The Best Summer Cocktails by the Pool

Fleeing the Australian winter to laze around on a warm tropical island? Here’s Melissa’s guide to the perfect summer cocktail by the pool.

After just having returned from a week spent lazing by the pool in Fiji, I’d say that I am now somewhat of an expert on what to drink while you are relaxing in the sun! (Having fled Melbourne in the middle of winter to do exactly the same thing three years in a row helps too.)

Cocktails by the Pool

When it’s 30 degrees with high humidity, a crisp glass of white wine or a rose is a nice option, but somehow wine doesn’t really have the right feel when you’re on a tropical holiday. Something more locally sourced, with fruit juices or coconut, is much more appropriate. Something exotic that you wouldn’t usually drink at home. Something to make you truly feel like you’re on holidays. Cocktails abound in island resorts, and there’s nothing like a wedge of pineapple on the rim of your glass and a twisty straw to make you feel like it’s too hard to do anything but swim and catch up on the latest magazines. On this latest holiday I sampled as many cocktails from the extensive menu as I could (for research purposes only of course) and have come up with a list of my favourites to drink when lazing by the pool. Perfect if you’re planning a trip somewhere warm or just to help you escape the cold and wet winter in your dreams.

The Best Summer Cocktails by the Pool


Even though this probably isn’t technically a cocktail, it’s still a nice, light, wine based drink when you want something slightly fruity but not too alcoholic. Perfect for the first main drink of the day at, oh, around 9:30am…after your Champagne breakfast of course.


A firm favourite everywhere. Mint, lemon and white rum with lots of ice for a refreshing drink. Many bars and resorts are offering a few twists on the regular mojito too. Examples include lychee, tequila and bitter orange, a frozen mojito blended with ice and even a mojito with lemon squash instead of soda for some extra sweetness.


A great tropical cocktail that you’ll probably find on every cocktail list. Mango versions are my favourite, but some would argue that it’s hard to beat the original Strawberry. Other fruity options on offer may include pineapple, banana, papaya or watermelon.

Blu Hawaiian

A gorgeous blue drink of white rum, blue curacao, pineapple and lemon juice was lovely and light with fruity sweetness. Perfect to replace those electrolytes you’ve lost swimming up to the bar!

Chongmai Gin and Tonic

A variation on a classic and a beautifully refreshing way to enjoy one of my favourites. Gin and tonic with a touch of mint, lemon and rosewater. Slightly exotic, but very delicate and oh so moreish.

Pina Colada

A much loved drink in the cocktail stakes, this coconut, pineapple and white rum blend is just what you need to perk you up when it’s starting to get hot. Even if you aren’t on a tropical island, close your eyes and a Pina Colada will take you there!


Another classic cocktail with refreshing tequila, lime and citrus with a salty finish. Add lots of ice and blend for an adults only slushie!

Asian Iced Tea

A twist on Long Island Iced Tea, this one added a tropical twist with Midori and fresh lychees. Not as alcoholic as the Long Island version and served long with lots of ice, it’s the perfect afternoon pick-me-up. Although have one too many and a snooze might be in order!

As much as cocktails do scream summer holidays and tropical islands, you can still drink them in winter too. Just crank up the heater, put some flowers in your hair and be whisked away to an island paradise!

What are your recommendations for the best summer cocktails to sip by the pool? 

You can follow Melissa Ross on Twitter at @EatQuaffLaugh or on her Facebook page.

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