10 Must-Have Essentials for Your Next Trip to the Pool

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Hot summer days in Calgary are perfectly complemented by a visit to the nearby outdoor swimming pool!

Whether you’re planning a solo outing, spending quality time with friends and family, or seeking a quick respite from the bustling city, a pool trip is an excellent way to unwind and cool off.

To make the most of your pool adventure, it’s crucial to come prepared. We have curated a comprehensive list of essential items that are must-haves for your next pool excursion. We’ve handpicked these essential items to guarantee you have a worry-free experience and avoid any potential regrets down the line. Our goal is to make sure you’re fully prepared, so you can enjoy your time at the pool without any unnecessary concerns. With these items in tow, you can relax and dive into the fun at one of our eight Calgary outdoor swimming pools!


The very first item on our list of essentials is finding the perfect swimsuit or swim trunks that make you feel like a total poolside superstar. Choose a swimsuit or swim trunks that make you feel comfortable and confident.


Bring along a couple of large, absorbent towels to dry off after your swim. Quick-drying microfiber towels are an excellent choice as they are lightweight, compact, and dry rapidly. We’re talking about those large, cozy towels that will wrap you up in pure comfort and dry you off in a jiffy.


Bring your favourite form of entertainment for those moments of relaxation and downtime. Whether it’s a captivating book, your summer hits list or podcast, or any other source of entertainment that brings you joy, make sure to have it by your side. Consider bringing along your favourite inflatables and toys that will add an extra layer of excitement to your pool experience. Just a friendly reminder, though: you’ll need to check in with the lifeguard for permission to use any floaties and toys. Generally, if the pool isn’t too crowded you’ll be able to share the pool space and make sure everyone can have a splashing good time without any disturbances!


Protecting your skin from harmful UV rays is vital, especially during our hot summer days. Pack a high-SPF sunscreen and make sure to apply it generously before and during visit. Remember to reapply it periodically, as sweat and water can diminish its effectiveness.

Sunglasses and a Hat

Get ready to rock the coolest summer style while staying safe under the Calgary sun! We know those summer rays can be intense, but we’ve got the perfect solution for you. Bring a pair of sunglasses to shield your eyes from the sun’s glare. Look for sunglasses with UV protection, because your eye safety is our top priority. And hey, why stop there? Level up your poolside fashion game by pairing those shades with a cute, trendy hat. Make sure to find something with a brim to ensure the sun is out of your face!

Flip-flops or Sandals

Walking around the pool area barefoot can be uncomfortable. We recommend investing in a pair of flip-flops or pool shoes to protect your feet from hot surfaces, potential slips, and poolside debris. Not only will it add extra protection from the sun’s rays, but it’s also the perfect opportunity to show off your stylish summer accessories that match your swimwear

Water Bottle

Keeping yourself hydrated is essential, especially when you’re basking under the hot summer sun. So, here’s the key to quenching your thirst and staying refreshed during your pool adventure: bring along a trusty reusable non-glass water bottle! No need to worry about searching for a drink or dealing with disposable containers. All eight COSPA pools have water dispensers to refill your reusable bottles.


Prepare for a poolside adventure that keeps you energized and satisfied! If you’re planning to soak up the sun for an extended period, it’s a great idea to pack some light snacks that will keep you fueled without succumbing to the summer heat. Think fruits, granola bars, or nuts that will keep your energy levels up. These healthy snacks are the perfect companions to ensure you stay refreshed, nourished, and ready to embrace all the fun under the sun.

At select Calgary outdoor pools, we’ve got you covered with fantastic concessions. So, if you happen to forget your water bottle or get a sudden craving, worry not! We’ve got a delightful array of drinks and food options for you to enjoy. Just a quick tip: be sure to check online to see if your local pool offers these concessions. If you’re concerned about specific food allergies or want to have your preferred snacks, packing your own treats is always a safe bet.

Waterproof Accessories

Although it is generally recommended not to bring valuables to the pool, we understand that there may be situations where it is necessary. To ensure the safety of your belongings, we strongly advise using waterproof bags or accessories that can keep them secure and dry. Consider investing in a waterproof phone case to protect your phone from splashes and submersion. Additionally, don’t forget to bring a waterproof bag to keep your towels and clothes dry. This way, you can have the luxury of slipping into cozy, dry clothes and wrapping yourself in comfort with a fresh towel at the end of your day at the pool!

Extra Clothes

Speaking of comfy dry clothes, we also recommend you pack a change of clothes for after your swim. Another pro tip is to bring a stylish cover-up or a light outfit specifically for those moments when you’re not splashing around in the water. It’s the perfect way to maintain your comfort and style while enjoying the poolside ambiance. Whether you’re lounging under the sun or taking a break from your aquatic adventures, having a chic cover-up or a fashionable outfit handy ensures you’ll always look and feel your best!

Before you embark on your pool adventure, take a moment to visit our website and check for any updates that might be relevant to your visit. Additionally, don’t forget to visit your local Calgary pools’ page for any vital information specific to that location. This includes details like whether you need to bring your own lock or have some coins handy for our coin-operated locks. But that’s not all! Take some time to explore your local pool’s schedule and discover the exciting array of amenities and programs available. You might find some fantastic surprises waiting for you!

We are thrilled to welcome you back to another unforgettable year at the Calgary Outdoor Swimming Pools Association! To ensure your spot and secure your swim time, we highly recommend booking your tickets online today. Get ready to dive into a summer of incredible fun and make a splash like never before!


The Calgary Outdoor Swimming Pools Association (COSPA) manages eight outdoor swimming pools on behalf of The City of Calgary for use by Calgarians during the summer.

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