For those who prefer fresh water to pools, Hamburg has plenty of options. There are many natural and man-made lakes within the city's borders. Many have bathrooms, kiosks and other amenities, while others are a bit more rugged. Each of them offers the opportunity for a lovely, cool dip on a warm day.
Please keep in mind that some lakes may have capacity restrictions, so it is best to check ahead, especially on weekends.
Neusurenland 67, 22159 Hamburg, Germany
The Sommerbad (lit. ‘summer pool’) Farmsen is a beautiful lake loved for its long, wide beach and its impressive waterslide. Sprawling meadows invite you to spread out and relax, and the many trees provide shade. Kids can find plenty of opportunities for play, plus restrooms and locker rooms make for a convenient trip. Parking is free of charge.
Admission: €4, kids €2
Getting there: U1 to Farmsen, bus lines 27, 168 and 171 to Neusurenland or Rönkkoppel
Visit Sommerbad Farmsen online for more details concerning opening hours and dates.
Tonndorfer Strand 37, 22045 Hamburg
The lake has a beach and a large meadow with playground equipment for kids. A waterslide and diving boards provide some additional fun in the sun. Restrooms, showers, locker rooms and a kiosk can also be found here. Note that there is no dedicated parking in the area.
Admission: Adults: €3, children under 12: €1.50
Getting there: R80 or R81 train, bus lines 9, 27, 167 to Tonndorf station followed by a 10 min walk
Visit Sommerbad Ostende online for more details concerning opening hours and dates.
The Boberger See lake is part of the Boberger Niederung nature reserve. However, swimming in the lake and spending time on the surrounding meadows is permitted. The beach on the northeastern banks is great for families and restrooms are available. Please note, however, that dogs are not allowed and there is no kiosk for purchasing refreshments. Swimmers should note that there are no lifeguards at the lake, and as such are entering the water at their own risk.
Getting there: S21 to Mittlerer Landweg, bus line 330 to Billwerder Kirche
Dates: Mid-May - mid-September
Horster Damm 76 - 80, 21039 Hamburg
The Altengamme groundwater pool is located east of the neighbourhood of Bergedorf, where Hamburg becomes much quieter and less densely populated. Divided into non-swimmers and swimmers areas, this recreational freshwater pool offers everything that is needed for a nice summer day. Visitors will find lawn for sunbathing, trees for shade, a playground, restrooms and a kiosk. The pool is free of charge; however, there is no on-site parking.
Admission: S21 to Bergedorf, bus 228 to the stop Weg zum Freibad, which means ‘the way to the pool’
Dates: opening dates can vary year to year depending on weather, but Sommerbad Altengamme is usually open from mid-May until the end of September.
Please note: Cercariae may occur in the water. Check with authorities before swimming here.
The Allermöhe lake was created in 1984 and quickly became a much-appreciated retreat for people looking to enjoy a nice swim on a hot summer day. The lake’s northern shore is particularly great for swimming - plus it has sandy beach and sunbathing lawn as well. Showers, restrooms and a playground can be found here too. Parking is free of charge.
Getting there: S21 to Bergedorf, bus line 234 to Hilda-Monte-Weg
Dates: mid-May - mid-September
This lake is located near the neighbourhood of Allermöhe and has a beach and a small lawn. Restrooms are available, though there is no on-site parking. It should be noted that small children may have trouble with the relatively steep banks of the lake and there are no lifeguards .
Getting there: S21 to Mittlerer Landweg, bus line 221 to See. On weekends the 321 Badexpress bus from Mittlerer Landweg station brings visitors directly to the lake
Dates: mid-May - mid-September
This lake is located in the neighbourhoods of Vierlanden and Marschlanden, directly behind the levee that keeps the Elbe river in its bed. Surfers throw themselves into the mild waves in the western part of the lake, while the eastern banks are used mainly as a campground. South of the lake, families enjoy a day on the sandy beach. Several small kiosks sell food and beverages. Restrooms and free parking are also available.
Getting there: S21 to Tiefstack, bus line 120 to Hohendeicher See, Overwerder station
Dates: mid-May - mid-September
Every summer, a section of the lake in the middle of the Stadtpark city park is used as a freshwater outdoor swimming pool, complete with a waterslide and diving boards. Beach chairs are available to rent on the sandy shore and the surrounding meadows are perfect for sunbathing. Restrooms, showers, lockers and a kiosk can be found on site.
Admission: adults: €3.20, children under 16: €1.60
Getting there: U3 to Saarlandstraße
Visit Naturbad Stadtparksee online for more details concerning opening hours and dates.
Hohe Liedt 9, 22417 Hamburg
This outdoor freshwater pool in the north of Hamburg is great for all ages. In addition to the larger pool for swimming, there is also a smaller paddling pool and a playground for little ones. The large meadow offers plenty of space for sunbathing and trees for shade. Visitors can play beach volleyball, table tennis and even minigolf. A kiosk, a small beer garden and an area for grilling can all be found here as well. Parking is available.
Admission: adults: €3, children under 14: €1.50
Getting there: U1 to Kiwittsmoor
Visit Naturbad Kiwittsmoor online for more details concerning opening hours and dates.
Freibad Duvenstedt - open to club members
Puckaffer Weg 13, 22397 Hamburg
This large freshwater pool is divided into separate areas for swimmers and non-swimmers. Visitors can enjoy two waterslides, a large lawn, a smaller beach, a playground and a kiosk as well.
Admission: adults €2.50, children under 13: €1
Getting there: S1/S11 to Poppenbüttel, bus line 276 to Lohe
Visit Freibad Duvenstedt online for more details concerning opening hours and dates.
Located in the middle of Öjendorfer Park, the lake is home to two separate beaches, while its northern part belongs to a nature reserve. Sunbathing lawns are vast and perfect for grilling. The kiosk offers sweets, fries and drinks. Kids can use the playground or play table tennis and minigolf.
Getting there: U2 train to Merkenstraße, then walk or cycle the remaining 1.5 kilometres to the lake. Alternatively, U1 train to Wandsbek Markt, then bus line 263 to Gleiwitzer Bogen
Dates: opening dates can vary year to year depending on weather, but Öjendorfer See is usually open fir swimming from mid-May until the end of August.
This lake in the northern neighbourhood of Volksdorf is the only spot for nude sunbathing and swimming in the city of Hamburg, though guests with swim apparel are also welcome. The lake is located in a wonderful green area with a beach and meadow for relaxing. Lockers and showers are available on-site, as well as a waterslide, a diving board, a playground and courts for tennis and volleyball. Parking is free and a kiosk provides food and drinks.
Admission: 16 years and older: €4.50, children ages 6 - 15: €2.50, children under 6: free
Getting there: U1 to Buchenkamp
Visit Sommerbad Volksdorf online for more details concerning opening hours and dates.