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Best Big Bear Lake Swimming: Best Spots, Water Condition and More

Best Big Bear Lake Swimming: Best Spots, Water Condition and More

Big Bear Lake, located in Southern California’s San Bernardino Mountains, has gained quite a reputation among nature lovers and adventure seekers as an exquisite getaway for those craving invigorating and picturesque swimming spots. With its majestic mountains embracing the surroundings and its pristine, transparent waters, Big Bear Lake presents itself as the perfect haven to beat the heat during the delightful summer months. So, if you’re all set to embark on a memorable trip to Big Bear Lake and eager to maximize your swimming escapades, allow me to introduce you to five of the most remarkable swimming spots that await your exploration.

Can You Swim in Big Bear Lake

Yes, you can swim in Big Bear Lake. The lake’s crystal-clear waters are not only perfect for swimming but also for a range of other water-based activities. Whether you’re a seasoned swimmer or just looking to cool off on a hot summer’s day, the lake is inviting to all. The clean and refreshing waters of Big Bear Lake offer a rejuvenating escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. It’s a serene oasis where you can unwind, connect with nature, and experience the pure joy of swimming in a mountain lake. Whether you prefer a leisurely float or an energetic swim, the pristine environment of Big Bear Lake provides an unparalleled aquatic experience for all.

5 Best Spots to Take a Dip at Big Bear Lake

1. Boulder Bay Park

Boulder Bay Park is a hidden gem on the eastern side of Big Bear Lake. This secluded and peaceful spot offers a small sandy beach area where you can take a dip and enjoy the tranquility of nature. The clear waters of Boulder Bay provide excellent visibility, making it a popular spot for snorkeling enthusiasts. If you prefer to stay on land, you can relax on the beach, have a picnic, or take a leisurely stroll along the shoreline. Boulder Bay Park is an ideal destination for those seeking a serene and less crowded swimming spot.

a group of people standing next to a river

2. Ski Beach Park

Ski Beach Park is an excellent destination for swimming in the pristine waters of Big Bear Lake. Its expansive shoreline and clear blue waters offer a wonderful swimming experience for visitors of all ages.

The designated swimming areas at Ski Beach Park are well-maintained and provide a safe and enjoyable environment for water activities. Whether you prefer a leisurely dip or an invigorating swim, the lake’s calm and refreshing waters are perfect for both.

The park’s amenities, such as water slides and kiddie pools, add extra fun to your swimming experience. The water slides provide a thrilling adventure for those seeking an adrenaline rush, while the kiddie pools offer a safe and shallow area for young children to splash around and have a great time.

Additionally, the presence of lifeguards ensures the safety of swimmers, giving you peace of mind while enjoying your time in the water. Their watchful eyes and expertise help create a secure environment, especially for families with children.

a view of a rocky mountain

3. Pleasure Point Marina

Pleasure Point Marina is a premier destination for water sports enthusiasts and boating aficionados. Located on the north shore of Big Bear Lake, this marina offers a wide range of activities and amenities to satisfy every visitor’s needs.

Lakefront Location: Pleasure Point Marina’s prime lakefront location provides easy access to the water. Visitors can enjoy a refreshing swim, go paddleboarding, or rent a kayak to explore the lake’s nooks and crannies. The marina also offers boat rentals for those looking to venture further into the vast expanse of Big Bear Lake.

Boat Rentals and Water Sports: Pleasure Point Marina offers a diverse selection of boat rentals, including pontoon boats, fishing boats, and jet skis. Adventure seekers can indulge in exhilarating water sports such as water skiing, wakeboarding, and tubing. The marina’s experienced staff ensures a safe and enjoyable experience for all.

a beach with a mountain in the background

4. Juniper Point Picnic Area

Juniper Point Picnic Area is a fantastic beach destination that’s perfect for families looking to have a memorable day. Located within Meadow Park, this spot offers a range of amenities, including public restrooms, snack stands, and swimming facilities, ensuring that you have all you need for a fun-filled day in the sun.

If you’re seeking a picturesque view, Juniper Point will exceed your expectations. Situated on the shoreline, this beach provides breathtaking sights of Big Bear Lake, allowing you to enjoy the natural beauty of the surroundings. It’s certainly a visual feast.

Juniper Point Picnic Area at Meadow Park is not only a wonderful spot for a beach day, but it also offers excellent swimming opportunities in the crystal-clear waters of Big Bear Lake.

Juniper Point’s designated swimming area is well-kept and provides a safe and pleasurable setting for swimmers of all skill levels. The chilly waters of Big Bear Lake are ideal for swimming and cooling off on hot summer days.

a tree in front of a body of water

5. Alpine Pedal Path

Nestled along the peaceful northern shore of the lake, this idyllic spot offers a haven for relaxation. Here, you can immerse yourself in the calming embrace of the shallow waters, creating a perfect setting for a leisurely swim. What adds to the charm is the presence of a 2.5-mile-long paved trail that runs parallel to the shoreline. This trail not only provides a path for exploration but also offers a front-row seat to the breathtaking scenery of the lake and the lush surrounding forest.

If you prefer to stay dry, you can embark on a leisurely bike ride, take a tranquil walk, or indulge in an invigorating jog along this picturesque route. The path is as diverse as the natural beauty that surrounds it, making it suitable for various outdoor activities. Moreover, this spot has got you covered for those who relish the idea of a delightful al fresco meal. There are numerous inviting benches and tables perfectly positioned for you to savor a picnic amidst the serenity of this breathtaking landscape. It’s a place where nature’s splendor and leisure converge in perfect harmony.

Best Big Bear Lake Swimming: Best Spots, Water Condition and More- 1

Location of these Points in Map

Safety Tips for Swimming in Big Bear Lake

While swimming in Big Bear Lake is a delightful experience, it’s essential to prioritize safety. To ensure a safe and pleasurable swim, follow these guidelines:

General Safety Precautions: Always swim with a buddy, especially in unfamiliar waters. Avoid swimming in restricted areas and heed any warning signs posted by park authorities. Respecting nature and the rules set forth for visitors’ safety is important.

Water Safety Guidelines: Be aware of your swimming abilities and limitations. If you’re not a confident swimmer, consider using a life jacket or other flotation devices. Watch out for underwater hazards, such as rocks or submerged debris.

Boating Safety Measures: If swimming near boat traffic, maintain a safe distance and be cautious of boats and other watercraft. Observe boating safety regulations and follow any instructions provided by boat rental companies or marina staff.

Sun Protection and Hydration: Apply sunscreen to your skin to protect it from dangerous UV radiation, and stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water. The combination of sun exposure and physical activity can lead to dehydration, so be mindful of your body’s needs.

Big Bear Lake

What are the things to bring to the beach?

A beach vacation is a perfect opportunity to relax and enjoy the outdoors. However, there are a few essential items you’ll need to bring to make sure you have a great time.

First, you’ll need some clothes to wear after swimming. Packing a couple of towels – one for drying off and one for sitting on is also a good idea.

You should also remember to pack a first aid kit, sunscreens and bug spray, mosquito repellent, and a swimsuit. These items will help you stay safe and comfortable while enjoying the beach.

Finally, don’t forget any personal belongings you might need, such as bags to carry wet clothes or umbrellas for shade. By following these tips, you can be sure to have a fun and enjoyable beach vacation!


Big Bear Lake offers a plethora of swimming spots that cater to different preferences and interests. Whether you’re looking for a family-friendly beach or a serene campground with swimming access, Big Bear Lake has it all. The natural beauty, recreational opportunities, and safety measures in place make it an ideal destination for a refreshing swim.


Are there any entrance fees for the swimming spots in Big Bear Lake?

Most swimming spots in Big Bear Lake are free to access. However, some parks or campgrounds may charge a nominal fee for parking or camping.

Can I bring my own water toys, such as inflatable rafts or paddleboards?

Yes, you can bring your own water toys to enjoy at the designated swimming spots. However, it’s important to adhere to safety guidelines and regulations set by park authorities.

Are pets allowed at the swimming spots in Big Bear Lake?

Pets are generally not allowed at designated swimming spots. However, some areas may have specific pet-friendly zones or trails where you can enjoy the outdoors with your furry friends.

Are there food and beverage options available near the swimming spots?

Many swimming spots in Big Bear Lake offer picnic areas equipped with BBQ grills, allowing visitors to bring and cook their own food. Additionally, there are nearby restaurants and cafes where you can grab a meal or refreshments.

Are swimming lessons available for beginners or children?

Yes, swimming lessons are available in the Big Bear Lake area. Local recreation centers and private swim schools offer lessons for beginners of all ages, ensuring a safe and enjoyable swimming experience.

How to get to Big Bear Lake?

Big Bear Lake is one of the most popular destinations in Southern California. The lake has many boat docks, hiking trails, and exploring fishing spots. It also offers some of the best swimming in the area. If you want to get there, take Interstate 210 east from Los Angeles and then head north on Highway 18 for about 20 miles. You’ll see the lake on your right.