Get a good sun block. Remember, a sun block is not a tanning oil or cream. IT IS A BLOCK. It is advised to have at least above 30 SPF. One application is often NOT ENOUGH. As soon as you swim and come out of the pool to rest, you should re-apply it. Don't get fooled by the "water-resistance" of the cream. Yes it is water resistant but not chlorine-water resistant. So after a while, just re-apply.
Swimming has gained popularity amongst the Kathmandu locals. A few years back, there were very few swimming pools –-in the big hotels and two pubic pools at the Dasarath Rangasala and Balaju. Now, they are mushrooming in the three districts of Kathmandu. It's like a must for any upcoming clubs. But trust me, some of the pools are like ponds for goldfish and not humans. So here is my personal guide to the pools in Kathmandu.
In Kathmandu, there are three main pools and many small ones. The best pool for long distance swimmers or lap swimmers who want to keep fit is at the Birendra International Sports Complex in Sat Dobato. The Chinese government helped build this pool for international events, but it is open to the public. It has two pools; one is Olympic-sized with a 50 meter length with a depth that is 6 feet to 6 feet so the pool can be only be used those who know how to swim (or least float). The smaller pool for learners is only 25 meters in length and 3 feet deep. There are also the pools in Dasarath, Rangasala and Balaju. These are also bigger, but the depth is from 3 to 12 feet. The Balau one is pleasantly situated near the hill with plenty of surrounding trees. The environment is more "natural". These public pools tend to be safer because there are usually four life guards on duty.
Hotels tend to have pools, but most of them are like ponds, kiddie pools, or dipping pools. If you just hang out for the atmosphere, go to the big hotels. You can always boast, "Oh, I went to the so and so hotel pool to relax today". Some clubs have also built pools for their members, which often includes a scheme.
Two thumbs up go to Shree Panch Mahendra Police Club. The pool is clean and not overly chlorinated. When I mean clean, I mean clean. The water is always clear and you can swim without wearing goggles. (Most pools have too much chlorine, make your eyes burn, and turn them red in minutes.) This pool is 25 meters, which is the perfect size. Good for beginners as well as those who do laps or distance swimming. The location and the "set up" of the pool are great. It is in the center of Kathmandu, making it easy to get to.
The staff members are very friendly and I mean genuinely friendly. I personally like it because you can order food or drinks from the restaurant in the club after a swim. (The chicken sandwiches and the veggie sandwiches are equally good). It also has the best entry price (very modest compared to other pools). You can check it out for yourself.
Just keep a few things in mind before heading out to the pool.
Especially in Kathmandu, RESPECT the pool and area as your own. I have seen people get into the pool without taking showers, swimming in their underwear instead of proper swim suits. Have some dignity and self-respect; buy a swim suit. The simple (but good-looking) suits cost around NRs. 200 only. For those with long hair, it is better to tie your hair and put on swim caps. Makes you look puuurty! Swim caps help protect your hair from direct contact with the chlorine water and help other swimmers from getting long hairs in their mouths, noses, and...you can see where you are going if your hair is taken care of; otherwise its going to cover your face which may lead to a head-on collision with others.