The Underrated West Virginia Spring That Just Might Be Your New Favorite Summer Destination
There are plenty of natural pools and swimming holes in West Virginia, but natural hot springs are a bit more rare. That is why Berkeley Springs State Park is a destination you don’t want to miss.
Before European settlers ever set foot on this land, before America was even an idea, not to mention an actual place, the natives of this country were well acquainted with the natural hot springs in West Virginia.
When the first settlers arrived in 1730, word spread quickly about the healing and curative powers of the springs.
At 16, George Washington first soaked in the springs and would come to use them regularly over the course of his lifetime, especially as his aliments became worse. Even today, the spring-fed bathtub he used still remains, now with a plaque bearing his name.
It is largely through his efforts, and his prominent position in politics, that Berkeley Springs fame as a health spa solidified.
When the land, owned by Lord Fairfax, went up for public sale, several prominent men made purchases there, including George Washington, seven members of the Continental Congress, five Revolutionary generals, three signers of the Declaration of Independence, and four signers of the Constitution.
In 1776, the town of Bath (now Berkeley Springs) was established on the land where the springs flow. After the town was established, several bathhouses and public buildings were constructed on this spot, turning the springs into America's first resort spa.
The Roman Bathhouse, one of the largest buildings, has a series of private mineral baths for up to 6 adults. The Main Bathhouse also has several private baths, including nine 750-gallon soaking tubs heated to 102 degrees.
Alternatively, you can relax in a 150-gallon whirlpool tub fed by powerful jets. Like the Roman baths, the water is heated to 102 degrees. All are fed by the natural springs.
The spa also offers massages, saunas and showers. It also has a public tap for free spring water and a large outdoor swimming pool.
The natural springs are fed from an underground source, providing water that is always warm.
Even in the winter, the water is naturally heated to 74.3 degrees. The flowing water remains consistently at this temperature year round.
These naturally fed springs fill into several outside pools and flow along in streams bordered by colonial-era brickwork, giving the spa a very Romanesque, old world look.
Regardless of your spa preferences, whether outside or in, this natural spa is definitely not to be missed.
Berkeley Springs State Park is located at 2 S Washington St. in Berkeley Springs.
Have you ever been to Berkeley Springs? Feel free to comment below and tell us about your visit.
This is not the only spa in the area, either. If you want to indulge more than once, and need some overnight accommodations, check out
this incredible spring-fed pool that you absolutely need to visit.
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