Hot springs have long been valued for their therapeutic qualities. These incredible natural springs have been transformed into countless commercial hotspots around the United States.
But there is nothing quite like soaking in the warm waters of a hot mineral spring beneath a ceiling of stars with nothing else around. Here are the best natural hot water pools across the United States of America that you just have to test out for yourself…
Conundrum Hot Springs, Aspen, Colorado
If you can manage the 8.5 mile hike along the Conundrum Creek Trail, these secluded hot springs in Aspen, Colorado will be the perfect way to reward your tired muscles.
Surrounded by incredible natural scenery 11,200 feet high up in the Canadian Rockies, the tranquil Conundrum Hot Springs is one of the highest in North America.
Take your pick of various heated rock pools scattered throughout the flower-filled mountainous terrain, each offering their own water temperature and view.
Fifth Water Hot Springs, Diamond Fork Canyon, Utah
The extraordinary Fifth Water Hot Springs, also known as Diamond Fork Hot Springs, are a collection of milky blue hot water pools and a cascading waterfall that seems to have appeared out of a fairy tale.
These unusual natural springs are reached by a 2.5 mile trail from the Diamond Fork Springs Trailhead that requires a bit of a clamber and decent hiking shoes.
Each hot pool yields its own water temperature – so make sure you test a few out to find your “Goldilocks” pool before enjoying a good therapeutic soak in the hot water.
Travertine Hot Springs, Bridgeport, California
Tucked away within the beautiful Sierra Nevada mountain range in northern California, you will find the incredible Travertine Hot Springs.
These magical scenic springs abound in bright colours of reds, greens and oranges caused by the natural mineral deposits that occur here and are set against a stark white rock face. As the geothermal pools are easily accessed from Highway 395, you can expect them to be a bit busy especially in the peak tourist season.
Bear in mind that these hot pools are often frequented by nude bathers.
Black Rock Hot Spring, Gerlach, Nevada
Surrounded by the vast open desert and thick marshland, Black Rock Hot Spring is a peaceful geothermal pool found in Gerlach, Nevada.
While these gently steaming natural hot pools may tempt you to jump in at the first opportunity, make sure you get in using the wooden plank at the main end of the pool as the second smaller pool can be blisteringly hot and can result in severe burns.
Fortunately, the main bathing pool leads into the marsh and yields a much more pleasant water temperature for soaking in.
Calistoga Hot Springs, California
Discover the magic of the Calistoga Hot Springs where you can soak in the therapeutic waters and lather yourself in the healing properties of the local mud.
Tourists and locals alike have been frolicking in a warm-water mud bath here since the 1900s – the mud, made from a mix of volcanic ash from Mount St. Helena and the minerals of the hot spring, is believed to be very good for the skin.
Glenwood Hot Springs, Colorado
The Glenwood Hot Springs in Colorado has claimed the title of the largest hot spring pool in the world.
Set against the stunning backdrop of the Rocky Mountains, this hot spring is the perfect way to soak away a snowy winter’s day.
Dare to lower yourself toes first into the 104 degree waters of the therapy pool that has an impressive flow rate of 143 liters of water a second or enjoy the slightly cooler waters of the resort swimming pool which is kept at a steamy temperature of 97 degrees Celsius.
Allegheny Springs, Omni Homestead Resort, Virginia
Allegheny Springs is home to some of the United States of America’s best hot springs fed by the warm mineral waters that trickles down from the Allegheny Mountains.
Relax your tired muscles in the Jefferson Pools, named after Thomas Jefferson who visited the pools all the way back in 1818. In addition to the peaceful hot pools you will find here, the resort also has a water park and beach that is perfect for families.
With spectacular natural scenery and a network of healing mineral springs, the United States of America is the best place for a hot spring holiday! Which of these hot springs would you like to try out first?
Photo Credit:Aaron Hawkins on Flickr