Swim Good: A Guide to Taiwanese Swimming Etiquette

Summer in Taiwan is hot. And when we say hot, oh boy, do we mean it. So, naturally, you’re going to want to get in the water. Trips to the pool or the beach are an absolute must when temperatures are skyrocketing, but you shouldn’t just dive right in (pardon the pun). There’s certain etiquette as well as safety measures that need to be taken into consideration when you go swimming in Taiwan. We’ve put together a quick guide of what and what not to do when you swim in Taiwan so you don’t find yourself in at the deep end when it comes to the dos and don’ts. (Read more: 10 ways to evade and escape Taiwan’s summer heat)

At the Pool

You need a swimming cap

While in many countries swim caps are optional, in Taiwan it’s simply a case of no cap, no entry. Even if you don’t want to swim and just want to stand in the water, you’ll still need a cap. Many places will also require you to wear a cap in the jacuzzi or sauna/steam rooms. So, it’s probably best to invest in one if you want swimming to become part of your regular routine in Taiwan.

Swimming caps are essential for swimmers in Taiwan (Image Source: Andrea Piacquadio)

Footwear has to be removed before entering the changing rooms

Perhaps not the most hygienic of practices, but you have to take off your shoes before entering locker rooms. This may seem kind of dirty, but one saving grace is that it is also compulsory to shower before entering the pool, so there’s that at least… 

You have to circle swim if you’re there to do laps

Even if there are only two people swimming, you still have to swim in circles, apparently. We don’t know why this the case or how strictly it is enforced. 

At the beach

Don’t swim if the weather is bad

This may seem like a bit of a no-brainer, but some people still need reminding. During stormy weather, in particular in the build up to or during typhoons, it’s in your best interest to stay out of the sea. Currents will be too strong to manage and you are at threat from being dragged away or under by a riptide or large waves. Also, you should also avoid swimming in the ocean after a typhoon due to the debris that will be getting washed up to shore as a result of the storm. (You might also like: Taipei Summer Hotspots: Beat the Heat This Summer with These Five Family-Friendly Outdoor Destinations)

Keep these tips in mind to keep yourself safe (Image Source: Ann Lee)

Don’t walk around barefoot

It’s best to wear something like flip-flops on your feet rather than walking around barefoot on Taiwan’s beaches. Many beaches are covered in stones, while in summer, the hot sand can literally burn the soles of your feet, so it’s best to have some form of footwear to make things more comfortable.

Obey the signage

Some beaches may not have a lifeguard present, so it’s very important to follow the instructions on the signs around the beach. If there is a sign that says “no swimming”, it’s there for a reason. It isn’t a suggestion and it is in your best interest to obey the warnings. 

Don’t ignore the signs! (Image Source: chia ying Yang)

(Cover photo: MTT)

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