Aquaboulevard is my happy place. Even if all the other great features of Paris disappeared (food, beauty, architecture, art, museums, etc.) I would consider living in Paris for the combination of Aquaboulevard & Forest-Hill alone.
What is Aquaboulevard? – If you read the promotional blurbs on its website, it is “le plus grand parc aquatique d’Ile de France.” The Paris tourist office has a slightly different take ” It is the biggest urban water park in Europe, boasting two wave pools, 11 giant water slides, indoor and outdoor jacuzzis, lazy rivers and a 4,000 m² stretch of sandy beach dotted with more than 30 straw huts imported from Mauritius, plus a whole slew of water games.”
Is that all it is? I had looked at the website and thought that was all it was. We used to go by on our way to rowing and saw crowds going in and out of the building where it is located. I didn’t understand how that many people could be going to the waterpark, especially since I didn’t know there was an outdoor area as well — nor the Forest-Hill Club. Here is a shot of the pool at night. Note the disco-like lighting!
What is Forest-Hill Club? Well, this is where it gets interesting. It turns out that Aquaboulevard and Forest-Hill club are in the same complex and part of the same fitness group. So I could join the fitness club AND get access to Aquaboulevard. So I did.
As a tourist to Paris do you care? Probably not. It is expensive to go for 1 day (33 euros currently) and that only gets you access to Aquaboulevard.
As someone who lives in Paris do you care? YES! The combination of the two (Aquaboulevard and Forest-Hill) gets you access to OVER 300 fitness classes a week, over 100 treadmills, over 100 exercise bikes, 30 ergs, and countless other fitness options (like tennis courts and squash courts!). Here is a shot of ONE day of classes.
How is the swimming? It is fantastic. It is the best kept secret for lap swimmers in Paris. Okay, I admit there are no lane lines for laps! But if you go in the off hours such as during the weekday you have tons of space to swim. On weekends, it is a different story as the pool is full of kids (AND I haven’t been there yet during the summer when I imagine it will be much different). However, even in the afternoon on a weekend I still manage to get in a good swim over in the section that has the lazy river. Not as many people go there and I can also swim against the current!
Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!