Last Updated on
← Back to ‘Your Introduction to Outdoor and Adventure Travel’
New Mexico lays claim to a dizzying number of hot springs that come in all different shapes, sizes, and styles. Here you’ll find everything from cushy, full-fledged resort hot springs where you can lounge with a piña colada, to backcountry rock pools only accessible after an arduous hike. Here’s our rundown of the 11 best hot springs New Mexico has to offer.
Riverbend Hot Springs
Located right on the banks of the Rio Grande River, Riverbend Hot Springs is located on a patch of land that has long been considered sacred by the Apache and Mimbres tribes of Southern New Mexico. The resort offers outdoor communal pools as well as smaller private pools, and is open to both the public and residents of the resort. With excellent views of the surrounding mountains and the world famous river, Riverbend is a great way to get outdoors without roughing it too much.
Sierra Grande Lodge
Originally built back in 1929, the Sierra Grande Lodge is a rustic, historic building that’s been renovated with the modern adventurer in mind. It is located in the small town of Truth or Consequences, which provides an idyllic backdrop for a relaxing experience. The natural hot springs themselves are extremely relaxing and there are also options for spa and massage services, all of which revolve around the healing mineral water. In addition to Riverbend Hot Springs and Sierra Grande Lodge, the town of Truth or Consequences lays claim to over 7 historic bathhouses that are certainly worth a visit.
Jemez Hot Springs
Just an hour drive from Albuquerque and a 1.5-hour drive from Santa Fe, the Jemez Mountain range is a hotbed of geothermal activity that has tons of hot springs located throughout. The most well-developed in the region is the Giggling Springs Hot Springs. The water here is actually mineral-rich seawater that got trapped inland. Surrounding the springs are nice shaded areas with views of the surrounding mountain ranges. Note that the springs are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, but every other day there are options for lodging, shopping, eating, and short hikes to various lookout points. If you happen to be in the Albuquerque area in October, here’s Your Guide to the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta 2019.
Faywood Hot Springs
Faywood Hot Spring Public and Private Pools is a rustic natural geothermal resort located in southwestern New Mexico. The resort boasts 13 separate pools that range in temperature from 100 to 110 degrees. The pools are divided into clothing-required, clothing-optional, private, and public. You can feel free to visit for the day or they have six cozy cabins available for overnight stays, as well as areas for tent camping and hookups for RV parking.
San Antonio Hot Springs
For those looking for a much more rugged experience, opt for the San Antonio Hot Springs. Nestled into the side of a canyon in the Jemez Mountain Range, these trickling streams are only accessible by foot and are not part of any kind of resort or private business. In the summer months the road is open and only requires a short one-mile hike, but the winter months require a 10-mile round trip snowshoeing adventure — be sure to check the arrival directions in advance. Along with New Mexico’s ski resorts, this makes for one of the best things to do during the winter months.
McCauley Hot Springs
For another outdoors, away-from-it-all experience that will be blissfully free of crowds, head towards McCauley Hot Springs. From the parking lot, it’s just a quick 2.1-mile hike that leads through the dense trees and eventually ends up at the springs located in a mountain meadow. Much like the San Antonio Hot Springs, it’s more of a rock pool than anything developed. These ones aren’t as warm as the others (usually ranging in temperature from 90 to 100), but they’re still a great option (especially if you’re looking to ditch your clothes).
Manby Hot Springs
In the Taos area of New Mexico, there are plenty of hot springs available for eager adventurers and relaxers. Manby Hot Springs, also known as Stagecoach Hot Springs, is a great secluded spot with two springs available. They both have nice sand bottoms that make the experience much more comfortable. Note that this is a popular destination for nudists, so have that in mind if you’re traveling with kids. At just 20 minutes from Taos and just a 20-minute hike, it’s one of the most accessible day trips from Taos.
Black Rock Hot Springs
Just down the road from Manby Hot Springs are the Black Rock Hot Springs. This spot is very similar to Manby Hot Springs in that there are two small primitive pools just about a 10-minute walk from the parking spot. The pools can get quite deep as far as hot springs go, reaching up to four feet in some areas. Depending on the time of year (especially during spring runoff), the springs can get inundated by cold river water, so maybe opt to visit during summer, fall, or winter months.
Montezuma Hot Springs
Just outside of New Mexico’s Las Vegas is the town of Montezuma, which hosts a few great options for warm water relaxation. It used to be operated by a resort but is now just open to the public, with some old vintage 19th-century buildings adding some character. This is a good spot for kids as it’s just off the road, is clean, and clothing is required.
The best vacation rentals for the lowest price
Spence Hot Springs
If you need an introduction to the beautiful scenery that New Mexico has to offer, Spence Hot Springs should probably be on the top of your list. The pools here are perched on the side of Jemez Canyon and they offer incredible views down into the national forest below. However, the secret about Spence is out — so try to arrive in the morning to beat the crowds. Come nighttime it becomes a bit of a party atmosphere. If you’re in the hot spring game for the scenery, pop up north to neighboring Colorado to discover the Best Clothing-Optional Hot Springs in Colorado.
Turkey Creek Hot Springs
Just north of the town of Gila and the Gila River, the Turkey Hot Springs are unlike any other on this list. It’s a lush oasis hideaway surrounded by tons of trees and blessed with a few short waterfalls. While there aren’t breathtaking views, you’ll have your own little slice of paradise. It’s a challenging hike but well worth it. Again, check in advance how to reach Turkey Creek Hot Springs.