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10 Things To Know Before Your First Swimming Holiday

By Jack Hudson , 22 February, 2024

Our active holidays are safe, comfortable and always exciting. You don’t have to take our word for it, we’ve picked out insights from SwimTrekkers last year to help introduce you to your first ever swimming trip...

Newcomers, fear not, we all have the same concerns when we join our first adventure in open water. One of the most exciting aspects of a holiday with us is the fact that no two swims are the same. Every experience you have in the water is enhanced by unique variables: wildlife, weather conditions and fellow swimmers as well.

In this blog, we've relied on the knowledge of past SwimTrekkers to explain exactly why this is something to look forward to. Also, we'll try to convey why your first swimming holiday with us is likely to be the start of a long and rewarding aquatic journey together.

You can also learn more about what to expect from your upcoming trip on our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Let's dive in!


10. It’s Safe

Swims in open water are not always guided in our community, which poses some risks. However, every adventure you take with SwimTrek is fully guided and we will give you the freedom explore the water safely, backed by the security provided by our safety escorts.

You may also wish to purchase a wetsuit to increase your comfort levels in cooler waters and swim shoes to protect your feet on rocky terrain.


9. You’ll Have Time To Explore

It's important to remember this is a holiday - we will certainly give you time to explore each swim spot and discover extra activities to enhance your holiday.

If you need to take a break during a swim you are welcome to jump on support boats at any time. On trips where we use kayaks rather, instead of support boats, your guides will be able to advise you on various options for getting out of the water and walking sections of the route, where possible.


8. Everyone Swims At Their Own Pace

The majority of our guests swim front crawl (freestyle), but we accommodate breaststrokers too. Having different swimming groups means you can swim whatever stroke you want. We also often have a wide range of swimming speeds on each departure, with guests covering 1km in the open water in anything from 10-40 minutes.

One of the great features of a SwimTrek trip is that we cater for this range of swimming speeds. At the start of your trip, your guides will carry out an acclimatisation swim with all guests, which will then be used to group together swimmers of a similar speed.


7. You Can Travel Light And Stay Relaxed

For a safe and enjoyable SwimTrek trip, we recommend the list of essentials on our Packing List page. For some locations, specific equipment requirements are added to each trip page. SwimTrek will supply swim hats, water and electrolyte drinks and refill your bottles throughout the trip.

More information on what we recommend that you bring with you on a particular trip, please see the ‘Trip Info’ tab of the relevant package page.


6. Each Location Is Unique

Every single SwimTrek trip is different. Not only do we have different trip types, from Liveaboards to YogaSwims. We also travel to a variety of incredible locations around the world, including Hawaii and Indonesia. Of course, we monitor up-to-date travel advice for each of our locations and ensure every package page is kept updated with relevant information.

The well-being of each and every person who is involved in a SwimTrek holiday is always at the forefront of our minds. For more information on how travel varies by location, visit our Travel Advice page.


5. Swimming Is Good For You

Swimming is a great exercise for your body and mind. Unlike running or a gym workout, swimming is very kind to your body as it doesn’t put stress on your bones due to the water buoyancy. There has also been much research into the positive effects that open water swimming can have on mental health - being in the water allows you to take a break from the busy pressures of modern life.

Swimming does also work your cardiovascular system and it does use most of the muscles of the body, working your heart as well.


4. You’ll Make Exciting New Discoveries

One of the great joys of open water swimming is that it gives you the chance to appreciate the incredible range of wildlife, natural topography and underwater vistas that most people never get the chance to see.

The type of marine life that you may encounter on your trip varies considerably from once location to the next. We’ve been known to swim with everything from curious dolphins and inquisitive seals to laid-back sea turtles and exotic reef fish.


3. We Help With Your Technique

Our world class SwimTrek coaches and guides are all experienced open water swimmers themselves. They will be able to offer advice and tips to help improve your swimming abilities. Swimmers are split into smaller speed groups, so we ensure all guests are swimming at an appropriate pace and learning from each other throughout the holiday as well.

Before your trip, you can download our comprehensive Training Plan for all the information that you'll need to get the most out of your holiday.


2. You’ll Make Friends

Many SwimTrekkers join our trips as solo travellers and end up with an incredible group of friends who share a love for the open water. As swimming is a low impact, medium intensity activity, it enables a wide variety of ages and experience levels to take part in our trips.

Your fellow guests could include young students, retired couples, solo travellers, groups of friends, experienced open water swimmers or those unfamiliar with life outside the pool. Whatever the makeup of your group, you can be sure that you’ll have a mix of fascinating personalities from all around the world who share a common love of the great outdoors.


1. Your Guides Look After You

Every swimming group is accompanied by its own support vessel on each swim. On most trips, these vessels usually consist of one main boat and two inflatable boats. However, on some of our lakes and rivers trips (where we are unable to use motorised vessels) our friendly guides will accompany swimmers in support kayaks. Your vessel escorts and guides are there to provide safety cover, drinks and snacks, as well as assist with improving your technique over the course of your trip.


We hope your enjoyed this introduction to your first ever SwimTrek swimming holiday. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to drop us a message in the comments section below...


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