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11 Outdoor Pools to Cool Your Heels In

It isn't the ocean but it's blue and it'll do.
By May 7, 2020 Activities
With the heat pushing 40 degrees celsius and the soles of your sneakers slowly melting to the pavement, maybe it's time to find some relief. A small, chlorinated pool of relief. Many pools like Dino Beach water park aren't opening this year, same for the popular Mandarin City Pool. But there's hope! We checked in with as many pools as we could find, and, lo and behold, some are open! See where to swim and tan this weekend.

Playa Maya

888 Linhu Lu, near Linyin Da Dao View Listing Taxi Printout

The water park ended up opening this year. The standard mask and suishenma are required for entry as is your passport, or a photo of it. Reservations via Playa Maya’s WeChat (playamayash) are needed as well. Day tickets are 220rmb at the gate or 210rmb in advance online. Evening tickets with entry starting at 4pm cost 190rmb. You can spend the whole day at the park, it’s open 9.30am to 9.30pm.

Sofitel Shanghai Sheshan Oriental

3388 Sichen Lu, Sijing Town, Songjiang District View Listing Taxi Printout

Indoor and outdoor pools are open at the luxury hotel out west. A reservation is not needed, just show up and pay the 300rmb for adults, 150rmb for kids door price. The pool is open 8am-7pm.

Radisson Blu Forest Manor Hongqiao

839 Jinfeng Lu, near Tianshan Xi Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

Having played host to a pool party already this summer, the Radisson’s substantial outdoor pool is open to outside visitors. No reservations are needed but a swimming cap is, and can be bought on site for 25rmb. The pool costs 250rmb on weekdays and 380rmb on weekends for adults. Kids get 100rmb entry during the weekday and 190rmb on the weekend. The pool is open 8am to 7pm.

New Star (Minhang)

Lane 258, Jinhui Nan Lu near Hongquan Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

The Korean bathhouse’s Pudong and Minhang locations have their outdoor pools up and running. No reservations are needed, but swimming caps are and can be purchased there. Adult entrance costs 118rmb, but they have a deal at the door and on Dianping for around 75rmb, making it one of the most affordable outdoor pools in town. The pool is open 10am to 8pm in Pudong and 9am to 7pm in Minhang.

Purple Mountain

778 Dongfang Lu, near Zhangyang Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

It costs 200rmb to swim at Purple Mountain’s outdoor pool. No caps, no reservation and they provide towels. Opening hours are 10am to 10pm.

Oasis Riviera Pool

883 Shuicheng Lu, near Tianshan Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

If you are lucky to know someone that lives in this residential complex, maybe you can tag along as a guest to the outdoor pool. Non-residents still need to pay 128rmb to get in.


W Shanghai – The Bund 4/F, 66 Lvshun Lu, near Dongchangzhi Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

Swim at the W Hotel. Their outdoor pool has a view of the Lujiazui skyline and is open to the public from 10am-6pm. Day passes to the fitness center, which includes the indoor and outdoor pools, are 480rmb Monday through Thursday and 580rmb for the weekend. Alternatively, the monthly pass is 3,000rmb. Towels are provided and you don’t need a swim cap.

Grand Plaza Club House

568 Julu Lu, near Shaanxi Nan Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

This pool is super popular for its downtown location on Julu Lu, though the surrounding apartment blocks throw some shade on the experience at certain times of day. Entry is 100rmb on weekdays and 150rmb on weekends. Open 9am-7pm. They provide towels but you’ll need to bring along your own swim cap to enter.

Ambassy Club

1500 Huaihai Zhong Lu, near Wulumuqi Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

Ambassy Club is not technically open to the public but they'll let you do a "one-day trial" for 150rmb (adults) or 80rmb (kids). If you opt for membership, the one-month fitness pass is 1,150rmb for singles and also gets you access to the gym, spa, fitness classes and sauna. The pool is small but so are all the other outdoor pools in Shanghai. It's a good one for kids. Open 8am-9pm.

JW Marriott Tomorrow Square

399 Nanjing Xi Lu, near Huangpi Bei Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

The Eye of Sauron building at People’s Square has an outdoor pool that back in May was only open to hotel guests but is now open to outside visitors too, hurray! The pool is open 9am to 9pm and costs 288rmb for a day pass every day of the week. Swimming caps aren’t required for the outdoor pool.

The Portman Ritz-Carlton

Shanghai Centre, 1376 Nanjing Xi Lu, near Xikang Lu View Listing Taxi Printout

The pool is both indoor and outdoor, with a swim-through tunnel connecting the two. It’s on the eighth floor patio area. There are chairs to sunbathe on though depending on the time of day, the sun might be blocked by apartment towers. Enter on the seventh floor for registration and changing rooms. They provide towels, hair wash, body wash, robes, swimming caps to borrow for free and caps to buy.


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