Affiliate Disclaimer: This article may contain affiliate links. We may earn a small commission if readers clicks through and make a purchase. See Affiliate Disclosure here.

8 Natural Hot Springs In SoCal That Are So Relaxing, You’ll Never Want To Leave!

I must admit, my affection for SoCal’s natural hot springs might border on obsession, but can you blame me? 

From the secluded hot springs hidden deep within the desert to the lush, forested hideaways that feel like Mother Nature made them herself.

Southern California’s hot springs really show off the raw beauty and healing power of the earth.

Each hot spring, with its unique mineral composition and setting, offers a different kind of magic. 

But here’s the thing – while the allure of these natural wonders is undeniable, knowing where to find them can be difficult.

So, to help you out, I’m revealing the 8 best natural hot springs in Southern California.

In these spots, the waters are warm, the views are breathtaking and every visit leaves you longing for just one more soak.

1. Deep Creek Hot Springs

Deep Creek Hot Springs is a natural gem located in the San Bernardino National Forest in Southern California. 

This beautiful spot is famous for its series of hot springs, which are natural pools of warm water where people can relax and soak in the stunning surroundings. 

The mineral-rich waters of Deep Creek Hot Springs are even said to have therapeutic properties!

There are actually 5 main hot springs here, all varying sizes and temperatures. In fact, the largest hot spring is even big enough to swim in!

The temperatures of each pool vary but they do reach up to 105ºF in the hottest pools.

One of the best parts is that these hot springs are non-commercial and open to the public so it’s completely free to visit!

The area surrounding the Deep Creek Hot Springs is also known for its scenic beauty. 

You’ll find a mix of rugged hills, clear streams and diverse wildlife which makes it a popular destination for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life.

How To Get To Deep Creek Hot Springs

The hot springs themselves are situated in a remote area and it does require a bit of a hike to get there.

There are a few trails that lead to the hot springs but the most common route is the Bowen Ranch Trail which is around 2 miles long.

To reach the starting point for the hike, you can drive to Bowen Ranch which is easily accessible by car from major roads in the area. 

Please note there may be an entrance fee to the San Bernardino National Forest via this route.

It’s always a good idea to check the current conditions and any access restrictions before planning your trip as this area can be affected by the weather.

It’s also important to note that the area around Deep Creek Hot Springs is natural and relatively undeveloped which is part of its charm.

This does mean there are no facilities/amenities on-site.

2. Avila Hot Springs

You’ll find the Avila Hot Springs near the town of Avila Beach along California’s central coast. 

This place is famous for its naturally heated mineral water that comes from a geothermal spring deep beneath the earth’s surface. 

The hot springs have been a popular spot for relaxation for over a century as they were discovered back in 1907 by oil drillers.

The hot springs are part of a larger resort that offers a variety of amenities including a heated swimming pool that is fed by the natural mineral water, as well as a spa, cabins and camping sites. 

To access the resort (including the hot spring), it costs $28 for an adult all day pass with discounts for children and seniors. 

For $17 you can get a morning pass which gives access from 8am until noon.

The main attraction, of course, is the large, outdoor hot spring where guests can soak and enjoy the health benefits of the mineral-rich waters. 

These waters are believed to help soothe muscles, improve circulation and promote overall well-being.

How To Get To Avila Hot Springs

Getting to Avila Hot Springs is pretty straightforward. It’s located just off Highway 101, about 10 miles south of San Luis Obispo. 

The hot springs are easily accessible by car and there’s plenty of parking available for visitors. 

Once you’re there, you’ll find yourself surrounded by the natural beauty of the area with lush landscapes and the nearby coastline adding to the peaceful atmosphere.

3. Montecito Hot Springs

Montecito Hot Springs is a hidden gem nestled in the lush landscapes of Montecito, near the city of Santa Barbara. 

This peaceful spot is famous for its natural hot springs which are surrounded by the stunning Santa Ynez Mountains. 

The hot springs are not as developed as some other hot spring resorts in California, they’re more natural which adds to their charm. 

The water itself is a stunning, vibrant shade of blue and you’ll find several pools here, each a different temperature.

The waters tend to reach around 80ºF so it’s not quite as hot as some other hot springs on this list.

These hot springs actually form part of an old abandoned resort from the 1800s but there is very little left of the resort, just a few old ruins.

The pools are fed by the geothermal activity beneath the earth which heats the water naturally! Pretty cool right!?

The setting is quite picturesque with the surrounding mountains and lush plants creating a scenic backdrop. It feels like a natural sanctuary.

How To Get To Montecito Hot Springs

Getting to Montecito Hot Springs is pretty easy but it does involve a hike through the beautiful trails of the Los Padres National Forest. 

The closest access point to the hot springs is typically from the Hot Springs Trailhead, located at the end of East Mountain Drive. The hike is around 2 miles each way.

From there, you will need to hike along various trails and navigate through the natural terrain of the area. The hike itself isn’t too difficult though.

It’s important to come prepared with good hiking shoes, water and possibly a map, as the trails can be confusing for those unfamiliar with the area.

The journey to Montecito Hot Springs is all part of the experience and allows you to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the region.

4. Azure Palm Hot Springs Resort

Azure Palm Hot Springs is a luxurious resort located in Desert Hot Springs, near the famous Palm Springs area. 

This spot is a relatively new addition to California’s hot springs destinations and offers a modern and comfortable experience for those seeking relaxation in a beautiful desert setting. 

It is actually situated on top of a hill overlooking Mount San Jacinto and the Coachella Valley.

Azure Palm is known for its mineral-rich hot spring waters which are believed to have therapeutic properties that can help soothe the body.

The hot springs at Azure Palm are part of a spa and resort that provides guests with a variety of ways to enjoy the healing waters. 

There are several outdoor pools of varying temperatures which allows every guest to find the perfect spot to relax. 

Additionally, the resort features private soaking tubs in some of the rooms if you’d prefer to soak in private.

You can purchase a day pass for $79 which gives you access to the resort’s pool, spas, sauna, lounging areas and yoga studio. You’ll also be provided with a robe and slippers.

You can also choose to stay overnight for an additional fee.

The water here is naturally heated by the earth’s geothermal activity and is rich in minerals like magnesium and calcium, which are good for skin and overall health.

Apart from the hot springs, the resort also offers spa treatments, yoga classes and wellness workshops so it’s perfect for anyone looking to unwind.

How To Get To Azure Palm Hot Springs

Getting to Azure Palm Hot Springs is easy, especially if you’re coming from Los Angeles or San Diego. 

It’s located just off Interstate 10, about a two-hour drive from LA. 

5. Beverly Hot Springs

Beverly Hot Springs is the only natural mineral hot spring located in Los Angeles itself.

You’ll find it nestled in the heart of Los Angeles, offering visitors a welcome escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

The hot springs themselves are fed by a natural artesian well that pumps mineral-rich water from deep within the earth. 

This water is heated by natural geothermal activity and surfaces at the spa where it fills various pools and treatment areas. 

The water here reaches temperatures between 95ºF and 105ºF.

Visitors to Beverly Hot Springs can enjoy soaking in the warm, mineral-infused water which is said to help with relaxation, improve skin health and alleviate muscle pain.

The spa also features many other facilities including a large main soaking pool, private baths, saunas and steam rooms, as well as areas for spa treatments like massages and facials.

Day passes cost $45 on weekdays and $50 on weekends. This gives you access to all of the facilities.

How To Get To Beverly Hot Springs

Getting to Beverly Hot Springs is easy, thanks to its central location. 

It’s situated on Oxford Avenue between Beverly Hills and downtown Los Angeles meaning it’s close to many of the city’s popular neighborhoods and attractions. 

6. Sespe Hot Springs

Sespe Hot Springs is a natural wonder located in the remote wilderness of the Los Padres National Forest near Santa Barbara. 

This secluded hot spring is known for its stunning natural setting and the therapeutic qualities of its mineral-rich waters averaging 105ºF.

Set against a backdrop of rugged mountains and expansive wildlands, Sespe Hot Springs offers a true escape into nature, far from the hustle and bustle of city life.

The hot springs themselves consist of several natural pools of varying temperatures with the water heated by geothermal activity deep beneath the earth’s surface. 

These pools provide visitors with the opportunity to soak in the warm, soothing waters while surrounded by the natural beauty of the forest and mountains. 

How To Get To Sespe Hot Springs

Now, a word of warning, Sespe Hot Springs does require significant effort to get to but you’ll get to hike through some of California’s most beautiful and untouched landscapes. 

The most common route to the hot springs is via the Sespe River Trail which starts from the Piedra Blanca trailhead near Ojai. 

This hike can be quite challenging as it covers a distance of over 15 miles one way, depending on the exact path taken and the current conditions. 

There are 4 campsites along the trail that are free to use.

Hikers need to be well-prepared, carrying sufficient water, food and camping gear if planning to stay overnight, as the journey can take an entire day.

The isolation of Sespe Hot Springs adds to its appeal. It’s a place where you can disconnect from technology and reconnect with nature.

Due to its remoteness, very few people ever visit Sespe Hot Springs so you’ll probably have it to yourself.

7. Agua Caliente County Park Hot Springs

Agua Caliente County Park Hot Springs is a popular recreational area located in the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. 

This park is well-loved for its 3 natural hot springs which give visitors a chance to relax and enjoy the therapeutic benefits of warm mineral water in a beautiful desert setting.

The hot springs at Agua Caliente are a natural feature but have been enhanced with man-made facilities more recently.

The park features three pools: an indoor jacuzzi, an outdoor wading pool and a large outdoor swimming pool. 

The indoor pool is where you’ll find the hot springs water at its warmest so is perfect for soaking and easing muscle tension. 

The outdoor pools provide a cooler but still enjoyable experience and allow visitors to relax under the vast desert sky.

Pool entry costs just $3 per person making it a super affordable option.

Agua Caliente County Park is known not just for its hot springs but also for its stunning desert landscape.

You’ll be surrounded by rugged mountains, vast open spaces and an abundance of native plants and wildlife. 

It’s an ideal spot for those who enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, bird watching and stargazing, especially in the cooler months when the desert comes alive with color and cooler temperatures.

There’s also tons of camping sites nearby for anyone that wants to stay overnight including RV and tent sites as well cabins.

How To Get To Agua Caliente County Park Hot Springs

Getting to Agua Caliente County Park Hot Springs is relatively straightforward, though it does lie in a remote part of the desert. 

The park is located about 100 miles east of San Diego, near the small town of Julian. 

8. Gaviota Hot Springs

Gaviota Hot Springs is a hidden gem located near the coast within the Gaviota State Park in Santa Barbara County.

This spot is a bit of a secret oasis and is known for its warm, sulfuric waters that bubble up from the earth, creating a natural hot tub that is open to the public. 

Although technically a hot spring, you’ll find the water here doesn’t get super hot.

It’s more of a ‘warm spring’ but is still super refreshing.

The hot springs are surrounded by the beautiful, rugged terrain of the Santa Ynez Mountains meaning you can enjoy the outdoors and the scenic views of the area as you soak.

The hot springs themselves are relatively small and only consist of a couple of pools that are fed by the natural geothermal activity of the region. 

It’s a great destination for hikers looking for a relaxing way to unwind after a day of exploring the trails and the natural beauty of the park.

The best part about Gaviota Hot Springs is that they tend to be pretty quiet. In fact, you might have the entire hot spring to yourself if you’re lucky.

How To Get To Gaviota Hot Springs

Gaviota Hot Springs is located just off Highway 101, about 30 miles west of Santa Barbara. 

To get there, you’ll need to enter Gaviota State Park and look for the trailhead marked for the hot springs. 

It’s about a 1-mile hike from the parking area to the springs, along a trail that takes you through oak woodlands and up a gentle incline.

The trail is mostly shaded which is a nice bonus, but you do have to be wary of poison oak and it can get pretty muddy here depending on the weather.

The hike itself is relatively easy and suitable for most fitness levels but it’s always a good idea to wear comfortable hiking shoes and bring water.

The hike to the hot springs is all part of the adventure as the trail offers beautiful views of the surrounding mountains and the Gaviota Pass.

Sophie Davis

Born and raised in the Bay area of California, Sophie is a California native. She joined our team in 2023 to create travel guides on California.

Learn more about the Traveller's Elixir Team.

Share to...