Natural Water Experiences in PA

Dive into summer like a pro at these natural water gems—including waterholes, pools, and slides—that'll keep you feeling cool in PA!

1. Blue Hole in Jacob’s Creek


Escape the city heat and discover the refreshing allure of Blue Hole, a mere hour’s drive south of downtown Pittsburgh. A beloved summer spot for locals, this natural oasis boasts a unique, natural diving board — a rock jutting over a picturesque waterfall on Jacob’s Creek. Plunge into the deep pool created by the cascading waters and make a splash in this hidden gem of Pennsylvania!

2. Racoon Creek State Park

Beaver County

Nestled within Raccoon Creek State Park and just a breezy 30-mile drive west of Pittsburgh, you’ll find the ultimate summer escape. Dive into fun at the park's 101-acre Raccoon Lake, beckoning adventurers to explore its tranquil waters. The lake boasts a 500-foot, ADA-accessible sand and turf beach with a bathhouse and concession stand nearby, open every day from late May to mid-September. The park is ideal for a Great American Getaway in PA with its mix of rustic and modern campsites for tents and RVs, modern cabins, and the Lakeside Lodge that can sleep up to ten of your family and friends!

3. Beltzville State Park Beach

Carbon County

Kick your summer vibes into high gear at Beltzville State Park. Unfurl your beach towel, lather on some sunscreen, and prepare for a day of shoreside fun. The park features a sprawling 525-foot sandy beach conveniently located near the Park Office and Day Use Area. Jump into the cool waters for a refreshing swim — just remember, swimming is at your own risk. The beach is open from late May to mid-September, with a fully equipped bathhouse offering showers and a food and refreshment concession stand to keep you and your family fueled all summer long.

4. Meadow Run Creek Natural Waterslide

Fayette County

Experience the thrill of nature's waterslides at Ohiopyle State Park, one of Pennsylvania's premier destinations for outdoor adventure. Located along Meadow Run near its meeting point with the Youghiogheny River, these natural wonders offer a refreshing way to cool off on a hot summer day. The creek's waters have sculpted a narrow, twisting channel through the rock, creating a waterslide-like experience as you glide downstream. Spend a day with friends or family discovering the joy of slipping and sliding through nature's own waterpark!

5. Sickman’s Mill


For a delightful summer afternoon activity in Lancaster County, venture to Sickman's Mill in Pequea, situated along the picturesque Pequea Creek. Dating back to 1752, this historic mill has served various purposes, from distilling to sawmilling and flour milling. Experience a leisurely day by renting a tube at the mill to float down Pequea Creek. The journey typically lasts 1-2 hours, depending on the creek levels. As you float, keep your eyes peeled for herons, hawks, and even eagles soaring above while you enjoy your journey through the serene waters.

6. Rainbow Falls at Trough Creek State Park

Huntingdon County

Experience the innate beauty of Trough Creek State Park in Huntingdon County on a warm summer day. The park's 541 acres feature stunning attractions including Rainbow Falls and Balanced Rock. Pack your hiking gear and walk along the path to Balanced Rock, which offers a bridge overlooking Rainbow Falls. This picturesque waterfall cascades like a staircase, providing the perfect, refreshing spot to cool off for a few hours and relax under the park's lush foliage. There’s no need to rush back home. You can rent the historic, thoroughly modernized and ADA-accessible, former ironmaster’s home built in the mid-1800s to stay overnight.

7. Lake Hydra Diving


For an out-of-the-box, underwater experience just six miles north of downtown Bethlehem, discover the aquatic paradise of Lake Hydra Scuba. Formerly known to divers and locals as Dutch Springs, the former limestone quarry has been transformed into a haven for divers boasting exceptional water clarity and pristine conditions with its spring-fed waters. As the premier diving location in the Lehigh Valley, if not the northeast, divers of all levels can sign up to plunge into an unforgettable underwater adventure.

Looking for more fun outdoor activities in PA this summer? Be sure to check out more outdoor adventures on the VISIT PA website. Follow us on Facebook, X , Pinterest, YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram for more PA inspiration. Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly PA travel e-newsletter so you never miss an update!

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