Nestled between the United States and Central America, Mexico is a huge country with a lot of natural landmarks. In its roster of tourist attractions are hot springs, known in Spanish as “aguas termales”. Nestled from north to south, these thermal mineral springs can be found at both primitive, undeveloped pools and developed resorts with amenities.
List of Aguas Termales in MEX
The border town of Tijuana, Mexico, south of San Diego, California, features the Valparaiso Day Spa Aguas Termales. For those visiting south of the border for the day or staying longer in this coastal city, a trip here will refresh your mind and detoxify your body. Hot springs that are developed as a resort, usually offer other on-site amenities, such as a day spa, and some even have lodging on-site.
Map of Aguas Termales in MEX
- Click on a blue pin to view hot springs pool.
- Click the upper right corner to view the Mexico Hot Springs Map in a new window.
Local MEX Hot Springs
Guide to Mexico’s Natural Hot Springs
Mexico has a vast array of hot springs and something for every budget and every preference. Like many other nations, the history of thermal bathing runs deep in the land.
The Mayans used the spring water as a tool of worship and viewed them as pools of magic. Who wouldn’t want to bath in an effervescent pool of magic? Mexico is a country with quite a bit of volcanic activity, which is what heats the underground spring water before it flows to the surface.
To show how wide the array of thermal springs choices (often called “agua caliente” or “aquas termales” in Spanish) is, know that there’s one resort that offers a completely sustainable, off-the-grid experience. Another is totally underground, romantically lit by candles. One more has a tiered pool for bathing, the ledges of the rock basin melding into the beautiful landscape.
We’ll name some of the stand-out hot springs spots below. Locations are separated into two categories; those on the Gulf of California and those that are on the mainland.
Aguas Caliente on the Gulf of California
Near the California border lies Guadalupe Canyon Oasis Desert Hot Springs. Hugged by the mountains and swathed in tropical trees, there are several rock-lined hot springs. The springs aren’t concentrated in one spot, so be prepared to hike to the ones you want to visit. You can camp on-site and visit the naturally occurring mud baths.
South of Guadalupe Canyon Oasis Desert Hot Springs is the Natural Hot Springs of El Sargento. What makes these hot springs a traveler’s treasure is that they’re right on the coast. The thermal waters butt up to the ocean, and hot spring bathers often move between the springs and the cooler ocean water when they need to bring down their temperature.
The mineral waters run under the sand of the beach, which means you may end up digging your own thermal bath. As the tide comes in, the baths dug by earlier guests get washed away.
Also on the peninsula of Baja California is:
- Valparaiso Hot Springs
- Rancho San Carlos
- Santa Rita Hot Springs
Aguas Caliente on the Mainland
The northernmost hot spring on Mexico’s mainland is Cave Hot Springs, which, you can probably guess by the name, lies within a large cave. A spring waterfall is also in the cave, as are some bats that tend to not bother bathers.
If bathing in the semi-dark isn’t your thing, there is a warm pool outside as well. Camping is allowed near the hot springs, so you can wake up with the beautiful oranges and scarlets of a desert sunrise, then jump in the spring water to start your day.
Located in Hildalgo, Mexico is Grutas Tolantongo, a sprawling resort that features tiered hot springs shaped into the mountainside. The water here is a stunning turquoise, and the waterfalls that move the mineral water are accessible to guests.
There’s also a large cable bridge where hikers can stand over the valley and enjoy the steam rising through the trees. What makes this location truly unique is how it invites investigation. There are several rock caverns where a visitor can spend a quiet afternoon.
Other mainland hot springs include:
- El Molote Hot Springs
- Hot Springs Las Pilitas
- Escondido Hot Springs
- Baños Medicinales del Peñón
- Hacienda Taboada
- Hierve De Agua
- Zenti’k Project
- Termas de San Joaquin
No matter what part of Mexico you’re planning to visit, there’s likely a hot spring nearby where you can enjoy the culture and therapy of thermal bathing. You can engage in the kind of mineral water soaking that best suits you: while camping, in a resort, or on a day trip into the desert.
There are hot springs that are family-friendly, those where the romantic atmosphere is best for couples, and those that cater to single bathers. Learn more about visiting Mexico on our sister site, La Vida Nomad.