Open water swimming is a thrilling and challenging sport, attracting both open-water enthusiasts and competitive swimmers alike. Whether you're a former competitive swimmer or a casual ocean swimmer, having the right pair of swim goggles is essential for a successful and enjoyable experience in the open water. Goggles with the right features can greatly enhance your comfort, visibility, and overall performance during open water swims. In this blog post, we will explore the key factors you should consider when shopping around for the best ocean swim goggles and discuss some of the ocean goggles available.
Best Ocean Swim Goggles
One of the first things to look for when shopping for ocean swim goggles is a comfortable fit. Goggles with soft silicone seals and adjustable straps are often the most comfortable options. These features ensure a secure fit around the eye sockets, preventing water from entering and causing discomfort during your swim. A comfortable fit is crucial for long-distance open water swims, as it minimises the risk of chafing and irritation.
Good peripheral vision is essential for open water swimmers. Unlike indoor swimming pools, open water conditions can vary greatly, and you need to be aware of your surroundings to stay safe. Look for goggles with a wide field of vision that allows you to see what's happening around you. Goggles with a low-profile design are ideal for reducing drag in the water while still providing excellent visibility.
When swimming outdoors on sunny days, it's crucial to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays. The best swimming goggles come with UV protection, shielding your eyes from the sun's harmful UVA and UVB rays. This feature is especially important for open water swimmers who spend extended periods in the sun.
Clear vision is vital for any swim session, and anti-fog protection is a must for ocean swim goggles. Foggy lenses can severely impair your visibility, which can be dangerous in open water. Look for goggles with anti-fog coatings to ensure that your vision remains clear throughout your swim, regardless of the weather conditions.
Adjustable Nose Bridge
Nose comfort and fit are essential factors in choosing the right pair of swim goggles. Some goggles offer adjustable nose bridges, allowing you to customize the fit to your face shape. Others provide interchangeable nose bridges, which are useful if you have specific preferences or share your goggles with other swimmers. A well-fitted nosepiece ensures that the goggles sit comfortably on your face without putting pressure on your nose.
Different people have different face shapes, and what fits one swimmer perfectly might not work for another. Finding the right fit is crucial for a secure and comfortable experience during your open water swims.
Goggles come with various lens options to suit different light conditions. For sunny days, polarized lenses can reduce glare and improve your vision in bright sunlight. Clear lenses are suitable for indoor swimming or low-light conditions. Some swimmers may require prescription goggles if they wear corrective lenses or contact lenses, making it easier to see clearly underwater.
Secure straps are essential for keeping your goggles in place during a swim. Look for adjustable straps that can be easily tightened or loosened to achieve a snug and secure fit. Goggle straps should be durable and resistant to wear and tear, ensuring that they don't break during your swim.
Consider the type of open water swimming you'll be doing when selecting your goggles. If you'll be swimming in bright light and clear conditions, polarized lenses can be a great choice. For overcast or low-light conditions, clear or lightly tinted lenses may be more suitable. Goggle with a wide field of vision can be ideal for sea swimming. Try a few pairs out and see which style and type you prefer.
Though not the most critical factor, some swimmers appreciate the aesthetics of their goggles. Goggles come in lots of different colours and designs, allowing you to choose a pair that matches your style and preferences.
Sea Swimming Goggles
Let’s look at some of our goggles here at Halocline which could be just the ticket for your wild swimming adventures.
Vision Plus Swimming Goggles
Our Vision Plus Swimming Goggles offer a wide field of vision which is ideal for sea swimming or water sports. Due to the design of the frame, your field of vision will be much wider than traditional swimming goggles. The frame on these goggles is lightweight but still strong and flexible to allow the mask to seal to your face in a watertight fashion. The seal is made from high-grade silicone which will feel comfortable and secure. These goggles are latex and PVC-free.
The polycarbonate lens on these goggles offers a superb clear view and you’ll love the fact that they are scratch-resistant. The lenses have a coating to reduce UV glare, which makes them perfect for outdoor swims. They have also been treated with anti-fogging treatment to keep your view clear throughout your time in the water.
Comfort Plus Swimming Goggles
These superb Comfort Plus Swimming Goggles have been designed with comfort and vision as their primary goals. You’ll find keeping the water out of your eyes, whilst enjoying an extended field of vision is a breeze with these cleverly designed pool and sea goggles.
The eye gaskets are made from super-soft silicone and when combined with the flexible frame, these goggles should give you a comfortable fit when wearing them.
These goggles come in two lens colours, a clear and a blue-tinted lens. The blue-tinted is ideal for extra contrast in bright light, so perfect for outdoor swimming in bright sunshine, as it reduces the glare and UV. This will improve the contrast, resulting in a clearer vision for you. Both lenses offer anti-fog technology for superb vision during your swim.
When shopping for ocean swim goggles, consider the specific conditions of your local swimming spots. If you primarily swim in an indoor pool, your requirements may differ from someone who frequently engages in open water swims. Be sure to choose goggles that align with your most common swimming environment.
Finding the best pair of ocean swim goggles involves considering a combination of factors, including comfort, UV protection, peripheral vision, lens options, and the specific needs of your swimming activities. The right goggles for you will depend on your individual preferences and needs. Remember that a good fit is the most important factor, and taking the time to find the right pair of goggles can significantly enhance your open water swimming experience, whether you're a seasoned open-water swimmer or a beginner taking on your first ocean swim. So let us use our expertise and help you find the perfect pair of goggles for your next open water adventure!
Best Ocean Swims
Ocean swimming offers a unique and invigorating experience for water enthusiasts. These destinations offer a variety of experiences, from tranquil tropical beaches to thrilling coastal adventures.
Bondi Beach, Australia
Located in Sydney, Bondi Beach is a world-famous destination for ocean swimming. The beach boasts a kilometre-long crescent of golden sand and turquoise waters. Bondi is renowned for its consistent waves, making it ideal for both surfers and ocean swimmers. The Bondi to Bronte ocean swim is a popular event, where swimmers can enjoy the picturesque coastal scenery. Bondi Beach offers the perfect blend of culture, breathtaking vistas, and a vibrant ocean swimming community.
Maui, Hawaii, USA
Maui, part of the Hawaiian archipelago, is a paradise for ocean swimmers. The island's diverse coastline features sheltered bays, volcanic craters, and pristine reefs. Swim along the breathtaking Hana Highway coast, or explore the vibrant marine life in Molokini Crater. Maui's clear waters, warm temperatures, and stunning marine life provide a truly magical ocean swimming experience.
For those seeking a different kind of ocean swimming experience, Luskentyre in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland offers a unique opportunity. The crystal-clear waters, white sandy beaches, and dramatic, rugged landscapes provide a stunning backdrop for open water swimming. While the water temperature may be chilly, the scenery and sense of adventure are worth the dip.
The Maldives, an Indian Ocean paradise, is known for its luxury resorts and pristine beaches. The shallow, clear waters of the Maldives are perfect for those looking to explore coral reefs and vibrant marine life while enjoying a swim. The country is made up of around 1,200 islands, each with its unique charm and underwater wonders. The Maldives is a haven for snorkelers and divers as well, making it a complete aquatic experience.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The iconic Copacabana and Ipanema beaches in Rio de Janeiro are world-renowned for their vibrant atmosphere and beautiful ocean swimming conditions. The warm waters of the Atlantic Ocean are inviting, and the stunning backdrop of Sugarloaf Mountain and Christ the Redeemer provides a unique coastal ambience. Swimmers can enjoy the lively beach culture and even participate in open water races held in these iconic waters.
Cape Town, South Africa
Cape Town is a city with a diverse range of ocean swimming experiences. One of the most famous spots is Clifton Beach, offering sheltered coves and fine sands. However, if you're seeking adventure, swim in the chilly waters around Cape Point, where the Indian and Atlantic Oceans meet. The rugged coastline and vibrant marine life, including great white sharks, create an exciting backdrop for daring ocean swimmers.
Lake Tahoe, USA
Lake Tahoe, straddling the border of California and Nevada, offers a freshwater alternative to ocean swimming. Known for its stunning clarity and deep blue waters, Lake Tahoe is a mountain paradise. The lake offers a unique experience where you can swim surrounded by the towering Sierra Nevada mountains, and during the summer, the water is cool and refreshing.
The spice-scented island of Zanzibar in the Indian Ocean is a hidden gem for ocean swimmers. With its white sand beaches and clear waters, Zanzibar provides a tranquil and exotic swimming experience. Nungwi Beach and Kendwa Beach are some of the most popular spots for ocean swimming. The coral reefs and abundant marine life also make it a fantastic destination for snorkelling.
The Great Barrier Reef, Australia
The Great Barrier Reef is not only one of the world's most famous dive spots but also a fantastic destination for ocean swimmers. The reef's shallow waters offer a unique opportunity to swim alongside colourful coral formations and an incredible variety of marine species. Whether you're swimming near Cairns, the Whitsunday Islands, or other parts of the reef, you'll be immersed in one of the world's natural wonders.
Bora Bora, French Polynesia
Bora Bora, often referred to as the "Pearl of the Pacific," is a dream destination for ocean enthusiasts. The warm, turquoise waters of the lagoon surrounding the island are perfect for leisurely swims. The overwater bungalows provide a luxurious backdrop, and you can explore the abundant marine life, including rays and sharks, during your swims.
Lake Geneva, Switzerland
Nestled in the heart of Europe, Lake Geneva offers a unique setting for open water swimming. The lake is surrounded by picturesque towns and the stunning Swiss and French Alps. The water quality is excellent, and the lake hosts various swimming events, including the famous "La Traversée du Lac Léman." Lake Geneva combines natural beauty and a sense of history, making it an excellent destination for open water swimming.
Malibu, California, USA
Malibu, along the coast of Southern California, offers a quintessential beach experience. Its long stretches of sandy beaches and consistent waves make it a favourite destination for swimmers, surfers, and beach lovers alike. The scenic beauty of the coastline and its celebrity appeal make Malibu an iconic ocean swimming spot.
Magnetic Island, Australia
Magnetic Island, located off the coast of Queensland, offers a unique combination of rugged landscapes and tranquil bays. The island's diverse geography provides excellent swimming conditions, from secluded rocky coves to pristine sandy beaches. With an array of marine life and underwater attractions, Magnetic Island is a fantastic destination for ocean swimming and snorkelling.
Costa Brava, Spain
The Costa Brava, on the northeast coast of Spain, offers a combination of stunning Mediterranean scenery and beautiful beaches. The clear waters are perfect for open water swimming, and the coastal cliffs, coves, and charming fishing villages provide a captivating backdrop. This region is known for its rich history, making it a great destination for culture and swimming enthusiasts alike.
The Greek Islands
The Greek Islands are renowned for their unique charm and crystal-clear waters. Islands such as Crete, Santorini, and Mykonos offer an abundance of swimming opportunities, from exploring volcanic calderas to swimming in azure seas with breathtaking sunsets. The Mediterranean climate and rich history of these islands make them an enchanting place for open water swimmers.
Baja California, Mexico
The Sea of Cortez in Baja California, Mexico, is a hidden gem for ocean swimming. The tranquil, warm waters are home to an array of marine life, including dolphins and sea lions. Swimmers can explore pristine beaches, secluded coves, and vibrant coral reefs. The combination of marine diversity and coastal beauty makes this region a must.
Best Outdoor Swims in the UK
If jetting off abroad for a swimming adventure isn’t on the cards, many beautiful places in the UK are ideal for a wild swimming adventure. Here are some of our favourite outdoor swimming spots where you can try out your sea swimming goggles.
Wild outdoor swimming in the UK is a cherished pastime, offering an opportunity to connect with nature while taking a refreshing plunge into unspoiled waters. From serene lakes nestled in picturesque valleys to rugged coastal coves lapped by the sea, the British Isles are a haven for those seeking to escape the hustle and bustle of modern life. In this guide, we will embark on a journey to discover the best places for wild outdoor swimming in the UK, each with its unique charm and natural beauty.
The Lake District in northwest England is a true outdoor swimmer's paradise. With its numerous lakes, tarns, and rivers, this region offers a wide range of wild swimming opportunities. Some popular spots include Windermere, Ullswater, and Buttermere, where swimmers can enjoy crystal-clear waters amid the stunning backdrop of the Cumbrian mountains.
Dartmoor National Park
Dartmoor National Park in Devon is a vast wilderness of rugged terrain, granite tors, and moorland. Its rivers and streams provide some fantastic wild swimming experiences. Locations like Sharrah Pool and Venford Reservoir offer opportunities for a refreshing dip amid Dartmoor's natural beauty.
Snowdonia, known for its majestic mountains and lush valleys, is also home to some remarkable wild swimming spots. Llyn Gwynant, a serene lake at the foot of Snowdon, and the natural pool at Fairy Glen in Betws-y-Coed are just a couple of the picturesque locations where you can enjoy wild swimming in the heart of Wales.
Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye
On the Isle of Skye, the Fairy Pools are a series of crystal-clear, icy-blue pools fed by the water of the Cuillin mountains. Surrounded by dramatic scenery, these pools are perfect for those seeking an exhilarating and magical wild swimming experience.
The Gower Peninsula, Wales
The Gower Peninsula is known for its stunning coastal beauty and hidden coves. Rhossili Bay and Three Cliffs Bay are popular spots for wild swimming, with their golden sands and clear waters. The Gower is a fantastic place to explore the rugged Welsh coastline.
Easedale Tarn is a picturesque mountain lake located in the Lake District. It's surrounded by rolling hills and lush meadows, making it a perfect spot for a tranquil swim in a serene, alpine-like setting.
Durdle Door, part of the Jurassic Coast in Dorset, is not only a stunning natural arch but also a great location for coastal wild swimming. The crystal-clear waters and dramatic rock formations make it a memorable place for a dip.
Loch Lomond, the largest inland stretch of water in the UK, offers numerous swimming opportunities. Whether you're seeking a quiet bay or a more adventurous swim, this loch has it all. Conic Hill, overlooking Loch Lomond, is a popular starting point for swimmers.
St. Nectan's Glen
St. Nectan's Glen in Cornwall is a magical place where a river flows through a narrow, wooded valley. The glen is known for its mystical atmosphere and waterfalls, making it a unique setting for wild swimming.
The rugged landscape of Hadrian's Wall, an ancient Roman fortification, is not only historically significant but also offers various opportunities for wild swimming in its rivers and streams. Exploring the waterways along this iconic wall is a chance to combine history with the pleasure of open water swimming.
The Fairy Glen
The Fairy Glen in Conwy, Wales, is a hidden gem for wild swimming. This enchanting location offers a natural pool with clear water surrounded by lush greenery. The serene atmosphere and gentle currents make it a peaceful spot for a refreshing dip.
Devil's Bridge in Ceredigion, Wales, is not only known for its ancient bridge but also for its stunning waterfalls and natural pools. The water is cool and clear, and the surrounding gorge provides a picturesque setting for a wild swim.
The Shropshire Hills
The Shropshire Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is home to various rivers and pools that are ideal for wild swimming. Locations like Carding Mill Valley and the Long Mynd offer pristine waters amid the rolling hills.
St. Mary's Loch
St. Mary's Loch is the largest natural loch in the Scottish Borders. It offers a peaceful and remote location for wild swimming, with its serene waters and rolling hills providing a quiet escape from the outside world.
The River Dart in Devon is a fantastic location for wild swimming, with numerous pools and cascades providing opportunities for a refreshing dip. Popular spots include Sharrah Pool and Spitchwick.
Bude Sea Pool
Bude Sea Pool in Cornwall is a partially man-made tidal swimming pool that offers a safe and unique outdoor swimming experience. This pool cut into the rocks, is filled with seawater during high tide and is a fantastic place to take a dip.
Eel Pie Island, England
Eel Pie Island in London is a quirky and artistic community located on the Thames River. This unique spot is perfect for urban wild swimming, offering a blend of nature and creativity in the heart of the city.
Coe Burn is a river in the Mourne Mountains of Northern Ireland. It's a remote location with crystal-clear waters, and swimming in its cool pools is a refreshing experience amid the dramatic landscape.
The River Avon
The River Avon in Wiltshire, often associated with the city of Bath, offers a charming location for wild swimming. The river winds through scenic countryside and provides peaceful spots for a refreshing dip.
The Isle of Harris
The Isle of Harris in the Outer Hebrides is renowned for its breathtaking landscapes and beautiful beaches. The turquoise waters of Luskentyre and Scarista beaches, combined with the stunning white sands, create a magical backdrop for wild swimming in the North Atlantic.
The Blue Lagoon
The Blue Lagoon in Bletchley, Milton Keynes, is a former limestone quarry filled with crystal-clear blue waters. While it's not a natural water body, it offers a unique experience with its vibrant colours and underwater attractions, making it a popular spot for open water swimming.
Linn of Dee
The Linn of Dee is a waterfall and natural pool located in the Cairngorms National Park. The pool's deep, clear waters offer a refreshing swim surrounded by the stunning landscapes of the Scottish Highlands.
The Isle of Mull
The Isle of Mull is part of the Inner Hebrides and offers various opportunities for wild swimming. The clear waters of Calgary Bay and the peaceful Lochbuie provide excellent spots for open water swimmers to explore the natural beauty of this island.
The River Derwent
The River Derwent in the Peak District provides numerous swimming opportunities. Its meandering course through the heart of the national park and the surrounding countryside creates a serene setting for wild swimming.
Skomer Island, located off the coast of Pembrokeshire, offers the unique experience of swimming with seals. The island is home to a large seal colony, and a dip in the surrounding waters provides the chance to encounter these playful creatures in their natural habitat.Which of these great locations have you been to and had a dip in? Where else would you recommend?