Get Soaking In Virginia’s 5 Free Natural Hot Springs

Hot springs are experiencing something of a revival, though medicine has taken over as the curative-be all for ills such as psoriasis and rheumatism today. In the 19th century, however (and centuries before), it was all herbs and hot springs, particularly in Virginia, which once boasted some of the biggest and best hot spring resorts in the world.

But that’s not what this article is about – because we’re here to tell you about Virginia’s FREE hot spring soaks. And while Virginia is not on the typical hot-springer’s wish list due to the lukewarm temperatures of its healing waters, there are still some gems to be enjoyed there. Read on to find out more.

1. Alum Springs

Alum Springs, in the city of Fredericksburg within Alum Springs Park, offers a fun, shallow, natural mineral pool for the whole family to enjoy.

What To Expect

Alum Springs is one of the most popular thermal hot springs in Virginia, surrounded by trees and positive park vibes, the perfect place to go on a picnic with friends or family.

Alum Springs Park is a beautiful 34-acre outdoor park, in the upper end of which are the woodland springs, once flocked to for their curative properties, now serving more as a source of entertainment for visitors, with plenty of moderate trails, picnic spots and childrens’ playgrounds nearby to enjoy. The springs, with a picturesque wooden bridge over a natural pool, keep a consistent 72°F and have a greenish tint, though are mostly clear – great for little ones to splash in.

Alum Springs. Photo by

Don’t Miss…

  • Biking and hiking along the Rappahannock River and other nature trails.
  • Birdwatching.
  • Wildlife spotting.
  • Fat Annie’s Swimming Hole with a 20-foot sinkhole and a cascading rock waterfall.

Good To Know

The rocks and water can have algae growing on them. Take water sandals along with you.

Where: Alum Springs Park in the city of Fredericksburg

Clothing required.

2. Bolar Springs

Bolar Springs. Source: bakertroop

Nestled in the woodland, this blue warm springs pool offers an old but still popular soaking treat for visitors to Virginia.

What To Expect

Bolar Springs is a large concrete-walled and rock-bottomed spring in the lush green of nature. The water here maintains an average temperature of 73°F, perfect for cooling off on hot summer days.

Bolar Springs. Photo by Daren Carpenter

Don’t Miss…

Good To Know

Expect harmless but slippery algae – tread with care!

Where: Warm Springs, Virginia

3. Bragg Spring

Source: beyondthetent

Bragg Spring is a clean water, geothermal pool in Raleigh County that was named after a local family.

The pool, of a steady 75°F, promises a refreshing and cooling experience in the hot summer months. If you feel a little too cool or too warm, shift around a bit, as the hot minerals bubble up from the ground to form warm pockets.

Don’t Miss…

Good To Know

Where: Raleigh County, Charlottesville, West Virginia

4. Falling Spring

Source: farm7.staticflickr

Imagina a rocky cliff surrounded by woodland, over which pours a curtain of mineral-rich spring water. This is Falling Spring, and it makes a perfect soaking destination for hot-springers looking for something more dramatic than the usual pools.

What To Expect

The largest of its kind in the state of Virginia, Falling Spring is a stunning 80-foot natural waterfall in the woods which is easily accessed from the road. 

The water sits in the dirt-bottomed pools at its base at around 77°F.

Don’t Miss

Good To Know

It is said that Thomas Jefferson once described Falling Springs Falls as “remarkable.” 

The rocks here can be sharp and/or covered in algae – take along some water sandals to protect yourself!

Where: Covington, Alleghany Highlands, Virginia.

5. Blowing Springs

The river near Blowing Springs. Source: Chris Clark

For another unique hot spring experience in Virginia, check out Blowing Springs, a water source where hot air is blown out of the rocks at a constant 58°F.

Back Creek, running alongside the lovely, wooded nearby campground, has numerous swimming holes to cool down in on hot summer days.

Don’t Miss…

Good To Know

Where: 7698 Mountain Valley Rd, Warm Springs, VA

The Takeaway

While Virginia doesn’t have much choice or heated water to offer hot-springers on a budget, it does offer some rare gems in lush, green nature that are well worth exploring- some of them really quite special.


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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