Top 5 Hot Springs In Virginia: Take A Detour From The Usual And Try A Cooler Soak – Literally

Ever since the mid-18th century, travelers and locals alike have been frequenting the hot springs of Virginia with one sole goal: to bask in the abundance of medicinal properties of those thermal pools. As a common method for healing and recovery, especially in the old and golden days when staying healthy depended on liquids and herbs, it comes as no surprise to anyone that the thermal springs were taken advantage of this much. 

Virginia is practically a mine of geothermal activity, offering its dwellers or visitors all sorts of benefits that fulfill their requirements. However, unlike the hot springs that we usually encounter, the ones you’ll find in Virginia are lukewarm (bordering on cold), yet rich with minerals nonetheless. Nowadays, the hot springs are used not only for health purposes but also for maintaining one’s spiritual energy and peace of mind.

Now let’s break down some of the best hot springs in Virginia and see what all the fuss is about.

1. The Omni Homestead Resort

Omni Homestead is a luxury resort home to the historic ‘Warm Pools’ in Hot Springs, VA that guarantees you top-tier relaxation.

What To Expect

You should expect every inch the luxury resort as its name makes it sound. With countless amenities to accommodate a comfortable stay and possessing the greatest bonus of warm thermal soaking options, you are in for an extremely memorable experience. 

Warm Pools at Omni consists of two enormous round pools – both indoor – wide enough for more than a dozen guests. The two buildings are located within walking distance of each other and are tucked into typical Virginia scenery. 

The water of the springs flows at a natural body temperature, which is a great reprieve from the typical hell hot soaks in most hot springs.

Don’t Miss

As a luxury hotel, there’s a vast selection of activities that you can take advantage of. You can check out their water park, golf courses, endless spa services, taste their wine, etc. 

Obviously there are numerous accommodation options that you can choose from. 

Also note that the venue can be rented for weddings.

Good To Know

The warm pools are actually located 5 miles from the resort and divided into Gentlemen’s and Ladies’ Bathhouses.

Advanced reservations are required. You can contact the resort at 540-839-3860. 

Nude soaking is allowed only during certain hours. 

A 50-minute soak is $30.You can find detailed info here.

The interior of the Lady’s Bathhouse at Omni Homestead. Source:

2. Alum Springs

Alum Springs is a very popular dweller of Alum Springs Park (Fredericksburg, VA) perfect for group getaways.

What To Expect

You should expect a naturally made, almost knee-deep spring pool of greenish hues with a comfortable temperature of 72°F. Granted, this is not a typical hot springs temperature and truthfully, Alum Springs isn’t even a hot spring, but as one of Virginia’s signature springs, it just wouldn’t be fair not to include it on this list.

It offers all the opportunities that a typical thermal pool would, such as camp and picnic sites, parks to hike and explore, and simply a chance to have fun with your friends and family. 

Seeing as Alum is situated at the heart of the park with the same name, you’d be correct to assume that once you visit, you’ll be enveloped by forest scenery from all sides.

Don’t Miss

Make sure to bike and hike along Rappahannock River and other trails around the area. 

Alum hot springs also presents a great opportunity for wildlife and birdwatching. 

Also, don’t forget to check out Annie’s Swimming Hole with a 20-foot sinkhole and a cascading rock waterfall.

Good To Know

As a family-friendly destination, clothing is required. You don’t want to traumatize children, do you?!

The spring is known to be covered in some algae, so wear proper shoes.

Alum Spring captured by on IG.

3. Bolar Springs (Private Property)

Bolar Hot Springs is one of the biggest attractions of Bolar Mountain Recreation Area located in Warm Springs, VA but as of this year, it is no longer accessible to the public.

What To Expect

If you’re a local or just a hot springs enthusiast then you’re most probably no stranger to the thermal gem known as Bolar Springs which is privately owned by the Webb family in Warm Springs, VA. Bolar Springs is a massive man-made concrete pool housing thermal waters of 73°F. It’s been known to possess a lot of medicinal properties and cure numerous illnesses. 

Unfortunately, contrary to popular belief Bolar Hot Spring is no longer open to the public due to the influx of visitors but it’s still considered to be one of the most cherished and loved places in Warm Springs by the local community.

Don’t Miss

So with that said, if you ever end up in the area, stick to exploring other wonders of Bolar Mountain Recreation Area.

Bolar Hot Springs. Source: bakertroop

4. Falling Spring

Imagine a tall and grand waterfall cascading over a big cliff and straight into a mighty rocky pool in the highlands of Virginia. Well, that’s a sight one wouldn’t forget anytime soon.

What To Expect

Located in Alleghany Highlands in Covington, VA, this mighty 80-foot waterfall really is a sight for sore eyes and the ultimate key for rediscovering peace of mind. Surrounded by rugged mountain and forest scenery, forest spring guarantees all its visitors an unforgettable experience. 

You will find a comfortable temperature of 77°F in a dirt-bottomed pool filled up by the falling water.

Don’t Miss

The destination offers you a lot of opportunities to explore the natural wonders in the area with some of the most picturesque spots – such as Humpback Bridge – that will do wonders for your instagram feed, just sayin.’ 

It’s also a great place for kayaking and biking.

Good To Know

The big algae-covered rocks that you’ll find at the base of the waterfall are sharp, so be equipped with the proper footwear.

Screen cap of Falling Spring from the YT video here.

5. Shenandoah Hot Springs

Located in Luray, VA Shenandoah Hot Springs has served as family-favorite getaway for a long time.

What To Expect

You should expect indoor and outdoor tubs with a temperature of 72°F in a commercialized resort. The tubs are 3 feet deep. 

When the weather is right, these springs can go from a relaxing soak to a full-on waterpark real fast, so with that said, be prepared for a lot of enthusiastic children having fun in their usual manner.

Don’t Miss

As a commercialized resort, there’s a lot of amenities and activities that you can take advantage of such as golf courses, snow sports, street curling, escape rooms and VR, live events and a big selection of activities to keep you busy. 

Good To Know

The outdoor pool is only open when the weather outside reaches 70°F and above. 

There’s a lifeguard on duty.

The facility doesn’t encourage visitors to soak for more than 15 minutes seeing as it can raise some health complications.

Shenandoah Hot Springs. Source:

The Do’s And Don’ts

Every hot spring has its own quirks. They all have a set of rules that visitors need to follow regardless of what kind of spring you’re visiting. Visitors need to be extra conscious of their time in free and natural hot springs destinations seeing as they get no constant maintenance the way commercialized springs do.

 For more general and very important “hot springs etiquette,” we highly recommend you take a moment to check out our carefully compiled easy-to-read list of “dos and don’ts” here. And always, always respect our nature – pack out what you pack in and LEAVE NO TRACE.

Final Thoughts

Despite its unassuming appearance, the best hot springs in Virginia still possess a characteristic charm that always lures guests back. Especially the locals. Trust us, they’d be all too happy to gatekeep these springs if the chance presented itself, considering that the small communities who live nearby are the ones seeing to the spring’s maintenance. 

Even though the selection for the best hot springs in Virginia (more like lukewarm springs) is a little bit of a detour from what we’re usually accustomed to when it comes to thermal soaks, it keeps both first-timers and locals content. Because let’s face it, sometimes it’s more about the health benefits than aesthetics.


While we at Traxplorio do our very best to give you the latest information about these hot springs sites, life happens, weather happens, and property owners happen. We always recommend you go to the official hot springs’ web page and/or the relevant state authority page to check conditions, times, and prices (where relevant) before you head out. Thanks for understanding, and enjoy your soak!

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