Swim Here Now: Hong Kong's Best Pools

CNN/Stylemagazine.com Newswire | 9/1/2015, 9:55 a.m.
Say "Hong Kong," and "great swimming" isn't exactly the first thing that leaps to mind. Shopping or dim sum, sure, ...
The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong – Even without the sky displayed on ceiling-mounted LED screens, swimmers at the Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong feel the altitude in the world's highest indoor infinity pool.

By Latifah Al-Hazza

for CNN

HONG KONG (CNN) -- Say "Hong Kong," and "great swimming" isn't exactly the first thing that leaps to mind.

Shopping or dim sum, sure, but swimming pools?

Turns out, along with all its other superlatives, Hong Kong is loaded with picturesque pools.

Including the world's highest pool, a natural infinity pond on a mountainside and an array of public water parks, these are the city's coolest places to cool off.

Hotel pools

The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong

The pool at the Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong is breathtaking, thanks to the view, the altitude and, of course, the swim.

On the 118th floor at 484 meters above the street in the tallest building in Hong Kong, it's the world's highest swimming pool.

The ceiling and walls are made up of 144 LED screens displaying soothing illustrations of tree canopies, coral reefs and other nature scenes.

There's also an outdoor Jacuzzi.

W Hong Kong

If you have only one nice swimsuit, save it for the W Hotel Hong Kong.

On the 76th floor, its swimming pool is Hong Kong's highest rooftop pool.

The hotel's signature WET deck is renowned for stylish and occasionally wild poolside parties in summer.

WET also features a good cocktail bar and a Jacuzzi.

Hotel Indigo Hong Kong

One of Hong Kong's unique experiences is swimming in Hotel Indigo's glass-bottom pool.

The pool protrudes from the hotel, allowing people below to see swimmers and the swimmers to do laps while checking out the traffic below.

The pool is small compared to those found in other local hotels, but the Instagram photo op -- taken by a friend below while you swim -- makes up for it.

The pool is open only to Hotel Indigo guests.

Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong

The Four Seasons gorgeous infinity pool overlooks Victoria Harbor.

Even cooler, the hotel pipes in underwater music, making the swim that much more surreal.

Or annoying, depending on your taste in music.

There's also a lap pool, whirlpool and ice-cold plunge pool on the same scenic deck.

The pool is open only to hotel guests.

Natural pools

Man Cheung Po infinity pool, Tai O

Man Cheung Po – This free and magnificent infinity pool is located in the village of Tai O. The pond was formed when a dam was built in a gorge with a waterfall.

Man Cheung Po – This free and magnificent infinity pool is located in the village of Tai O. The pond was formed when a dam was built in a gorge with a waterfall.

Hong Kong is home to a breathtaking natural infinity pool.

From the village of Tai O, the hike to the pool at Man Cheung Po (or 10,000 Feet Waterfall) is a popular local outing.

The pool was "naturally" formed when a dam was built in a gorge with a waterfall.

The views of mountaintops and the sea in the distance make the sweaty one-hour trek worth it.

Bride's Pool, Tai Mei Tuk

Bride's Pool is a series of pools and waterfalls near Tai Mei Tuk in the New Territories.

Visitors reach the crystal clear pool by hiking the Bride's Pool Nature Trail, a scenic, kid-friendly trail.

A highlight before reaching the 15-meter-high Bride's Pool waterfall is a historic bridge built by locals in 1906.

Picnic tables and barbecue pits are located near the pool.