi Rock Pool
  • Towradji Rock Pool – You know we had a picnic lunch right here, and I didn’t see it! Heatley thought I had, so didn’t mention it until later! So no photos…
  • Gentleman’s Pool, North Wollongong
  • Nun’s Baths, Wollongong (also known as Chain Baths, and are only partially man made/ half natural)

Best of all, find camps and caravan parks nearby all of these locations in the Camps Australia Wide App and guides!

Download the Camps App for iPhone/iPad or Android




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