Best Swimming Lakes near Westchester You Need To Discover

If you go to Lake Tiorati in Harriman State Park, plan to get there early. It can get crowded on hot summer weekends. Photo courtesty of New York State Parks
If you go to Lake Tiorati in Harriman State Park, plan to get there early. It can get crowded on hot summer weekends. Photo courtesty of New York State Parks
5/14/23 - By Marisa Iallonardo

Pools and splash pads are great for summer fun, but swimming lakes in and near Westchester are ideal destinations for cooling off in the great outdoors. While you'll only find a few local swimming lakes and rivers in Westchester County, the Hudson Valley offers plenty of places for freshwater swimming, including some spots that merit a day trip—or are worth visiting as part of an overnight stay at a nearby family campground.

Here, we've rounded up several lakes and rivers that are perfect for swimming with kids this summer, from the Hudson River to Lake Taghkanic.

Looking for even more fun in the sun? Check out our Summer Fun Guide.

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Editor's note: Please click through to the websites before venturing out. Lakes can close suddenly due to weather conditions and algae blooms. It's always best to check the official sites before loading up the kids. 

1. Croton Point Park – Croton

The season generally runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. 
Croton Point Beach offers swimmers an inviting stretch of the Hudson River nestled inside the 508-acre Croton Point Park. Area families can enjoy a day of playing in the sand and swimming in the river. Hang around after your swim and check out other activities at the park, like the hiking trails. 

RELATED: Splash Pads and Spraygrounds in Westchester and Hudson Valley

2. Lake Welch – Stony Point

Open weekends starting on May 25, 2024, then daily from Monday, June 17-Monday, September 2, 2024.
Part of Harriman State Park, this swimming spot is open every day in the height of the summer. Once the kids tire of the water–if that's even possible–there are fun hiking trails to check out. Hours to swim are 8am-8pm on weekdays and 7am-8pm on weekends.

RELATED: Best Swimming Pools for Westchester and Hudson Valley Families

3. Lake Tiorati – Southfields

Open weekends starting Saturday, May 25, 2024, then daily from Monday, June 17-Monday, September 2, 2024. 
Also located in Harriman State Park, this swimming spot offers lots for families to do along with swimming, like hanging out on the beach or enjoying a picnic. There are showers where you can wash up and change, and leashed dogs are welcome. Hours to swim are 8am-8pm on weekdays and 7am-8pm on weekends.

4. Canopus Lake – Carmel

The season generally runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. 
Situated in Fahnestock State Park, Canopus Lake has a large sandy beach, a designated swimming area, and multiple shady spots with picnic tables and grills. There is also a dock for fishing, and boats are available for rent at the park office. The park has a bathhouse with showers and a snack bar with hot food items as well as ice cream and beverages. There is also a campground if you want to make a weekend of it. 

RELATED: Easy NY State Park Hikes in the Hudson Valley

5. Lake Taghkanic — Ancram

The season generally runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. 
Looking for a great day trip? About 90 minutes from central Westchester, Lake Taghkanic State Park offers loads of family-friendly activities—from swimming in the lake and building castles on the beach to playing on the grass or the playground. For lunch, you can snag a picnic table and grill or skip the packing and visit the concession stand instead. For even more details on this action-packed spot, check out our full review.

6. Lake Minnewaska – Kerhonkson

The season generally runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. 
This beautiful glacial lake surrounded by towering rocky cliffs is perhaps one of the most picturesque swimming spots in the Hudson Valley. Located inside Minnewaska State Park just outside the town of New Paltz, the lake features a small beach and designated swimming area with a nice dock that's great for sunning or jumping off. The park has bathrooms and changing areas as well as a visitor center and miles of hiking and biking trails. For more things to do in Minnewaska State Park, check out our full review

RELATED: Best Beaches Near Westchester: Family Fun at the Shore

North-South Lake
Take a dip in family-friendly North-South Lake. Photo by Diana Kim

7. North-South Lake – Haines Falls

The season generally runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day. 
If you're hoping to take the family camping, consider North-South Lake Campground. It's a great spot for an overnighter or day trip that's about 2 hours away from central Westchester. Swimming is available at two beaches as long as a lifeguard is present. Call the campground for the exact hours. Kids can stay busy with many additional activities, from hiking to horseshoes to playing on the playground.

 

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