Outdoor Swimmer Henley Swim Festival

Why book with us?

  • Official booking partner
  • Best price guarantee
  • Free cancellation protection

Secure your place


Tickets £26–£81

Book Now
  • Official booking partner
  • Best price guarantee
  • Free cancellation protection

Review summary

1 Review
  • Course
  • Organisation
  • Atmosphere


"It was a great day, an amazing setting, a fantstic course. my only criticism..."
See all reviews

Distances in this event

  1. 1mi

    Swim 1mi
    View Tickets
  2. 0.5mi

    Swim 0.5mi
    View Tickets
  3. 0.2km

    Swim 0.2km
    Book Now
  4. Suits vs Skins - 2 Miles

    Swim 2mi
    View Tickets
  5. 4 Mile Challenge

    Swim 4mi
    Book Now

Outdoor Swimmer Henley Swim Festival routes


The Henley Mile is a straight line downstream River Thames swimming event, held over the Henley Royal Regatta boomed course.

The distance options are:

200m (age 8-12)

Zoggs Half-mile (age 9+)

Mile (age 14+)

You can swim the mile twice – once in a wetsuit and once without – in Suits vs Skins (any two non-consecutive waves).

You can swim the mile four times throughout the day (waves 1,3,4 & 6) in the 4 Mile Challenge.

All courses are downstream and finish at the event area.



In a bid to once and for all determine the performance boost given by wetsuits, competitors will have the opportunity to take part in the “Suits v Skins Challenge“.

Anyone who wants to take part in this challenge will need to swim the Mile twice: once with a wetsuit and once without.

The winner will be the person with the fastest cumulative time for the two miles – but everyone taking part will see what difference swimming in a wetsuit really makes.

The remaining wave combinations are as follows:

10:15am & 13:45pm Women Only

10:15am & 14:30pm Women Only

As wave 2 (10:15am) is a women only wave, there is now no availability for men to swim suits vs skins


The water temperature at the Henley Swim Festival will depend upon both the outside temperature and the quantity of rainfall in the days and weeks running up to the event. It is therefore very difficult to predict.

Based on previous years, in mid-July, expect the water to be between 17 and 20 degrees centigrade.

Event details

  • Finisher’s medal
  • 700 participants

From the organizer

Henley Swim

Verified organizer

View eventsView website
Henley Swim

The Outdoor Swimmer Henley Swim Festival takes place at the stunning location of Temple Island Meadows just outside Henley-on-Thames.

The event includes multiple-distances, free taster sessions, and the chance to swim with elite level competitors. Whether you are coming for a serious timed swim, or simply want to dip your toes in with a supervised session, there is nothing quite as exhilarating as swimming in open water, a sport that continues to grow around the world and which offers both physical and mental benefits.

This family friendly event has options for everyone aged from 8 years old and above whether new to open water swimming or an experienced swimmer seeking a personal best. All events are downstream.

This family event, which is held throughout the day, features a number of distance options for all ages and abilities including mile, half mile and 200m.

Other events from this organizer

What’s Included
  • All finishers receive a completion time
  • Goody bag
  • Medal
  • Prizes Swim
  • Access to the entire Outdoor Swimmer Henley Swim Festival for you and your spectators
  • Experience live music
  • Food and drink
  • Exhibitors
  • Equipment testing
  • Endless pool
  • Whole day of fun by the river.
Raceday Logistics


All Mile waves are age 14+

09:30am - Mile Wave 1

10:15am - Mile Wave 2 – Women Only

11:00am - Mile Wave 3

12:00pm - Henley Splash (200m age 8-12)

12:20pm - Zoggs Half-mile (age 9+)

13:00pm - Mile Wave 4

13:45pm - Mile Wave 5

14:00pm - The Big Jump

14:30pm - Mile Wave 6

4x Mile Challenge (waves 1,3,4 & 6)

Suits vs Skins (any 2 non-consecutive mile waves)

Adults can accompany children in the Henley Splash free of charge.


You and your supporters can enjoy the atmospheric festival ‘village’ for post swimming celebrations, information and advice, and spectator entertainment including craft, yoga, live music and more.

Set on the most beautiful and prestigious stretch of the Thames, the event takes place just one week after the Henley Royal Regatta.

We couldn’t’ resist opening a campsite for those who would like to make it a weekend and enjoy the unique spot by the riverside. You would be hard pressed to find a better view for your pre-swim morning coffee!

All Mile swimmers should be confident of being able to swim at least 2.5k non-stop to take part in this event and Half Mile swimmers should be able to swim 1km non-stop. All Henley Splash swimmers should have completed basic swimming lessons and be comfortable treading water in the deep end of a swimming pool. Ideally they should be able to swim 20 lengths without stopping.
Kit List

Wetsuit Hire

The event is partnered with 2XU for event day only, monthly OR seasonal hire. You can hire your wetsuit through the 2XU website. If you are hiring for the event day only, make sure you click Henley Swim Festival. You will be able to collect and return your wetsuit at the event. If you like your suit, you will have the option to buy it at the end of the hire period.


You can bring friends and family to support you, and there is plenty for them to do on the land. There is no charge for spectators, and you are able to pre-book additional car parking if required. Spectators can walk alongside the river, cheering you on, for the entire course.


If you would like to volunteer to be part of one of these events, please email [email protected] to find out more about what is involved. If you volunteer at one event (minimum 5 hours), you will receive a FREE entry into one of the other events (for a Thames Marathon entry, you qualify after volunteering at two events.)

Frequently Asked Questions

Will there be prizes at the Henley Swim Festival?
There will be prize giving for the junior Zoggs Half-mile and Splash events. These will be broken down by sex and age group, and will be presented at the event soon after the results are available. As there are waves throughout the day, the results of the Mile and Suits vs Skins for both adults and juniors will not be known until the last wave is complete. Swimmers will be able to check their times after their swim, and a complete list of results, including age group positions, will be available online at the end of the day. The junior Mile and Suits vs Skins prizes will be sent after the event. There will not be prizes for the adult categories.
Can I swim any categories with my children?
Yes, you can swim with your children in all events. The Mile – if your child is 14 or over you can swim the Mile together, please make sure you select the same wave during the registration process. The Zoggs Half-mile – if your child is 9 or over you can swim the Half-mile together. The Splash – if your child is aged 8-12, one adult can accompany the child free of charge. Register your child for the Splash, tick the accompanying adult box, and add your details where requested. If you are swimming with more than one child, only add your details on the registration of the first child. Children are allowed to swim alone, and do not need to have an accompanying adult.
Are children allowed to swim without an adult?
If your child is aged 12 or under, you will need to make sure that they have either an accompanying adult swimming with them, or walking the tow-path alongside them. When you register your child for the event, you will be asked to confirm that you have understood this. Children aged 13+ do not require this, however we very much hope that you will be supporting your child throughout their swim. You can walk alongside all the way. We also ask you to be sure that your child has the capability to swim in the event that you enter them in.
What is the Henley Swimmers Forum?
We have set up a Facebook Forum called Henley Swim Chatter, where you are able to discuss anything with fellow swimmers from nutrition and training tips to event transport. https://www.facebook.com/groups/henleyswimchatter
Is there any event memorabilia at the Henley Swim Festival?
There will be event memorabilia available to purchase both in advance and at the event. Visit our online shop to see our full range of t-shirts and hoodies for adults and children. https://www.scimitarevents.com/product-category/henley-swim/henley-swim-festival/
Do you have to wear a wetsuit for the Henley Swim Festival?
Wetsuits are optional for this event!
Is there any swimming training for the Henley Swim Festival?
Follow this link for preparation tips - https://henleyswim.com/training/
Have a question? Get answers from our team.

Outdoor Swimmer Henley Swim Festival weather forecast

Drizzle throughout the day.

Predicted highs
Predicted lows
IconHigh chance of rain
IconLight breeze possible, up to 7mph

Outdoor Swimmer Henley Swim Festival reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

  • Course
  • Organisation
  • Atmosphere
  • R


    Did the 0.5mi in 2019

    It was a great day, an amazing setting, a fantstic course. my only criticism would be the queues for food and drink.