Swimming Areas in Big Bear Lake
In all the 22 miles of shoreline around Big Bear Lake there is only one public swimming area located at Meadow Park on the South Shore. In addition to the closed in swimming area with lifeguards on duty, Meadow Park also has several picnic and barbecue areas, softball field, tennis courts and two different playground areas.
41220 Park Ave.
From Big Bear Blvd. turn North on Knight Ave.
(Taco Bell) go 4 blocks to the swimming area.
Here's a Google Map of Meadow Park
The BEST Swimming Area in Big Bear Lake!
The Best Place To Go Swimming in Big Bear Lake is right next to China Island on the far western side of the lake. China Island (aka Treasure Island) is the only island on Big Bear Lake that still has several small China Hut's built right into the granite boulders that were used by some of the Chinese People that helped build the Big Bear Dam nearly 100 years ago.
The actual swimming area is the large granite boulders sticking out of the lake on the left side of China island approximately 30' away.
There is several places on the rock outcropping to jump in the lake from. Depending on the water level of big Bear Lake, you can jump anywhere from 5' all the way up to approx. 30' high. If your one of those daring folks that just cant resist jumping from the highest point, your best bet is to jump on the side looking right at China island. There is a very large boulder down there on your right hand side which is not always visible when the lake gets full, so make sure you jump straight out and to the left.
If your really stupid, err I mean Adventurous and want try jumping from the other side facing the Cabin on the Shore, just be sure nobody is swimming down there or another jumper isn't about to jump from a lower level. You have to take almost a running start to clear the first rock sticking out and you CANNOT see below you til it's to late. Take a good look at the boulders beneath the water level first which you can see and pick your spot very carefully. This really is not advisable as there are plenty of other good places to jump into Big Bear Lake that are much safer.
Getting to China island without a Boat can sometimes be a challenge if you do not find one of the few parking spaces on the Highway that's available. Coming from the Dam and heading towards Big Bear, the road takes an immediate right and goes a few hundred yards before it takes an immediate left. A few hundred yards further the road veers to the right again and just past this point is the parking lot on the other side of the road. The parking spot only holds 8 to 10 vehicles Max. so it usually fills up fast especially on really nice hot summer weekends.
Once you find a parking space, follow the trail down towards the Lake until you come across the dirt road approx.75 yards. Go to your left on the road for maybe 20 yards and you will see another trail on your right. Follow that trail for maybe another 100 yards and you will definitely know when you get there as it looks like Mother Nature properly formed the ultimate swimming area in amongst huge granite boulders.
China Island itself is private property so it's not advisable to swim out there and jump from the rooftops, oops, did I say that, but all the other rock outcroppings and all along the bank heading North is all fair game. Also if you zoom into the picture of the Satellite you can see a sand beach just to the right on the other side of the cove. This is also another great swimming area (especially for the little ones) as we'll as a good place to dock your boat and have a barbecue along Big Bear Lake.
Without a doubt this is the BEST swimming spot on Big Bear Lake.