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5 must see freshwater swimming holes near Brisbane

Looking for a hidden fresh water rock pool to cool off in this Summer?

It would have been cooler to start this off with 5 ‘secret’ swimming holes near Brisbane.
But whilst these places aren’t ‘secret’ – they’re certainly secluded and off-the-beaten-track, making them feel private and hidden when you do get there!

On the North Side of Brisbane:

Rocky Hole, D’Aguilar National Park

The directions make it a little tricky to get there, but if you head up past the Gantry Day Use area, take a right onto the dirt track before you turn onto love days road (headed towards Neurum Creek bush camp area) and follow that down past the Falls Lookout turn off until you see the Rocky Hole parking area on the left. It’s a small carpark and usually only busy on a hot weekend day – but park up and then just head off down the bush track (there’s a few stairs) for a 2 minute walk down to the pools.

It’s best to visit after there’s been a good stint of rain so you can see the waterfall running and the water level is nice and high.

Once you’re finished, why not continue down the track on Love Days Road (make sure you take the traverse up at the bottom of the track) and take leisurely drive through the forest. See the itinerary here. You’ll end up coming out near Neurrum Creek Bush Retreat , which is a couple of minutes drive out of Woodford – you can also pay as a day visitor to go for a paddle in their rocky creek as well.

Get the directions and details for Rocky Hole here.

If a freshwater swim sounds good and you don’t have a 4×4, here are a couple of tried and tested alternatives that don’t need any special prerequisites:

Stony Creek Swimming Hole,

Stony Creek Swimming Hole Woodford - South East Queensland - Brisbane(This is a good second stop if you’re been to Rocky Hole as well, as it’s not far from where Love Days Rd comes out on the Northern End)

Head out from Woodford on the main road and a few kms out, turn right on to Stony Creek Road. Around a few corners and just past the rural fire station, turn into Fletchers Rd and follow it all the way to the end where you’ll see the Stony Creek carpark on the left before the track turns into a 4×4 track up to Bellthorpe National Park.

There’s a main track down past the toilets that will take you to a large manicured grassed area and deeper swimming hole.

Alongside the walking track down to the hole is also a clear pebble creek that lends itself to rock hopping and provides shallow running pools for children.

Get the directions and details for Stoney Creek here.


Cedar Creek Pools

If you’re looking for something a little closer to the city but just as refreshing, you have to check out Cedar Creek Pools (don’t confuse them with Cedar Creek Falls on the Gold Coast).

Cedar Creek Pools are located a few minutes out of Samford (between Samford and Dayborough). Take Cedar Creek Rd, off Rd and mozy on down the road towards the pools.

The landscape changes dramatically along the road (there’s even a pet Donkey families get out to say hi too along the way!).

Cedar Creek flows and criss crosses the road in multiple places so it’s not uncommon to see families pulled up and taking a dip in a secluded spot along the way.

There’s a main picnic and day use area with toilets on the left as you drive through, with shallow rock pools to paddle in, but if you continue down the road, you’ll see a shoulder on the eastern side of the road. If it’s not packed, park up and you can scramble your way down to the creek for some secluded and larger swimming holes. These aren’t great if you’ve got small children though as it can be a bit tricky to climb down.

If you continue down to the end of the road you’ll see a parking area across the bridge on the left.

There’s a large flat rock area that’s great for kids to paddle to the right of the bridge (be careful though, it can get slippery) – with a waist deep pool at the bottom of the rock.

Back up in front of the carpark, if you’re prepared to go rock hopping you can score yourself your own little rock pool (some with mini waterfalls).

Many people rock hope up the creek to a large swimming hole, but this is no longer open to the public and is privately owned, so do be pre-warned!

Get the directions and details for Cedar Creek Pools here.

If you’re on the South Side of Brisbane, check out these spots:

Cedar Creek Falls at Mt Tamborine

Best to go here on a weekday as weekends get super busy, and having to park further away can add an extra 2kms to your walk.

Head up Tamborine Mountain Rd and turn into Cedar Creek Falls Rd. Follow it to the end to Cedar Creek Falls lookout.

Once you’ve found a park and headed down the boardwalk to the lookout, you’ll need to walk on down through the forest and then do a bit of rock scrambling to get to the rock pools below.

It means you need to carry everything in and out so pack light!

Get the directions and details for Cedar Creek Falls here.

These ones don’t need any introduction.

Currumbin Rock Pools, Currumbin. 

Get the directions and details for Rocky Hole here.


Lake Moogerah

While not a rock pool or a running creek, Lake Moogerah is a great choice for families and water sports. There are acres of waterfront spots suitable for setting up a picnic or a shade tent.

Get the directions and details for Moogerah here.

Go on, take a dip!

With no risk of sharks, and spots for even the smallest of children, these places are great options if you need to cool off!

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