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Swim Serpentine

Event details


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Children with Cancer UK Swim Serpentine is a one-day open water swimming festival staged in the heart of London. The festival is held in and around the beautiful Serpentine in Hyde Park, the Olympic 2012 open water swim site. Sign up for this must-do event.

Review summary

6 Reviews
  • Course
  • Organisation
  • Atmosphere


Sue P
"Really well organised, buzzing atmosphere! Good selection of after swim snacks..."


dave f
"I loved this event I only starting swimming properly less than 3 yrs ago and..."


Lynda C
"I do this every year and really enjoy it. It is easy to get to, well organised..."
See all reviews

How to enter the Swim Serpentine

  1. Two-Mile

    Swim 2mi
  2. One-Mile

    Swim 1mi
  3. Half-Mile

    Swim 0.5mi

Swim Serpentine routes

Half-Mile Swim

This is a half lap of the Serpentine. Perfect for those after a fast and furious race, as well as those looking for a shorter, more manageable (but still tough!) swim.

One-Mile Swim

The classic distance. This is easily the most popular race of the festival, consisting of one lap around the lake.

Two-Mile Swim

A more challenging swim for those who want one, this is two laps around the lake. Aimed at those with previous One Mile swim experience who want to really test themselves.

Event Details

  • Medal for all finishers
  • Swim Pack with coloured swim cap and more
  • Heated changing rooms
  • Dunk zone
  • Pontoon start and finish
  • Full water safety crew
  • Hot tubs
  • Exhibition area


Exact race-day information will be available in the swim packs which will be sent out prior to the event.

Swimmers will be set off in Race Waves which will be clear from the swim caps in your swim pack.

Swimmers with Disabilities

Para swimmers and swimmers with a disability are more than welcome at Children with Cancer UK Swim Serpentine. There is not a dedicated para swimmers wave so you will be able to choose which wave you enter when you sign up.

If you require help or support on event day, please contact [email protected]

Wetsuits are optional when the water temperature is 15 degrees or over. However, for safety reasons, all swimmers in the event must either wear a full length wetsuit or use a tow-float.

If you wear a tri-suit you are also required to use a tow-float. It is the buoyancy from the neoprene in wetsuits that is important.

Fancy Dress

Fancy dress is allowed but please ensure it does not hinder you or those around you.

There will be a real festival atmosphere in Hyde Park throughout the weekend, so spectators are encourage to come along and watch.

The event area will feature grandstands for even better viewing, while there will be plenty of additional entertainment for the whole family.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you sign up for the Swim Serpentine on the day?
No. Signups are ending on September 5th!
Is the Swim Serpentine family-friendly?
Yes! The minimum age for the half mile swim is 12 years old and the minimum age for the one mile swim is 16.
What so cool about this race?
The one mile swim follows the same course as the London 2012 Marathon Swimming Olympic Event.
Do I have to collect my swim pack on the day for the Swim Serpentine?
Swim packs will be sent in the post to all entrants before the event.
What is in the swim pack for the Swim Serpentine?
Coloured swim hat which matches your wave colour. You must wear this hat as it displays your start wave colour. If you have a favourite swim hat that you usually swim in, you can wear this underneath your Children with Cancer UK Swim Serpentine swim hat – but please take care not to overheat if it is warm on Swim Day.

Meet the organiser

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The team behind the Virgin Money London Marathon also organises a whole host of other great events including Prudential RideLondon, The Vitality London 10,000 & Westminster Mile, Children with Cancer UK Swim Serpentine and our newest event, The Vitality Big Half.

Other events from this organizer


Swim Serpentine reviews (6)

4.8 out of 5 stars

  • Course
  • Organisation
  • Atmosphere
  • Did the Two-Mile in 2019

    I loved this event I only starting swimming properly less than 3 yrs ago and only really started swimming open water in April 2019
    This was my biggest sporting challenge ever and for me my scariest but once at the event my nerves began to ease a little seeing all the other competitors and once in the water it was great. My only small criticism would be that there was no where to fill my water bottle other than that a brilliant event
  • Did the One-Mile in 2019

    I do this every year and really enjoy it. It is easy to get to, well organised and has great changing facilities. Really enjoyed the staggered start this year that avoids the start bun fight. Will do it again next year and encourage others to do it also.
  • Did the Two-Mile in 2019

    Only disappointment for me was on second lap next wave started and I was caught in group of aggressive swimmers, who gave little thought towards the safety of other swimmers.
    To me I accept that everyone swims at a different pace but any slower swimmers I approached, I always tried to ensure that I gave them sufficient space when swimming past them, not over the top of them.
  • Did the Two-Mile in 2019

    Brilliant. Well organised. Great swim. good flow of competitors. Nice touch with the hot tubs. Thoroughly enjoyed it!
  • Did the Two-Mile in 2019

    This was a well organised event, great setting in Hyde Park, weather was beautiful and overall a fun, and Friendly bucket list event.
  • Did the One-Mile in 2019

    Really well organised, buzzing atmosphere! Good selection of after swim snacks and lovely warm changing room :-)
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Ticket information


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