Hot springs are special, the tradition of drinking the water for it’s curative powers and using it for bathing continues today, just as in days long past. Here are our favorite hot springs around the world:
1. Mammoth Hot Springs
A large hot spring complex near Fort Yellowstone called Mammoth Hot Springs, the water is heated by magma to about 170°F (~77°C). Algae living in the warm pools have tinted the travertine shades of brown, orange, red, and green. It is the largest known carbonate-depositing spring in the world. The most famous feature at the springs is the Minerva Terrace, a series of travertine terraces.
2. Morning Glory Pool
Morning Glory Pool is a hot spring in the Upper Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park in the United States. The distinct blue green and yellow colors of the pool are due to bacteria which inhabit the water.
3. The Blue Lagoon
The Blue Lagoon is a geothermal spa is one of the most visited attractions in Iceland. The warm waters are rich in minerals like silica and sulfur and bathing in the Blue Lagoon is rumored to help some people suffering from skin diseases such as psoriasis. The water temperature in the bathing and swimming area of the lagoon
averages 40 °C (104 °F).The lagoon is fed by the water output of the nearby geothermal power plant Svartsengi. Superheated water is vented from the ground near a lava flow and used to run turbines that generate electricity. Then the water is fed into the lagoon for recreational and medicinal users to bathe in. The Blue Lagoon holds 6 million liters of water, renewed every 40 hours.
Wai-O-Tapu is an active geothermal area north of the Reporoa caldera in New Zealand’s Taupo Volcanic Zone. The area has many hot springs noted for their colourful appearance, in addition to the Lady Knox Geyser. The area also has a long history as a tourist attraction. While the area has been protected as a scenic reserve since 1931, a tourist operation occupies part of the reserve under a concession. It operates under the name “Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland. Notable features include Lady Knox Geyser, Champagne Pool, Artist’s Palette, Primrose Terrace and boiling mud pools.
5. Jigokudani Monkey Park
Jigokudani Monkey Park is in Yamanouchi, Shimotakai District, Nagano Prefecture, Japan. It is part of the Joshinetsu Kogen National Park, and is located in the valley of the Yokoyu-River. The name Jigokudani, meaning “Hell’s Valley”, is due to the steam and boiling water that bubbles out of small crevices in the frozen ground, surrounded by steep cliffs and formidably cold and hostile forests. The heavy snowfalls (snow covers the ground for 4 months a year), an elevation of 850 meters, and being only accessible via a narrow two kilometer footpath through the forest, keep it uncrowded despite being relatively well-known. It is famous for its large population of wild Japanese Macaques, more commonly referred to as Snow Monkeys, that go to the valley during the winter, foraging elsewhere in the national park during the warmer months. Starting in 1963, the monkeys descend from the steep cliffs and forest to sit in the warm waters, and return to the security of the forests in the evenings.
6. Aguas Calientes
The closest town to Machu Picchu in Peru is Machu Picchu Pueblo, which features several hot springs. The pools of sulphurous hot springs are located at the upper section of valley, having different temperatures and altitudes. The hot springs are accessible via train and the destination is worth a visit not only for the refreshing hot springs but for the city in itself, which is an architectural wonder built with Incan techniques.
7. Conundrum Hot Springs
Essentially undeveloped, wilderness location, Conundrum Hot Springs is one of Colorado’s most exquisite settings. The pools vary in size and temperature, but the larger pools average about 102 degrees F, depending on the season The pools are craters of rock hewn into their present shape over years of visitation. The larger pools are more than 3 feet deep and have room for several people, if need be. There are steep avalanche chutes and pockets of snow that almost never leave, as well as waterfalls, all around. At nearly 12,000 feet in elevation one can look down the long valley marvel at the view.
8. Kusatsu Onsen
The main feature of Kusatsu Onsen is one of the sources of hot spring water located in the center of the town, called Yubatake. There is an active volcano called Shirane-san near Kusatsu Onsen. A popular sightseeing spot here is a crater lake called Yugama. The water in the lake is emerald green. The springs were a well known resort for centuries but they became one of the best known of such locations after the water there was recommended for its health benefits.
9. Deep Creek Hot Springs
A natural hot spring located in the San Bernardino National Forest on the Deep Creek fork of the Mojave River. Being located next to a creek provides for both hot and cold water bathing. The landscape surrounding Deep Creek is unique, and its recreation opportunities are valued at the regional and national levels. Thermal hot springs located here are unique and regionally important. Deep Creek supports the greatest diversity of wildlife habitats of any drainage on the San Bernardino National Forest and has earned the State designation of a Wild Trout Stream. It also represents some of the greatest diversity of vegetation communities of any drainage on the national forest. The surrounding area represents a transiticonifer forest.
10. Yangbajain Hot Springs
The Yangbajain hot springs field is at an altitude of 4290–4500 m which makes it the highest altitude set of hot springs in China. The water emerges at 30 degrees C-84 degrees C, which is above the boiling point at that altitude.