Kapiti News

Families find relaxing haven at outdoor pool

Waikanae Park idyllic backdrop to enjoy fun in water

- Kāpiti Jonathan Thompson

Few places these days retain the old-school charm of yesteryear. Even fewer remind you of your own childhood adventures. Thankfully, the Ka¯ piti Coast is packed with such places, making it both an idyllic location to visit, as well as an ever popular area to call home.

One location that never ceases to impress is the Waikanae Swimming Pool. Set against the bushy backdrop of Waikanae Park, the outdoor pool complex is a dream to behold. A significan­tly sized greenspace surrounds the pool area, creating ample room for families to gather together under the shelter of establishe­d trees, or the shade of gazebos brought in from home. Picnic rugs and BBQs are a common sight, and unlike indoor complexes, there’s a tendency for people to make the most of their time at the pool — some staying for the better part of the day. Everything has a relaxed vibe.

Smiles abound on the faces of children, adults, and even the lifeguards. The pools themselves are a joy to swim in. The water is heated to a sumptuous temperatur­e — not lukewarm, but truly wellheated. In fact, having swum in all of our incredible Ka¯ piti pools, I can confirm from recent experience that the Waikanae Pool, despite its outdoor setting, is easily the warmest. Go figure.

There are three pools to choose from, each bigger and slightly cooler than the last. There’s a toddler’s pool with water fountain, a mediumsize­d pool providing thighhigh depth for adults and anything up to head-high depth for the wee ones, and a large lane pool that is often partitione­d into lane swimming and play areas — the latter often features a fun, inflatable obstacle track. And

of course, there’s the wonderful hydroslide. Built atop a steep bank, the fullyenclo­sed hydroslide plunges its riders into complete darkness — at least for most of the ride. There’s so much to do

at Waikanae Swimming Pool. Pack your hat and sunblock, a picnic rug, even a chilly bin — or purchase snacks from the tuckshop inside. Iceblocks, icecreams, drinks, pies and more are on offer. Keep in mind that the pool is an alcohol-free zone.


The Waikanae Swimming Pool operates seasonally, from the end of November to the

near-end of March. It’s open Monday and Thursday, 6am6pm; Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 6am-8pm; and 7.30am-8pm on weekends. Under the Covid traffic light system, session times are operating. Contact the pool on 04 296 4789 for more info.

BBQs can be hired for $10 per hour, plus a $20 refundable bond, or you can bring your own in for free.

The pool hosts a number of activities, including aquafit classes, kids games and inflatable­s, and a Learn to Swim programme. Informatio­n on these activities and a lane swimming schedule are on the council website.

 ?? ?? Enjoying time at Waikanae Swimming Pool.
Enjoying time at Waikanae Swimming Pool.
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