Hot springs have long been considered one of nature’s most precious resources. Lauded for their relaxing, soothing properties, the heated water in hot spas is produced from the internal heat of the earth. Australia is fortunate enough to be blessed with an abundance of natural hot springs. Here’s our guide to the best in each state.
Innot Hot Springs
Historically, the spring water at Innot was hauled to Townsville by mules then bottled and shipped to Europe. Located on the Atherton Tableland in Far North Queensland, this area has been in high demand for hundreds of years and remains so to this day. However, Europeans now come to experience the hot springs firsthand (as the spring water is no longer bottled and shipped). Visitors are able to camp in the area, swim in the local pools and use the local soaking houses.
This place is the master plan of two brothers, Charles and Richard Davidson, who heard a rumour that hot geothermal waters had been discovered on the Mornington Peninsula. The brothers snapped up 42 acres of land, spent several years drilling and boring and the result is one of the best hot spring sites in the country. Located in Rye, an hour and a half from Melbourne, natural hot mineral waters, varying from 37°C to 43°C, flow across some 25 pools and private baths from an aquifer 637 metres below the surface, drawing people from miles around to enjoy them.
Dalhousie Springs, Witjira National Park
Those looking for a hot springs experience with a big side dose of adventure should look no further than the Dalhousie Springs. Located in the Witjira National Park, on the edge of the Simpson Desert in remote South Australia, the Dalhousie Main Spring is unlike any other you will visit. Surrounded by lush vegetation and an abundance of wildlife, this isolated but beautiful spring’s waters are a warm and welcoming 37°C. There are camping grounds near the spring, but you’ll need a Desert Parks Pass to enter and explore the area.Sparadise, Blue Mountains
Located in the picturesque Blue Mountains near Lake Lyell, Sparadise is a privately-owned Japanese bathhouse and day spa, which is only open to the public on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. (Entry during the week is by invitation-only from the owner). A three-hour pass allows access to hot and cold spring spas, the herbal steam bath and time in the tranquil Japanese Zen Garden. Overnight stays and additional spa treatments are also available.
Hastings Caves State Reserve
Located a 90-minute drive south of Hobart in the stunning Hastings Caves State Reserve, the thermal springs pool is surrounded by lush forest, dolomite caves and mountains. First opened to the public in 1939, the thermal pools water makes for an inviting swim with a temperature of 28°C. The pool is hygienically controlled, with facilities including a large picnic area, electric barbeques, and shower and change facilities. Visitors can also talk a walk along the Hot Springs Track, where two streams (one warm, the other cold) converge.
The Zebedee Thermal Springs are nestled within the majestic El Questro Wilderness Park, located in the untamed heart of the Kimberley, Western Australia. With temperatures between 28°C and 32°C, the Zebedee Springs are a stunning natural oasis surrounded by palm trees, cliffs and rocks in a sprawling park that is a million acres in size. A hot springs experience you won’t soon forget.
Lightning Ridge Artesian Bore Baths
While Lightning Ridge may be most famous for its rare black opals, this outback mining town, located in northwest New South Wales, is also home to some lovely artesian bore baths. With an average temperature of 42°C, these therapeutic baths are free and open all hours for a spot of relaxation.
The Elsey National Park, located some 110km south of Katherine, is home to many natural springs. The Mataranka Hot Springs, with its warm 34°C waters and palm-fringed pool, is a popular attraction, as is the slightly quieter but no less beautiful Rainbow Springs nearby.
Deep Water Spa and Baths is a luxury relaxation and wellness clinic located in the southwest coastal town of Warrnambool in Victoria. The bathhouse sits atop the Dilwyn Aquifer, which feeds into Deep Water’s open geothermal mineral spa (which has a temperature of 35-37°C) and their smaller private mineral baths (which are a slightly warmer 38-39°C). A range of pampering treatments like facials, body treatments and massage are also available.
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