While metro Detroit has miles of coastline, counting the river and Lake St. Clair, many residents struggle to find free or just public access places to swim. Given the high temperatures and perfect, sunny swimming weather this week, we decided to take a look at places to swim in and near Detroit.
Belle Isle Beach
This sandy beach on Belle Isle has modest showers and locker rooms and allows swimmers free access to the Detroit River. While the cordoned swimming area is a bit shallow, there's nothing quite like swimming in the river while taking in views of the city. For $3, there's even all-day access to a water slide that's just tall enough to be fun, but not so big it terrifies the kids.
Chandler Park Aquatic Center
Prices for a day of swimming range from $2 for "tots" to $7 for adults, assuming you're a Wayne county resident. All others pay $1 more for admission. This massive water park in Chandler Park (hence the name) has a 15,000-square-foot wave pool, two 20-foot-tall water slides, and a "splish-splash land" of sprinklers and fountains for the littlest swimmers.
Lake Saint Clair Metropark
Just minutes from downtown Detroit, Lake Saint Clair Metropark offers 1000 feet of public beach access, a boat launch, and a swimming pool with a water slide and kid-friendly "squirt zone." There's also a 1,600 foot boardwalk that lets visitors take in the stunning shore views, nature trails (meadows! marshlands! cottonwood grove!) and stellar bird-watching including over 230 species. The park is open from 11am-7pm daily and is $7 a vehicle for entry and pool use is $4 a day per person.
Lake Erie Metropark
Less than 30 minutes from the city in Brownstown, the metro area's only Lake Erie beach has views of the great lake, but only offers swimming in its massive wave pool, as the rocky shoreline isn't exactly swim friendly. Prices are the same as at Lake Saint Clair, but there's a $4 twilight rate if you swim after 5 pm.
·Swimming at Belle Isle [Belle Isle State Park]
·Chandler Park Attractions [Chandler Park Aquatic Center]
·Lake Saint Clair Metropark [Lake Saint Clair Metropark]
·Swimming at Lake Erie Metropark [Lake Erie Metropark]