7 Incredible Hot Springs You Have to Visit
If you follow me on Instagram, you know that any time I am anywhere near volcanic activity, I am going to look for a hot spring. I am also a hot tub/bubble bath type of person, but it’s ok if you don’t like those, because you’d probably still love hot springs.
- Yellowstone’s Boiling River, WY (pictured above)
Collin and I agree that this is our favorite. Boiling-hot water runs underground from Yellowstone National Park’s Mammoth Hot Springs and into the Gardner river near Yellowstone’s north entrance just across the border from Montana. Right where the hot water and cold water meets, it is incredible. You have to wade into the shallow river where it is ice cold, and it slowly gets hotter as you get closer to the spring.
Try to get there first thing in the morning, when the air is still chilly and cold and there are not too many people there yet. The river definitely gets busy as the day goes on. Free admission, although you do have to pay admission to get into Yellowstone.
We visited this hot spring in 2016 when we were visiting Yellowstone, and then we made a detour on our way home from Glacier last week just so we could spend a morning in this hot spring again.
- Potosi Hot Spring, Beaverhead National Forest, MT
This is the most rustic, secluded hot spring I have been to. It is nestled just below some mountains in the Beaverhead National Forest. You have to park and hike about a mile to the hot spring, and we had some difficulty finding the trailhead before hiking. There’s not cell phone service in the National Forest, so make sure that you download your google map of the national forest and screen shot this paragraph. We ended up driving around the campground and eventually finding the campground host, who told us how to get there.
Directions: When you turn into the south loop campground, you’ll drive straight ahead over a creek on a bridge and towards another creek (about 50 yards) and park. There is a little log bridge over the “second” creek, continue walking to the left and you’ll find the trailhead. From there the hot spring is just a mile down the path. Make sure to bring your bear spray, because there are a lot of bears in that area. We didn’t see any bears, but we did see a moose!
This hot spring is free since it’s in a National Forest and on public land. While we were there, we were the only ones around (it was a Tuesday morning). It would also be the perfect place and time to skinny dip, just saying.
- Chena Hot Spring, Fairbanks, AK
This hot spring is man-made, but it still has natural features and surrounded by rocks. It’s right in the woods and mountains, and not very busy. The hot spring is adults only and super relaxing. There is an indoor swimming pool for kids in a separate part of the place. There is a whole “resort” around the hot springs that has a restaurant, cabins, and a lodge to stay in. There is an ice museum and different activities to do there in the summer and winter. The ice museum serves drinks in glasses made of ice. If I had gone in the wintertime, I would’ve done a dog sled tour. This hot spring is an hour north of Fairbanks, just at the end of Chena Hot Springs road.
- Blue Lagoon, Iceland
Classic, gorgeous hot spring. This was the first one that I had ever been to. It’s gorgeous, perfect, temperature, swim-up bar, and they have a mask bar where they give you silica to put all over your face and skin. The spring was around $40/person when we traveled there a few years ago. My in-laws visited summer 2018 and it was nearly double that.
- Jackson, WY Hot Spring
This one was a bit more difficult to find as well. It’s a gorgeous drive right outside of Teton National Park. It’s still open in the wintertime, but I had read a few different articles about how the road is not taken care of in the wintertime, and most people cross county ski or take snow-mobiles to get there when there is snow on the ground.
- Norris Hot Spring, MT
This hot spring is less rustic and more like a pool. It is a great temperature and was super easy to find—right off the highway with plenty of parking. I was really excited about this one because they have a restaurant and bar right by the pool, and they have live music there on the weekends. The food and drinks were great and decently priced! We were there on a Monday night when there wasn’t music playing, which was disappointing, but the pool was still crowded. We were surprised how many people were there on a Monday night, so I am sure they are even busier on the weekends. We even camped at the hot spring, about a hundred yards from the pool. Admission to the pool- $8/adults; Camping- $20/night (admission to the pool is only $3/per person when camping)
- Thermopolis, WY
This one is run by the city of Thermopolis. It is free to go to, but you only are allowed to soak for twenty minutes. There is an indoor and outdoor pool, and it is all very clean and well taken care of. They pump the mineral water into a man-made pool. We swam outdoors, but the inside pool looked really nice too. There is also a mineral hot spring waterpark right next door, but we did not go to it. Thermopolis also has their own version of Mammoth Hot Springs that you can walk around.