Relax and unwind, rejuvenate your mind-body, and soul, all while frolicking in mineral-rich waters in one of these natural thermal pools sprinkled across the United States. From Wilbur Hot Springs in Northern California to the network of bubbling waters at Mammoth Lakes, you’re in for a treat.
Across the US, you can easily find hot springs that fit every travel preference. Whether you’re looking to take a dip in nature after a tiresome hike or prefer a private hot tub room for a spa-like experience.
So, if this sounds delightful to you, let’s read on and take a look at the best natural hot springs the USA has to offer.
Psst…If you have an interest in natural cascades and other breathtaking water sources to dip into, take a look at this list of the most beautiful waterfalls you won’t want to miss.
10 Natural Hot Springs Around the US
Mother Nature spoils us with a clean supply of steamy water that bubbles up and gives us divine temperatures. Now, let’s take a dive into the best natural hot springs around the USA.
Glenwood Hot Springs, Colorado
Nestled between Aspen and Vail in Colorado, Glenwood Hot Springs claims the title as the world’s largest hot springs pool. And the Glenwood Resort got its claim to fame for holding these wold famous hot springs.
The soothing mineral waters of the pools are sourced from the nearby Glenwood springs, but there are also luxury spa treatments and other rejuvenating therapies available at the resort. And with lakes, canyons, and mountains surrounding the area, there are plenty of activities to excite all kinds of travelers.
Picture cutting down the ski slopes in the wintertime before dipping into some revitalizing, warm mineral waters thereafter – sounds delightful, right?
Also in Glenwood, there are sixteen soaking pools and a family pool next to the Colorado River at Iron Mountain Hot Springs. And don’t miss one of the only natural geothermal steam baths in North America at Yampa Spa & Vapor Caves.
For a night at the Glenwood Resort, check prices and availability here.
Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas
The city of Hot Springs, Arkansas, is promptly named “Valley of the Vapors.” And with 47 natural hot springs that rise up through the vents in the streets and causing the town to fall under a geothermal fog, this name is deemed appropriate.
All of the 47 hot springs are located within the Hot Springs National Park. Here you’ll find plenty of activities, from forested hikes and abundant trickling creeks to thermal waters.
Visit Bathhouse Row or Quapaw Baths to soak in the geothermal waters or head to the Display Springs or Hot Water Cascades to see the bubbling pools in their natural setting.
Wilbur Hot Springs, California
Located in Northern California, Wilbur Hot Springs is a naturally occurring hot spring nestled in a health sanctuary, retreat, and nature reserve in Williams. These thermal waters come from the ground near Bear Creek and boast cozy temperatures ranging between 140 to 152 °F.
At Wilber, guests are able to enjoy a solar-powered health retreat with natural healing hot springs centered in the heart of the 1800-acre nature preserve. Enjoy hiking and biking on the many trails before taking a dip in the clothing-optional hot springs to relax after.
Due to the remote location of this hot spring resort, it’s essential to make a reservation.
Sierra Hot Springs, California
Sierra Hot Springs is located around 40 minutes north of Truckee in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. For centuries, Native Americans have regarded this area as a sacred healing place, and today, it’s an 800-acre non-profit retreat and workshop center.
Here, visitors are provided with an array of clothing-optional pools, including a large swimming pool, a hot pool inside a large geodesic dome, and several shallow pools dotted in the Aspen Forest. There are also seasonal hot tub rooms inside private places to relax and unwind.
Hot Springs State Park, Wyoming
Hot Springs State Park in Wyoming is a few hour’s drive away from the popular Yellowstone National Park. It’s nestled along the Big Horn River at Thermopolis, where hot springs flow at a constant temperature of around
The park features plenty of hiking trails and thermal pools surrounded by a beautiful landscape. There’s a free bathhouse with an indoor and outdoor pool fed by the surrounding mineral hot springs – ideal for relaxing and soothing your muscles after a vigorous hike in the park.
Note: Keep a lookout for the bison herds that call the park home.
Wild Willy’s Hot Springs, California
Located south of Mammoth Lakes in Long Valley Caldera, Wild Willy’s Hot Springs boasts natural thermal waters that bubble up in the middle of a beautiful, unpopulated area. Visitors can leave their cars in the designated parking lot and take the elevated, wooden walkway for about 0.2 miles to reach the hot springs.
The geothermal water temperatures range between 95 and 105°F, varying slightly each day. The larger pool is the main draw here; it’s deeper and can hold a handful of people comfortably. The smaller pool is shallower and can hold a maximum of two soakers.
Take a dip in the hot springs and be spoiled with vast views of the grassy plains and the towering mountains as the backdrop.
Valley View Hot Springs, Colorado
Valley View Hot Springs is located around an hour’s drive north of Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado. The clothing-optional retreat welcomes visitors to a series of all-natural soaking ponds hugging an array of wilderness trails.
The temperatures range from 93 to 107°F, depending on the season and which soaking pond you’ve chosen to dip in. The resort also features a hydroelectric-powered sauna, where you can frolic in a water-based therapy bath.
Note: To preserve the delicate ecosystem, visitation is managed through a guest quota, so reservations are required.
Deep Creek Hot Springs, California
Located hugging the northern Mojave Desert in the San Bernardino National Forest, Deep Creek Hot Springs offers soakers three large steamy hot pools. Here the waters vary in temperatures from 96 to 102°F.
There are two entry points to access the hot springs. You can either take the 6-mile hike starting at Arrowhead Lake Road and head east along the Pacific Crest Trail. Alternatively, you can embark on a steeper hike along the Freedom Trail for two miles, starting at Bowen Ranch.
Those that brave the hikes, either way, are rewarded with picturesque scenery of the rugged desert mountains and large natural soaking pools.
Note: Deep Creek Hot Springs is a day-visit area only, so there’s no overnight camping permitted.
Langford Hot Springs, Texas
Langford Hot Springs, also known as Boquillas or Big Bend, is located west of Rio Grande Village in the Big Bend National Park, 85 miles from Texas. It’s a short 0.5-mile round trip hike to get to these thermal springs nestled in the Rio Grande. Once you arrive, you’ll be spoiled with a primitive bathing experience, all while enjoying picturesque views of the surrounding area.
These hot springs are considered fossilized waters that are heated by a geothermal process. The pools reach around 105°F and contain dissolved mineral salts with healing powers – cool right?
Note: The road gets narrow and a little bumpy on the way, so be sure to come in a 4X4 wheel drive, high clearance vehicle.
Yellowstone National Park
It’s illegal to swim and soak in most areas of Yellowstone National Park. That’s because these natural hot springs are so hat that they can scald you.
However, even though you cannot bathe there, the hot springs are still impressive to view. If you’re keen for a swim, there are two permitted areas within Yellowstone National Park:
- The Boiling River Swim Area – be careful as the Gardner River current can be fast.
- The Firehole Swim Area – usually only open from mid Summer. Swimming and wading are prohibited at Midway Geyser Basin and in the Upper Geyser Basin on Firehole River.
A more relaxing option is to visit commercially run hot spring pools in Thermopolis. The following attractions are located within Hot Springs State Park Bath House:
- Star Plunge – attractions include a steam cave, fountain waterfall and water jets.
- TePee Pools and Spa – amenities include a water slide and indoor and outdoor hot tubs.
A Footnote on the Best Natural Hot Springs in the USA
No matter the time of year, natural hot springs pools offer a relaxing, and rejuvenating experience basked in geothermal waters surrounded by, often, scenic settings.
So, there you have it; the best hot springs in the USA. If you’ve been to any of these thermal waters or know of some other natural mineral pools that are absolute jewels to mention, please share; we’d love to know.
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Source: Luxury Columnist