If you love spending time outdoors on vacation, there’s nothing quite like soaking in hot springs to relax and rejuvenate amidst stunning landscapes. Here are just a few examples of places you can explore.
Iceland’s Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa located approximately 45 minutes from the capital of Reykjavik, stands as the country’s most popular attraction, welcoming visitors year-round. The water’s milky blue-green color, derived from a high concentration of silica and minerals, creates a unique experience. The lagoon also features a wellness clinic and spa, and from December to February, it becomes an excellent spot for witnessing the dazzling Northern Lights.
On the Caribbean island of St. Lucia, Sulphur Springs boasts mud baths as part of the world’s only drive-in volcano. After a refreshing shower, a stroll through the town of Soufriere reveals architecture reflecting British and French influences. Nearby, the Diamond Falls Botanical Gardens and Mineral Baths offer a scenic view of the Pitons, two volcanic spires that are iconic landmarks of St. Lucia.
Tuscany, Italy, is adorned with hot springs, and among the well-known ones are the thermal baths of Saturnia. Waterfalls have sculpted small pools resembling a staircase, providing a picturesque place to relax surrounded by the beautiful countryside. Saturnia, one of Italy’s oldest towns, offers a chance to explore its history at the archaeological museum showcasing finds unearthed in the area.
Calistoga, a small city in California’s Napa Valley, is renowned for its hot springs, mineral pools, and wineries. After a soothing soak, a drive along the historic Silverado Trail unfolds a 29-mile, two-lane country road shaded by oak trees and adorned with world-class vineyards. Alternatively, you can rent a bike and pedal your way through.
About an hour from Phoenix, Castle Hot Springs, part of SELECT Hotels & Resorts, offers natural clear hot springs and cascading pools. As a client of Travel Leaders travel advisors, you can enjoy special amenities. The resort also features individual accommodations and a dining menu sourced from its onsite farm, along with activities like climbing, horseback riding, and e-mountain biking.
Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas boasts grand bathhouses constructed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. While outdoor soaking isn’t available, you can indulge in two bathhouses — the Buckstaff and Quapaw. The latter offers modern spa services with private baths, massages, and facials. Additionally, the park provides miles of hiking, biking, and walking trails.
In western Colorado, thermal hot springs are abundant, and a drive along the state’s 800-mile Historic Hot Springs Loop lets you explore 23 unique facilities. From intimate private baths to the world’s largest mineral hot springs pool, each destination offers a variety of experiences. Along the loop, discover hiking trails, charming small towns, and the breathtaking scenery of the Rocky Mountains.