Top Five California Hot Springs to Visit

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Last updated
May 13, 2024

You haven’t experienced all that #vanlife has to offer until you’ve soaked in nature’s jacuzzi….aka…

You haven’t experienced all that #vanlife has to offer until you’ve soaked in nature’s jacuzzi….aka a hot spring. They’re great for those looking to unwind, soak sore muscles, or if your last shower has become a distant memory. We’re highlighting our top five favorite hot springs in Southern California!

The following hot springs are all fairly easy to find, accessible year-round, and make for the most (naturally) luxurious pit stops on your next road trip.

1. Keough Hot Ditch California Hot Spring

Not to be confused with Keough Hot Springs Resort, Keough Hot Ditch is located just 6 miles south of Bishop, on the west side of Highway 395.

After some dirt-road driving (a breeze in our Sprinter campervan rentals) — you’ll find these springs a popular spot for many travelers, so plan for visiting during off-hours if your schedule allows.

Pro tip: nudity is welcomed here, so feel free to rock none other than your birthday suit.

Also prepare to be amazed by views overlooking the high desert of Owens Valley, and in the impressive peaks of the Eastern Sierras.

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2. Wild Willy’s Hot Springs

The valley floor of Mammoth Lakes boasts a number of springs, with these being one of the easiest to get to.

The “trek” to Wild Willy’s is made even easier with an elevated wooden walkway that’ll take you a quarter of a mile.

Plus, their largest pool is about 10 feet wide and 3 feet deep allowing you to submerge yourself completely.

On top of all that, and naked grandpa Willy likely offering you a beer, these springs are sure to leave a lasting impression on you and your travel crew.

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3. Crab Cooker California Hot Springs

Also located near Mammoth Lakes, these springs are for those of you seeking out the hottest of HOT springs.

Though some hot springs surrounding the Mammoth Lakes can be disappointingly lukewarm, these ones will not disappoint.

Crab Cooker is an especially good pick mid-winter, in case your day outside leaves you chilled to the bone and craving a particularly hot bath.

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4. Benton Hot Springs

A quirky, quaint and hidden oasis 40 minutes outside of Bishop, Benton Hot Springs really are a hidden gem of among the Eastern Sierras.

These springs also run VERY hot.

Boasting 140 degrees Fahrenheit in temperature, these tubs are fortunately engineered with hoses that’ll allow you to adjust said temperature to your liking – a bonus in both the summer and winter months.

Benton is a great way to relax after a long day of traveling in your off-grid Sprinter campervan

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5. Travertine Hot Springs

Travertine Hot Springs lie on California State Park land just south of the town of Bridgeport along Route 395. They’re a true favorite among the VanCraft team.  We’ve visited these springs countless times, and plan to return in the very near future.

Whether you’re looking to feel pampered post-hike, soak in some breathtaking views or properly zen out… You must add Travertine Hot Springs to your must-visit list next time you’re driving through Southern California.

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