I was scrolling through Facebook and stumbled upon what has to be the coolest pool in all of New Jersey and, even better, it's a public pool.

Thank you Facebook algorithm for showing me the post, even though I don't follow the page.

Located about an hour and forty-five minutes from Toms River, the Highlands Natural Pool is located in Ringwood.

What makes the Highlands Natural Pool unique?

As the name suggests, this public pool is natural. The water in the pool is fed by the Blue Mine Brook, making it a spring-fed freshwater pool.

Highlands Natural Pool
Highlands Natural Pool via Facebook

According to their site, "In 1935, the pool was carved out of a hillside by the New York chapter of The Nature Friends who owned what was then called Camp Midvale. In 1997 the pool was sub-divided from the former Camp property..."

Highlands Natural Pool

The first thing I thought of when I saw a photo of the pool was a scene in the movie Atonement. There is a river that runs through the property of the house where they have a diving board and a deck for sunbathing.

Was that a relatively niche reference? Maybe, I just really love that movie.

While I loved my childhood taking swimming lessons at the Toms River pool, this pool would've been almost magical to learn how to swim in.

The pool has picnic tables and charcoal grills around to make a day out of your pool visit.

If you are the athletic type, there is a beach with a volleyball court and ping pong tables for some fun.

There are also multiple hiking trails around the pool at the Norvin Green State Forest.

How much does it cost to go to the Highlands Natural Pool?

It costs $20 for adults 18+, $15 for seniors 65+, $15 for active military/veterans, $10 for children 3-17, and kids 2 and under are free.

They do offer memberships that give you members-only swimming hours, free picnic table and grill reservations, access to the pool, and a reserved parking area.

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When does the Highlands Natural Pool open?

The pool opens for Memorial Day Weekend.

After that, it will be open on Saturdays and Sundays until the end of June.

July until Labor Day Weekend the pool is open daily.

In September they are open on Saturdays and Sundays.

Operating hours for the pool are 12 PM until 6 PM.

Check out their site for more information here.

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Gallery Credit: Matt Ryan

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