Things to do

London's sexiest lidos: first you swim, then you feast

After a dip in one of London's sexiest lidos, chisel your Olympian physique with ace food and booze a short stroll away

Tooting Bec Lido

“Yo, off for a length!” you shout, only to return to your towel two days later, with six litres of water in your lungs, having underestimated this 90-metre monster. Biggest one in England, mate! It’s huge! Toast your brush with death in the relaxing Wheatsheaf pub, before fuelling yourself back to full strength with Chicken Shop’s top-drawer rotisserie.

Brockwell Lido Brockwell Lido

Brockwell Lido

The café at this Olympic-sized lido is a thumbs-up-from-Hyde outpost. Bit family, though. Bit nice. Not right for an absolute madlad like you! Instead, focus your post-pool crosshairs on street-food bonanza Pop Brixton and its giant screen showing Olympic events. It’s a 15-min walk, so get some booze energy in you at The Florence (right outside the lido) before setting off.

King's Cross pond lido London's sexiest lidos: first you swim, then you feast

King’s Cross Pond

Gotta love a quick dip in an eco-friendly art instalment, right guys? Oh, you heard: this one’s a piece of art. Splashy art that blocks your ear canal. When you’re all arted out, dry yourself off and drink something stronger than art water at Granary Square’s The Lighterman, then get your art-pruned fingers around Spanish tapas at nearby Camino.

London Fields Lido London's sexiest lidos: first you swim, then you feast 1

London Fields Lido

No emasculating toe-dipping here: we got a warm one, lads! London’s only 50-metre heated outdoor public pool is dead inviting during the summer, and totally ‘Grammable during the frozen months, with all that eerie steam rising like a scene from a trashy slasher flick. No shortage of good eats and drinks in these parts either, but the street boozing at The Cat & Mutton and set-menu plates at Pidgin get our vote.

Parliament Hill Lido Parliament Hill Lido
Photo: Matt Walters

Parliament Hill Lido

Let the pond-dwelling frog dodgers of Hampstead’s bathing pools have their “fun”, and jump into this 1930s Art Deco treat at the southern end of the Heath instead. Our top tip? Get there on a Tuesday with a mate, and then stroll to The Stag at Belsize Park for the special 50% off food discount. It fills out quick, so opt for recently spit-polished The White Horse and their Lebanese menu if it’s all too hectic.

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