Image of Fifth Water Hot Springs, Spanish Fork, Utah
Utah Valley boasts two popular spots where people can soak in a natural hot spring.
1) Saratoga Hot Springs
One place is in Saratoga Springs, and is actually where the city got its name. Once named for the famous New York Saratoga resort, early settler John C. Nagle owned the springs long before they were officially opened on July 24, 1884. When German immigrant John Beck purchased the ranch and surrounding land, he renamed it Beck's Saratoga Springs. By the mid-1910s, the land had changed hands several times. Over the next decades several improvements to the area were suggested but never successful, but the Hot Springs remained a popular destination.
The Saratoga Hot Springs are easily accessible and close to Salt Lake and Utah counties. They actually border Utah Lake and are good to visit year-round. When you visit, be aware of mud and plan accordingly. Also, don't forget to bring a towel and wear a swimsuit!
For directions to get there, check the map.
2) Fifth Water Hot Springs
The other hot springs in Utah Valley is Fifth Water Hot Springs, or sometimes known as Diamond Fork Hot Springs, near Spanish Fork. There is a hike that helps keep the springs secluded, but it's flat and easy enough to navigate for all ages.
You may want to bundle up for the hike and wear your swimming suit underneath a couple layers, for sun or cold protection, depending on which time of the year you go. The pools are bright and colorful, with the temperature and water color varying between pools, which adds to the experience.
Though it is popular among college students, it is a family friendly hot spring, as skinny-dipping is illegal in Utah County. You'll want to bring a towel, change of clothes, and shoes for the hike. For directions to get there, check the map.
(Photo Credit: @davidmrule)