18 Best Hot Springs in the USA
The United States has some pretty remarkable natural landmarks. From raging rivers and gushing waterfalls to plunging canyons and soaring mountains, the USA does not skimp on natural beauty. Among the many gorgeous places to visit in the United States, hot springs often bubble under the radar. The best hot springs in the USA have often been around for centuries and have been drawing curious visitors to experience their thermal healing powers.
Whether or not these hot springs have any medicinal properties is up for you to decide. But the natural mineral waters across the country have been historically used by Native Americans, who believed their rich mineral content and naturally hot temperatures were beneficial to cleansing the body and spirit. Today many of the best hot springs in the USA have incorporated wellness facilities to dial up the health benefits.
Other hot springs have been kept completely natural, surrounded by nothing but the undeveloped, wild environment. These may take a little extra legwork to access, but the adventuresome who make the trek are handsomely rewarded with these geothermal jewels. Some hot springs may only be accessible seasonally, so be sure to check before you go.
From California to the Deep South, the U.S. is peppered with hot springs. Read our list to find out which are the best hot springs in the USA.
1. Hot Springs State Park, WY
With a name like Hot Springs State Park, it's no wonder this Wyoming watering hole is one of the best hot springs in the USA. Located in the appropriately named town of Thermopolis, the state park has a public bathhouse where visitors can soak in the warm, healing waters for free.
The hot springs here are around 104 degrees and stem from the Big Spring, which is the headwaters for the pools within the town. Aside from the hot springs, Thermopolis also has a beautiful rock formation called the TeePee Fountain, from which flows streams of mineral water.
Address: 220 Park Street, Thermopolis, Wyoming
Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Wyoming
2. Chena Hot Springs Resort, AK
About 60 miles from Fairbanks, Alaska sits the bubbling, steamy Chena Hot Springs – the perfect antidote to the whipping winds of eastern Alaska. The location of the hot springs is rather remote, but worth it for a soak in the warm, mineral-rich waters.
The hot springs were discovered in 1905 and were used to help cure the aches and pains for the physically disabled. Today, the hot springs are open to everyone. The waters are said to help against psoriasis, muscle pains, and arthritis.
Plan your soak for the evening hours because you may have the opportunity to catch a glimpse of the spectacular northern lights.
Address: Mile 56.5 Chena Hot Springs Road, Fairbanks, Alaska
Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Alaska
3. Glenwood Hot Springs, CO
Colorado has many wonderful things to do, and visiting hot springs is one of them. One of the best spots in the state for soaking is the town of Glenwood Springs. This is the top hot spring destination in Garfield County, with many that are free for the public to enjoy.
The largest hot spring in Glenwood Springs is Glenwood Hot Springs, which stays at a constant 93 degrees Fahrenheit year-round. They also have an additional therapy pool that cranks things up to 104. The resort has a beautiful spa, as well, in case you want to turn your hot spring day into a full-on wellness experience.
Nearby is Iron Mountain, which has 16 different mineral pools that range between 99 and 108 degrees. Another spot for hot springing is Penny Hot Springs, surrounded on all sides by towering granite cliffs.
If you're a skier, you can spend the day on the slopes of nearby Sunlight Mountain, one of the best cheap ski resorts in Colorado, and then take a relaxing soak in the evening.
Address: 401 N River Street, Glenwood Springs, Colorado
4. Allegheny Springs, VA
Tucked in the nooks and crannies of the Allegheny Mountains in Virginia are more than 100 hot springs that bubble and steam around 100 degrees. The hot springs have been used since at least the 17th century, first by Native Americans, and then by colonists, including Thomas Jefferson for whom one of the hot springs is named.
At The Omni Homestead Resort are two hot springs that are open to guests only. The resort's two-acre water park features two 100-foot waterslides, a 400-foot lazy river, a sandy beach, and a whirlpool.
Address: 7696 Sam Snead Hwy, Hot Springs, Virginia
5. Burgdorf Hot Springs, ID
You'll have your pick of the best hot springs in Idaho, but Burgdorf Hot Springs should be at the top of the list. This Idaho institution has two different hot pools that rise up to a steamy 113 degrees. A third pool has been built for kids, as well.
You can even stay at the hot springs in one of their camping cabins, tucked in the Payette National Forest. Just be aware that this is more of a rustic-style stay, and you'll have to bring your own bedding.
Address: 404 French Creek, McCall, Idaho
6. Yellowstone National Park, WY, MT, ID
Yellowstone National Park is world-renowned for its bubbling thermal basins and gushing geysers. You can spend weeks looking at them because they really do stretch as far as the eye can see. That said, the hot springs within the park are not safe for humans to enjoy, so you'll have to head just outside the park to take a dip for yourself.
For the only place to experience the geothermal waters near Yellowstone National Park, head to the Boiling River, just a short drive from the park. This naturally toasty river has a special swimming and soaking area, where you can easily slip into the warm waters for a nice, cozy steep.
Check before going to see if Boiling River is open. Closures may occur due to changing conditions.
7. Fifth Water Hot Springs, UT
Located along Utah's Fifth Water Creek is the famous (and free) Fifth Water Hot Springs. To get to the hot springs and waterfalls here requires a little bit of legwork, but not so much to be off-putting.
A quick hike along the Three Forks Trailhead or the Rays Valley Trailhead leads travelers to these warm, thermal baths that vary in temperature. You'll also find three waterfalls, which add to the ambience dramatically.
The water here is stunningly turquoise, and while the waters do have that sulfur smell, it hardly takes away from the storybook setting.
Address: Diamond Fork Road, Springville, Utah
8. Trail Creek Hot Springs, ID
What's great about Trail Creek Hot Springs is that even though they are among Idaho's most popular, the sheer volume of pools often means you'll have plenty of room for yourself. Surrounded by spectacular forests and cliffs, the warm pools are a perfect place to relax after a day adventuring in the wilderness.
The pools are located within the Boise National Forest and feature PVC piping that brings in cold water to help you get the temperature just right. The spring itself bubbles at 116 degrees. To find the springs, start in the city of Cascade and cross over the Payette River bridge to follow an unpolished road for approximately 20 miles.
9. Calistoga, CA
Napa Valley is famous for many reasons, but hot springs is certainly one of them. The town of Calistoga, California, for example, is quite literally bubbling with them. These are among the best hot springs in California. Many Calistoga resorts are built around the hot springs, which is always an excellent value-add for travelers passing through the world-famous valley.
The first hot springs hotel opened here in 1862, drawing the San Francisco elite for day trips to escape the city in search of health and wellness. You'll also find mud baths in the city, which offer a mineral-rich mud that is supposed to be excellent for the skin.
10. Hot Springs National Park, AR
Quite literally a national park devoted to hot springs, it is no wonder this destination made it onto our list. Set in the appropriately named Hot Springs, Arkansas, this bounty of bubbly water is a sight to behold.
That said, the hot springs in the park are not fit for taking a dip, so you'll have to venture into town to find what you seek. The hot springs located in town have been used for centuries, first by Native Americans, and then by European settlers as healing spots for wellness.
11. Mono Hot Springs, CA
California's spectacularly rugged Sierra Nevada mountains have many hot spring secrets, and Mono Hot Springs Resort is one of them. Not far from Fresno (roughly 70 miles), this hot spring heaven has 12 hot springs that froth and churn along the San Joaquin River. The hottest of the springs here is Old Pedro, which gets as hot as 107 degrees Fahrenheit. Others are cooler if you want to linger for longer.
The resort has rustic, charming cabins for those who want to spend a few days here. Many cabins feature fireplaces, living rooms, and a dining room table. Kitchens are equipped with a stove and refrigerator. Other cabins have outdoor fire pits and grills. The use of the hot springs is included in the rate of all the cabins available here.
Address: Edison Lake Road, California
12. Dunton Hot Springs, CO
Once a thriving mining town, Dunton Hot Springs became one of Colorado's many historic ghost towns once the mines dried up. The town underwent a second renaissance, however, when it turned into an upscale hot springs resort.
Today Dunton Hot Springs, located in Dolores, Colorado, offers a stunning Colorado Rockies setting, not far from Telluride. The exclusive resort is truly built out of the bones of the old ghost town. The romantic mining town is equipped with all the tech touches, like Wi-Fi and television, all set to a backdrop of gurgling hot springs along the Dolores River.
13. Radium Hot Springs, CO
Another one of Colorado's many glorious hot springs tops the list. Radium Hot Springs, just southwest of Kremlin, Colorado, is a local favorite. Not only is it free to enter, but the expansive hot spring has managed to dodge development, leaving a perfectly natural setting in which to enjoy the steamy, mineral pools.
The hot springs are located on the banks of the Colorado River. To access the pools requires a short hike, although a steep one, that runs for just a little more than half a mile. Temperatures can range anywhere from 85 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit.
14. Goldmyer Hot Springs, WA
Not far from Washington's famous Snoqualmie Pass, tucked in the forests of the Cascade Mountains, Goldmyer Hot Springs gurgles happily away as one of the best hot springs in Washington. These geothermal gems are among the best in the state, thanks to a. 4.5-mile hike into the wilderness to reach them.
For those who do manage to make the trek, the hot springs do not disappoint. The pine tree setting really sells the tranquility of the destination, as does the 20-person-per-day limit. You can even camp nearby if you want to make the hot springs a multi-day experience. Just remember you'll have to bring in everything that you need, as camping here is as basic as it gets.
15. Umpqua Hot Springs, OR
Oregon's Umpqua National Forest has many beautiful secrets, but the Umpqua Hot Springs are certainly among the best. These natural watering holes, among the best hot springs in Oregon, feature three soaking pools that spill into each other, each one getting slightly warmer than the last.
To reach the springs, bathers have to navigate a steep (but short) trail from the parking area, and a NW Forest Pass is required to use the parking area. The site is clothing-optional, and you can expect to see other visitors around, especially if it is a weekend.
Umpqua Hot Springs are not far from Crater Lake National Park, too, if you want to add another beautiful bucket list destination to hit while you're in town.
16. Kirkham Hot Springs, ID
Running along the South Fork of the Payette River, visitors will find a staircase that leads down to a collection of undeveloped, natural hot springs. You can see the Kirkham Hot Springs from Highway 21, dubbed the Ponderosa Pine Scenic Byway.
These hot springs are among the top in the state thanks to the number of pools, as well as the easy accessibility from the highway and a nearby campground. In fact, the Kirkham Campground has become one of the best places to camp near Boise. Make reservations far in advance, as spots fill up rather quickly. If you're just visiting the hot springs for the day, the best bet is to go as early as possible to beat the crowds.
17. Quinn's Hot Spring Resort, MT
If you're hunting for hot springs in Montana, the Quinn's Hot Springs Resort ought to be at the top of the list. This gorgeous natural spot is located, quite literally, in Paradise. Paradise, Montana, that is.
The resort has five natural hot spring pools that range in temperature from 100 degrees to 106 degrees. You can even create your own polar bear plunge with a quick dip in their 55-degree pool. Additional pools include ones that are kept at a steady temperature just under 100 degrees, too, if you're bringing the entire family.
The pools are open to the public, but guests who stay at the lodge have added perks, like preferred times to use the hot springs and no time limits on how long they can stay soaking. Otherwise the lodge offers two swimming sessions – one in the morning and one in the afternoon.
Address: 195 Quinn's Canyon Road, Route 135, Plains, Montana
18. Truth or Consequences, NM
With such a foreboding name comes considerable curiosity abut these natural hot springs, located in New Mexico. The town was actually put on the map because of its hot springs, with the first public bathhouse opening in the 19th century. In fact, the town was originally called Hot Springs until it changed its name in 1950.
Today Truth or Consequences has 10 bathhouses scattered throughout the historic district, and these continue to be the biggest tourism draws to the town today. You can start your hot springs hop at Riverbend Hot Springs, which has a beautiful view over the Rio Grande.
Visitors are invited to rent a private pool for a 50-minute session, or you purchase a one-hour property pass that gives access to the Common Hot Springs Pools. Guests who stay at the hotel have free and unlimited access to the common pools.