Summer Swimming Holes in Connecticut

A day’s outing to a lovely natural swimming hole must rank among the quintessential delights of summertime. As a guest of ours at Winvian Farm, you don’t have to work too hard to track down this defining seasonal pleasure.

Connecticut in general and the secluded northwest come well-endowed with primo swimming holes, and in honor of summer’s official debut we thought we’d spotlight three of the ones easiest to reach from our luxurious Litchfield Hills resort. Needless to say, don’t forget your swimsuit when you come stay with us…

Satan’s Kingdom (New Hartford)

Granted, this isn’t the most appealing name for a destination, but actually Satan’s Kingdom State Recreation Area is one of the best spots in the region for outdoor recreation. Tubing through the Satan’s River Gorge will bring you to some nice calm pools along the Farmington River absolutely ideal for taking a dip.

The put-in is close to New Hartford, only about 45 minutes northeast of our resort. Bring your own inner tube and life jacket, or rent your gear from the local outfitter, Farmington River Tubing.

Lake Waramaug (New Preston)

Just a half-hour west of Winvian Farm lies pretty, hill-tucked Lake Waramaug, definitely on the short list of Connecticut’s loveliest natural lakes. Named after Chief Waramaug, whose Wyantecock band summered in this area, the 660-acre lake forms the centerpiece of Lake Waramaug State Park and offers some inviting waters for an afternoon swim.

Riga Falls (Salisbury)

A trek to the swimming hole at Riga Falls from Winvian Farm takes you through lovely countryside to one of the treasures of New England: the Taconic Range, home to some of the most extensive forestlands left in the region. The Mount Riga Plateau makes a rugged, woodsy paradise of Connecticut’s border with New York, and it’s within Mount Riga Preserve that you’ll find one of the nicest places to soak anywhere in the state.

The small, shallow, but mighty inviting swimming hole lies nooked in one of the deep ravines that cut the Taconics, a kind of plunge pool below the beautiful cascades of Riga Falls along Wachocastinook Creek. Cooling off in this shady waterfall pool is the perfect cap to a hike up nearby Bear Mountain or Mount Frissell (highest peak in Connecticut).

The Riga Falls swimming hole is within an hour’s drive of Winvian Farm. From Salisbury, turn on Factory Street and follow signs for the Mount Riga Preserve on a road that eventually becomes unpaved as it follows Wachocastinook Creek upstream into the plateau. Just shy of three miles out of town, you’ll come to a pullout on the right with an obvious trail dropping down into the ravine.

Any of these three swimming holes makes an awesome day trip from Winvian Farm. And speaking of soaks, don’t forget our very own 40-foot swimming pool here at the resort—not to mention the Hydrotherapy Tub Treatment available at our spectacular on-site spa!


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