The International Swimming Hall of Fame — Photo courtesy of Dale Mack
Fort Lauderdale has a long, storied history of swimming dating back to the Civitan raft off Las Olas Boulevard and the Casino Pool, which came after in 1928.
The International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) is a pillar in the city's list of notable world-class museums that continues to draw aquatic enthusiasts year after year. Located just steps from the fabulous Fort Lauderdale Beach off the famous A1A, this facility houses the world's largest collection of aquatic memorabilia and the single largest source of aquatic books, manuscripts and literature in its extensive library and archive.
This celebrated Hall of Fame contains over 40 exhibits and displays that illustrate the history of aquatic sports by recognizing those who have significantly contributed to swimming, diving, water polo and synchronized swimming, such as Mark Spitz and actors such as Johnny Weissmuller and Esther Williams, best known for her films and being the Million Dollar Mermaid.
Also honored are U.S. Presidents John F. Kennedy, for being on the first Harvard swim team to beat Yale, and Ronald Reagan, who was captain of his college swim team and is notably credited with saving 77 lives as a lifeguard.
After the tour, participate in the interactive Fort Lauderdale Aquatic Complex, which was formerly the International Swimming Hall of Fame Aquatic Complex. Here are three pools, the largest being a 50-meter pool. Call ahead to see when the facility is open, and for just a few dollars swim where Olympiads have trained. Just remember that the pools are often closed for competitive events.