9 gorgeous, chemical-free swimming pools to dive into this summer.

Did you know that some of the oldest and most popular swimming pools in the country actually don't use chemicals to keep the water clean?

Photo via iStock.


Natural pools don't use any chlorine, which can dry out your skin, cause allergic reactions, and be really dangerous to handle. Instead, many of them are built to harness water from nearby springs, rivers, and lakes that Mother Nature has already filtered.

They really are the best of both worlds: It's the same beautiful, chemical-free water you get while swimming in nature only with lifeguards, diving boards, and no yucky, muddy toes to worry about!

Here are nine fantastic natural swimming spots that are well worth a visit this summer.

1. Deep Eddy Pool, Austin, Texas

Deep Eddy is one of the oldest swimming pools in Texas (100 years old!) and is an official historic landmark. It brings in fresh water via a spring fed by the nearby Colorado River and — I mean, just look at it!

Image via mkettler/Wikimedia Commons.

2. Landa Park Aquatic Complex, New Braunfels, Texas

Yep, that's a water slide. Yep, that's a rope swing. Yep, that's fresh spring water.

Ready to dive in?

Photo by Sergio Chapa, used with permission.

3. Barton Springs Pool, Austin, Texas

The beautiful and extremely popular Barton Springs Pool is fed by Main Barton Spring, one of the largest in Texas, and features an incredible view of downtown Austin. You might even swim alongside an endangered Barton Springs Salamander as they make their home in the pool.

Image via Downtown Austin/Wikimedia Commons.

4. Balmorhea State Park, Toyahvale, Texas

Balmorhea State Park boasts their pool as "the world's largest spring-fed swimming pool." It's so big, in fact, you can snorkel and scuba dive in it. It's also in the middle of a desert!

Photo courtesy of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department © 2006.

5. Venetian Pool, Coral Gables, Florida

The Venetian Pool opened in 1924, featuring water fed through an underground aquifer for some of the clearest, cleaning swimming you've ever seen. The stunning pool has waterfalls, grottos, and a bridge as well.

Photo by Matt Kiefer/Flickr.

6. Sycamore Pool, Chico, California

In Chico, the parks department has done something really cool: They've actually diverted water from Big Chico Creek so it flows through a manmade pool that can be properly maintained. The pool is a moving body of water!

Image via Saopaulo1/Wikimedia Commons.

7. Webber Natural Swimming Pool, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Truly one of a kind, in America at least, Webber pool is a living, breathing ecosystem. Unlike the others on this list, the water never leaves the facility here; rather it's filtered every couple of hours by plants, rocks, and bacteria. It's an incredible sight to behold.

Photo courtesy of the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board.

8. Hancock Springs Pool, Lampasas, Texas

Another pool that opened in the early 1900s, Hancock Springs is a big tourist draw, with its sparkling blue spring water and serene tree cover. When it first opened, people came to the pool to get baptized, but these days it's all about their dive-in movie nights.

Photo by Lampasas, Texas, Parks Department, used with permission.

9. The Ranch at Furnace Creek, Death Valley, California

Furnace Creek actually features two spring-fed pools along with an impressive conservation system for ensuring the water doesn't go to waste. Yeah, not a bad place to go for a dip in sweltering hot Death Valley.

Photo by The Ranch at Furnace Creek, used with permission.

Don't worry, spring-fed and natural pools aren't just beautiful; they're also totally safe.

There may not be a ton of chemicals in them to kill bacteria, but the water is usually brought in fresh from a nearby cold spring. In many places, the pool is drained and refilled regularly, with the wastewater being used to water gardens or fill ponds and eventually returning to the natural watershed.

So whadya say? Can you think of anything more refreshing than a dip in some of the finest water Earth has to offer?

Photo by Louis Hansel on Unsplash
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This story was originally shared on Capital One.

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While driven to launch her own baking business, pursuing a dream in the culinary arts was economically challenging for Klohr. In the United States, culinary schools can open doors to future careers, but the cost of entry can be upwards of $36,000 a year.

Through a friend, Klohr learned about La Cocina VA, a nonprofit dedicated to providing job training and entrepreneurship development services at a training facility in the Washington, D.C-area.

La Cocina VA's, which translates to "the kitchen" in Spanish, offers its Bilingual Culinary Training program to prepare low-and moderate-income individuals from diverse backgrounds to launch careers in the food industry.

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Wil Wheaton speaking to an audience at 2019 Wondercon.

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As someone with his feet in both worlds, actor Wil Wheaton weighed in on that question and offered a refreshingly reasonable perspective.

A reader who goes by @avinlander asked Wheaton on Tumblr:

"Question: I have more of an opinion question for you. When fans of things hear about misconduct happening on sets/behind-the-scenes are they allowed to still enjoy the thing? Or should it be boycotted completely? Example: I've been a major fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer since I was a teenager and it was currently airing. I really nerded out on it and when I lost my Dad at age 16 'The Body' episode had me in such cathartic tears. Now we know about Joss Whedon. I haven't rewatched a single episode since his behavior came to light. As a fan, do I respectfully have to just box that away? Is it disrespectful of the actors that went through it to knowingly keep watching?"

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Chewy, the pet retailer who has dedicated themselves to supporting shelters and rescues throughout the country, recognized the important work of a couple in Tampa, FL who have been taking professional photos of shelter pets to help get them adopted.

"If it's a photo of a scared animal, most people, subconsciously or even consciously, are going to skip over it," pet photographer Adam Goldberg says. "They can't visualize that dog in their home."

Adam realized the importance of quality shelter photos while working as a social media specialist for the Humane Society of Broward County in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"The photos were taken top-down so you couldn't see the size of the pet, and the flash would create these red eyes," he recalls. "Sometimes [volunteers] would shoot the photos through the chain-link fences."

That's why Adam and his wife, Mary, have spent much of their free time over the past five years photographing over 1,200 shelter animals to show off their unique personalities to potential adoptive families. The Goldbergs' wonderful work was recently profiled by Chewy in the video above entitled, "A Day in the Life of a Shelter Pet Photographer."