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British Columbia has a significant number of hot springs, many of which are situated in some of the most scenic areas in the world. While most hot springs in BC are located in delightful undeveloped areas, often reached after a long hike up a mountain valley or adventurous trip by water, some have been developed into international resort destinations. Either way, allow plenty of time to experience the wonders that await you in British Columbia.

Hotsprings in the Kootenays
View map of the Kootenays and BC Rockies

Ainsworth Hot Springs

Photo: Ainsworth Hot Springs
In the heart of the Kootenay wilderness is the community of Ainsworth Hot Springs. Set into the mountainside overlooking the vast expanse of Kootenay Lake and the Purcell Mountains is Ainsworth Hot Springs resort, which features three odourless pools, a 150-foot unique horseshoe-shaped cave, main lounging pool and stream-fed cold plunge. A highlight of the natural hot springs is the horseshoe cave, where the darkness, the mineral deposits and the humidity all combine to offer an exhilarating experience.

The hot steamy, odourless shower of mineralized water falls from the cave's roof and forms a waist-deep pool, providing a rejuvenating natural steam bath. Gallons of hot mineral water flows through the pools, changing the water naturally about six times per day.

The hot springs are heated naturally and vary in temperature between 40-42C (104-114F) in the Cave, 35-38C (96-101F) in the Pool, and 4-10C (40-50F) for the Cold Plunge. The springs originate in the Cody Caves area, which is directly above and to the west of Ainsworth Hot Springs. The water works its way down through porous rock to a depth of 1-1/2 to 2 kilometres. The water picks up temperature at a rate of 40 C per kilometre down until it strikes what is know as the lakeshore fault. This fault is an impervious layer of rock lying at an angle of 45 to 50 degrees from Ainsworth Hot Springs to a point directly below the Cody Caves. Hydraulic pressure forces the water up along the fault where it emerges at Ainsworth Hot Springs.

The caves are old mine tunnels carved out by miners attempting to increase the flow of hot water from the springs. Visitors can explore the cave's tunnels and stalactites, relax on a hot ledge, find the natural hot shower, or have a natural sauna. Ainsworth is open year-round, and is popular with families and local residents wishing to linger in the soothing waters and play in this exhilarating wilderness playground. The pools provide the perfect place to relax and enjoy some of West Kootenays majestic scenery - the Purcell Mountains and Kootenay Lake.

Ainsworth Hot Springs was probably first discovered by First Nations People, who came up to Kootenay Lake in the late summer mainly to take advantage of the Kokanee Salmon run and the ripening of the huckleberry crop. Native use of the soothing pools probably continued for decades until they guided the first prospectors to the pools. In 1882, George Ainsworth of Portland, Oregon, applied for a pre-emption of the townsite that is now Ainsworth Hot Springs. More on Ainsworth Hot Springs Resort.

Any time is a good time to visit Ainsworth, but the cool, crisp air on winter days provides a delightful contrast to the warmth and humidity in the caves. For a side trip drive take the two-hour (round-trip) Balfour ferry across Kootenay Lake to Kootenay Bay. It's a pretty trip and happens to be the world's longest free ferry ride.

From Ainsworth Hot Springs you can embark on a Kootenays hotsprings tour via Kaslo, New Denver, and north to Nakusp. Highway 31A from Kaslo to New Denver, a distance of 29 miles (47 km), follows the railbed of the Kaslo and Slocan Railway, passing the ghost towns of Zincton, Retallack, Three Forks, and Sandon. Don't expect to make any time on this exciting, rock-and-rolling road. However, it provides a picturesque route. In Kaslo, tour the SS Moyie, a sternwheeler that plied the waters of Kootenay Lake from 1898 until 1957: Open summers only, hours vary. New Denver, a former mining town, is now noted mainly for its spectacular location on Slocan Lake, with the peaks of the Valhalla Mountains rising more than 7,000 feet (2100 m) on the opposite shore.

Nakusp Hot Springs

Nakusp Hot Springs
Nakusp Hot Springs, located just outside the community of Nakusp, is a wonderful place to relax, kick back, and enjoy the soothing mineral waters of the naturally heated mineral springs. Although the Nakusp Hot Springs might lack some of the drama of the horseshoe-shaped tunnel at Ainsworth Hot Springs, they nonetheless provide an equally vivid hot-spring experience. The setting here is a narrow canyon through which the Kuskanax River runs.

Surrounded by dense forest, the circular municipal outdoor pool is divided in two. The larger portion is deep enough for swimming, and its temperature is maintained at a comfortable 37 Deg C. A small section is kept much hotter, at 41 Deg C. You'll find that a difference of even a degree of two in water temperature affects the amount of time your body can tolerate the heat. Sit in the hottest section for a while, then find a patch of snow in which to make a snow angel. There's no cold plunge pool here, just the air, which is equally effective in winter.

The hot water at Nakusp Hot Springs comes out of the earth about 1.5 km from the hot springs building, and is piped down through a 4-inch insulated pipe, which you can see as you take a stroll up there. The temperature at the source is 54.4 Deg C / 130 Deg F and certainly too hot for a dip. The water is filtered before it enters the pools, and turns over 3 times in the large (less hot) pool, and 8 times in the smaller (hot) Pool.

Open year round, Nakusp Hot Springs offers something for everyone: hiking, cross-country skiing or snow shoeing in the old growth forest surrounding the hot springs. The Nakusp Hot Springs is also a favourite spot for camping, offering campsites with electrical hookups along the Kuskanax Creek. There can be no better time to enjoy a massage than after spending the day relaxing in the hot spring pools. Overnight accommodation is offered in A-frame Cedar chalets. More on Nakusp Hot Springs.

Halcyon Hot Springs

Halcyon Hot Springs
From Nakusp drive north on Hwy 23 to Halcyon Hot Springs, located on the shores of beautiful Arrow Lakes. Halcyon's beneficial hot mineral waters have a unique combination of sodium, lithium, magnesium, calcium, and strontium, which can provide relief from arthritis, osteoporosis, and gout.

Surrounded by spectacular alpine peaks, crystal blue lakes, rivers and streams, an abundance of wildlife and a magical legend, Halcyon Hot Springs is a place of recreation and wellness.

Halcyon offers 4 pools of differing temperatures: a Hot Pool (40C/104F), a Warm Pool (38C/100F), a Large Mineral Pool (30C/87F), and a Cold Plunger (13C/55F).

First utilized by Native peoples, who camped near the flow and dug earthen pools to soak in while others hunted, fished, and gathered from the forest. Battles were fought over the soothing springs, and after one hostile encounter between the Kootenay and Colville tribes, chiefs negotiated a peace agreement. To endorse the pact, warriors fired arrows into rock crevices by the lake. These arrows remained visible to the white men who followed, and gave rise to the name Arrow Lakes.

It was a native who showed the springs to Captain Robert Sanderson, a university educated mechanical engineer who moved to the area in 1885. Sanderson saw the value of the hot mineral water and in 1890 bought the land from the Crown and constructed a small building and wooden plunges to soak in. He chose the name Halcyon, meaning calm and serene.

Halcyon Hot Springs also offers a children's water spray park, 1 and 2 bedroom deluxe chalets, cottages and cabins, campsites, and a fully serviced RV Park. There are extensive walking and hiking trails, a boat launch, as well as horseback riding, fishing, lake swimming, and ATV tours and rentals. In the winter, you can enjoy superb snowmobiling, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing, and alpine and heli-skiing are located nearby.

Those deserving of being pampered can indulge in a massage or spa treatment. Halcyon is also the perfect location for a wedding or corporate retreat. Their century-old mountainside chapel with its quaint and beautifully restored interior is ideally suited for intimate weddings or other ceremonies. More on Halcyon Hot Springs.

Continue the hotsprings tour north to Galena Bay and enjoy the scenic 30-minute ferry ride crossing Upper Arrow Lake. Once at the terminal, follow the western shoreline of Upper Arrow Lake as you head to Revelstoke, which has some of the most spectacular scenery in British Columbia. Perched high in the Monashee Mountains, next to two national parks, Mount Revelstoke National Park and Glacier National Park, Revelstoke is not to be missed by anyone who appreciates a view. Visitors flock here year round. Summer offers hiking, camping, canoeing, and trail riding, and for those who enjoy winter sports, there's great downhill and cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and snowmobiling.

Canyon Hot Springs

Photo: Canyon Hot Springs
The Canyon Hot Springs are located in Albert Canyon in British Columbia's spectacular Canadian Rocky Mountains east of Revelstoke, between Glacier and Mt. Revelstoke National Parks. Canyon Hot Springs resort is open in summer, from May to September.

Water from the spring is piped almost 2 miles down the valley side to feed the 15,000-gallon hot pool and the 60,000-gallon swimming pool. Whether you choose to soak in the hot pool or swim in the warm swimming pool, your visit is sure to be an exhilarating experience. Time spent in the mineral pools is a great way to relieve the aches and pains of travelling while you relax and enjoy the pools and surrounding scenery.

The mineral waters of Albert Canyon were allegedly discovered by CPR workmen at the turn of the century. The railway employees dug a pit at the hot springs and lined it with heavy timbers.

The open air "hot tub" was used by visitors and residents for many, many years. Today the Canyon Hot Springs are some distance away, with the water from the hot springs being piped to the pools. The Albert Canyon "ghost" town remains a short distance south of the present pool site.

The village of Albert Canyon, the gorge, the peaks and the hot springs were all named for Albert Rogers, nephew of Major Rogers, who undertook many exploration trips in the area, including the discovery of Rogers Pass. Throughout the years of steam, Albert Canyon was a "pusher" station, with a small roundhouse built in 1916. There was also a CPR agent, operators, a section gang, and living quarters for the agent upstairs in the station.

Canyon Hot Springs has a great campground and RV Park, and overnight accommodation is offered in rustic chalets, log cabins, and 1 and 2 bedroom suites. Hiking trails lead from the resort, and are located in the adjacent national parks. Fishing, trail riding, mountain climbing, whitewater rafting, golf, and boating are also popular in the area. More on Canyon Hot Springs.

Hot Springs in the BC Rockies
Map of the Kootenays and BC Rockies

Fairmont Hot Springs Resort

Fairmont Hot Springs
The community of Fairmont Hot Springs is nestled in the Columbia River Valley, between the Canadian Rocky Mountains and the Purcell Mountain range, just outside Kootenay National Park.

With two championship golf courses, spa facilities and the largest natural mineral hot pools in Canada, Fairmont Hot Springs Resort attracts visitors from all over the world. Fairmont's crystal clear, all natural, hot mineral springwater pools are a legendary attraction.

Renowned for their therapeutic qualities, Fairmont claims their pools to almost certainly be the cleanest in North America. At night the pools are drained, scrubbed, and refilled by morning with fresh, mineral-rich natural hot springs water, and over 1.5 million gallons of mineral-rich hot spring waters flow through the pools daily. In addition to the large, public hot pool complex, lodge guests enjoy a private hot, soaking pool within a short walk from guest rooms and the spa facilities.

For a more hot spring rustic experience without the admission fee charged at the resort, soak in one of three small tubs housed in separate rooms in the undeveloped Historical Baths, an old stone bath house on a knoll directly above the resort's main parking lot. A little farther up the hill from the bathhouse, also known as "The Indian Baths", a small two-person pool has been created where a spring emerges from the ground.

Guests often claim that all tension completely floats away the instant you step into the soothing heat of this natural wonder. Fairmont's therapeutic hot springs mineral water can increase metabolism, accelerate healing, soothe muscles, improve blood circulation and detoxify the body's lymphatic system. Soaking in the hot spring water allows minerals to pass through the skin and be absorbed and utilized by body cells. This can fight the effects and symptoms of fatigue, insomnia, edema, poor micro-circulation, repressed immune system, and even arthritis.

The recorded history of Fairmont Hot Springs dates to the early 1800s, when explorers discovered the 'land of smoking waters', and the curative powers of these warm mineral waters. The name Fairmont Hot Springs was given to the area by Mrs. John Galbraith, wife of a ferry operator at Galbraith's Landing near Fort Steele. More on Fairmont Hot Springs Resort.

Resume your hot springs tour south on Hwy 93/95 to Canal Flats, a small lumber-mill town between Kootenay River and Columbia Lake. Take a side trip to Whiteswan Lake Provincial Park, then onto Top of the World Provincial Park, which receives top marks as an alpine region of sublime beauty. Mount Morro (elevation 9,533 feet/2,914 m) is the highest peak in the park. Many archaeological sites are located here, in what was once the traditional home of the Upper Kootenay First Nation. Forest cover is mostly spruce, pine, and some fir, and most of the plateau is carpeted with alpine flowers. Small populations of large mammals inhabit the park, and an abundance of birds live around Fish Lake. This lake is noted for its cutthroat trout and Dolly Varden fishery, but you must have a valid BC fishing licence and a copy of the park's fishing regulations before casting a line. There are backcountry campsites and rustic cabins available.

Radium Hot Springs

Radium Hot Springs
The village of Radium Hot Springs is little more than a support system for area vacation development; gas stations, a couple of cafes, and a string of motels that grow denser as one nears the hot springs at Radium Hot Springs. But people come here for more than the town that is located within the boundaries of Kootenay National Park, which has the same mountain peaks and glaciers as Alberta's more famous Banff National Park. They come here for the natural hot springs, and Canada's largest hot springs pool.

Radium Hot Springs, the actual springs, makes an ideal soaking spot at the base of Redstreak Mountain in the Kootenay Mountain Range. The mountain setting is spectacular, and a sheer rock wall rises above two pools; one heated, the other much cooler. Unlike some hot springs, these waters are free of odorous sulphur. The water temperature varies with the season; in spring, the snowmelt cools the thermally heated springs.

The Radium Hot Springs story is as old as the Rocky Mountains themselves. It began with the unleashing of powerful forces that left its tale in heaving, tortured rocks. The earth's crust cracked along a fault, more than two kilometres deep. The shatter zone around the fault lets groundwater seep close to the earth's core heating, pressurizing and returning it to the surface with more than 700 milligrams of minerals per litre at a rate of 1 800 litres (396 gallons) per minute. The hot springs water, 44C (114F) at the source, is filtered and chlorinated, and enters the pool at a comfortable temperature of 39C (103F). The cool pool temperature is 29C (84F).

The soothing mineral-rich warm water of Radium Hot Springs and the stunning Rocky Mountain scenery combine to relax tired muscles and return peace of mind. After soaking in the pools, visitors can enjoy a massage or reflexology treatment in the spa. Of all the commercial hot springs in BC, Radium is the most welcoming to people with disabilities, with special bathing chairs available, and the pools and changing rooms all fully wheelchair accessible. Radium and the Upper Hot Springs are open to the public year-round. More on Radium Hot Springs Resort.

Radium Hot Springs is the perfect spot to enjoy great hiking and backpacking, rock climbing, horseback riding, fishing, river rafting, and superb wildlife viewing, and the golf courses nearby are simply world class. Winter offers cross-country, backcountry and alpine skiing, ice climbing, and outstanding downhill skiing at Panorama and Fairmont Hot Springs Ski Resort.

Continuing your hot springs tour south on Hwy 93/95 to Fairmont Hot Springs be sure to stop in the village of Invermere. Situated along the sandy shores of Windermere Lake, the community of Invermere offers a full spectrum of outdoor activities to visitors. Swim or windsurf in the morning, hike the trails in the afternoon or simply relax on the beach and enjoy the breathtaking mountain scenery.

Lussier Hot Springs
The wilderness Lussier Hot Springs are located near the western boundary of Whiteswan Lake Provincial Park. Whiteswan forestry Road climbs steadily from Hwy 93/95, entering Lussier Gorge, where a maintained walking trail leads down to a set of four delightful rock pools alongside the Lussier River.

The mineral water enters the first pool at a maximum temperature of 43C (110F), before gravity feeding down to the lower pools. The bottom pool alongside the Lussier river offers the coolest water, at about 34C (94F) in summer. The rock pools can accommodate several people at a time. They are popular during summer and tend to be crowded on weekends, except early in the morning. Clear your mind by bounding out of the higher pool into the frigid creek water!

A change room/toilet is located at the parking lot. Alcohol, dogs, and garbage are not permitted at the springs, and bathers must wear bathing suits. Lussier Hot Springs are non-commercial, and regular patrols are made by Provincial Park Rangers. Visitors are asked to please help keep this wildland hot springs clean. The park is open year round unless inaccessible due to weather conditions, especially during the off-season. More on Lussier Hot Springs.

Ram Creek Hot Springs
From Lussier, you can reach Ram Creek Hot Springs by way of back roads in approximately 45 minutes. Alternatively, you can travel to Skookumchuk and watch for the sign to Premier Lake. Head up Premier Lake Road and pass the turnoff to Premier Lake after 8 km. Continue travelling straight, now on the gravel Sheep Creek Road North. Following the main road for approximately 12 km, the road curves right and up the hill. There is room to park on the left hand side. You will see hot springs trickling towards the road, and a path up a slope to the springs, which are located in an ecological reserve. T
he luke warm Ram Creek Hot Springs are clear and odourless, with an average temperature range from 30C to 35C (86F to 95F). The pools are not accessible by vehicle during the winter months - snowmobile or cross-country skis required.

Dewar Creek Hot Springs
Drive 38.1 km on St. Mary Forestry Road west from Highway 95A at Marysville. The turnoff to Dewar Creek Road is 500 metres beyond the prominent White Creek bridge. Avoid the left turn on to the signed West Fort St. Mary River Road. Turn right (north) on to Dewar Creek Road, continue 22.7 km to the end of the road, and park in a large cleared area. Hike approximately 9 km on a forested horse trail, which can be muddy and indistinct in places.

The range of wilderness experiences offered through the BC Rockies is both exhilarating and diverse. Hot springs, alpine meadows, spectacular scenery, wildlife observation, and unparalleled photography are among the many reasons to visit the Canadian Rocky mountains in British Columbia.

Hot Springs in Greater Vancouver & Coast Mountain Region
Map of Vancouver, Coast & Mountains

Harrison Hot Springs
The Harrison Hot Springs form the centrepiece of a luxury hotel resort. The pools at the resort are for hotel guests only, but there is a public pool one block east of the hotel. The large, wonderfully warm public soaking pool has cooled hot spring water pumped into it.

The mineral rich hot springs at Harrison were originally used by the Salish Coast Natives who revered them as a "healing place", arriving by canoe to benefit from their rejuvenating waters. The minerals waters are said to bring relief to sufferers of rheumatism and arthritis through the 8 minerals present in the water, which averages 1,300 parts per million of dissolved mineral solids, one of the highest concentrations of any mineral spring.

There are two hot springs at the south end of Harrison Lake, the Potash, with a temperature of 40C (120F), and the Sulphur, with a temperature of 65C (150F). The Harrison Hot Springs resort boasts 2 indoor and 3 outdoor mineral pools. The indoor sitting pool is cooled to a temperature of 38-40C (100-103F), an ideal temperature for promoting the relief of general aches and stress, and the larger indoor pool is maintained at a temperature of 32C (90F).

The outdoor pools have been built in a setting complete with cascading waterfall, rock formations, and plants to simulate a typical West Coast setting. The mountains rising in the background complete a scene of bewitching beauty. In the outside adult swimming pool the hot spring waters are piped from the source and cooled to 32-35C (90-95F). For alternatively able people, there is a second outdoor hot springs pool, also kept at 35C (95F), with a gently sloping ramp that provides access to the pool, and a bench that follows the edges inside the pool.

The Harrison Hot Springs resort operates all year round, with the peak season from June through September. Resort guests can enjoy the pools 22 hours per day. More on Harrison Hot Springs Resort.

Harrison Hot Springs is a resort town with recreation and health at the forefront. There's swimming, canoeing, fishing, boating and windsurfing on nearby Harrison Lake. Sailboards and bikes are available for rent, and hiking trails are nearby. Harrison Hot Springs is fronted by a long stretch of municipal beach so perfect for building sand castles that the annual World Championship Sand Sculpture Competition is held here every September.

Meager Creek Hot Springs
Visitors seeking to rejuvenate their soul should venture out to Meager Creek Hot Springs, tucked away in the Coast Mountains near Pemberton, northwest of Vancouver.

The Japanese-style hot springs, in a natural outdoor setting, offer three natural rock baths, a self-composting toilet, and a change room. The springs are maintained by Recreation Sites and Trails BC, with a nominal entrance fee. The day-use only Meager Creek is a favourite spot for residents of southwest BC. Clothing is optional. Primitive no-service camping is available nearby at the Upper Lillooet Campsite, and a serviced campsite is planned for the future.

The Meager Creek is one of the most unstable valleys in BC, and has been the site of a number of dangerous landslides, normally during heavy rains or soon after a serious deluge. The site was easily accessible by road from Vancouver and Whistler, but unfortunately the gravel forest road to the site was washed out during severe flooding in 2003 and again in 2010. There is currently no road access to the site, and the Meager Creek Hot Springs are closed indefinitely. More on Meager Creek Hot Springs.

Skookumchuck Hot Springs/St. Agnes Well Hot Springs
Skookumchuck Hot Springs, also known as St. Agnes Well Hot Springs, are set in beautiful natural surroundings next to the Lillooet River, southeast of Pemberton and Lillooet Lake, on the historic Harrison Lillooet Gold Rush Trail.

The Skookumchuck Hot Springs are open year, and can be busy on summer weekends as St. Agnes Well is a popular weekend destination for Vancouver residents. Early morning is normally the best time for for a good soak. There is a private campground, shelters, and soaking tubs available to the public. A user fee is charged.

The undeveloped hot springs were previously owned by the Goodwin Purcell and then the Tretheway family, who sold it to the Federal Government in 2008 with the proviso that the land be held in trust for the Inshuck-ch Nation (Port Douglas, Skatin and Samaquam bands) until land claim negotiations with the province are completed. The campground and hot spring are operated and maintained by a private contractor.

The Skookumchuck Hot Springs are located about 35 miles (56 km) south of the community of Mount Currie, on the original Cariboo Wagon Road. From the logging road that parallels the Lillooet River, turn west at the BC Hydro tower 682. This narrow gravel road leads to the campsite and the hot springs. The road is very rough, with very large potholes. Access is difficult in winter due to the heavy snow conditions. More on Skookumchuck Hot Springs / St. Agnes Well.

Hot Springs in Northern BC and Haida Gwaii
Map of Northern British Columbia
Map of Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands)

Liard Hot Springs, North East BC

Liard River Hotsprings Provincial Park
Photo: Kathleen Anderson Smith
One of the best stops on the entire Alaska Highway is the fabulous Liard River Hot Springs, located in the Liard River Hotsprings Provincial Park north of Muncho Lake. Relaxation seeps into your body as you ease into the second largest hot spring in Canada. There are two hot springs at Liard, with water temperatures ranging from 42-52 C (107-126F). The nearest is the Alpha pool, and half a mile beyond that is Beta pool, which is larger and deeper, and is likely to have few other people there.

The hot springs complex is of national ecological significance and is well known for its natural setting in a lush boreal spruce forest. A boardwalk that leads to the hot spring pools passes through a warm water swamp and boreal forest that supports rich and diverse plant communities, as well as mammal and bird species. Watch for moose feeding in the warm water swamps. Due to the lush plant life influenced by the warmth of the springs, the area was originally known as the "Tropical Valley". Unlike most other thermal springs in Canada, Liard River Hot Springs does not flow directly into a nearby river or creek, but into an intricate system of swamps. Due to the continual inflow of warm water, the swamps never freeze in winter, despite being extremely shallow and located at a latitude of nearly 60 north.

The first written recording of the hot springs on the Liard River was made in 1835 by Robert Campbell of the Hudsons Bay Company. Following Campbells exploration, the Liard River was used as a trading route to the Yukon, but was abandoned in 1870 as the rapids along the upper Liard River were too treacherous.

This is one of the few provincial campgrounds along the Alaska Highway that remains open all year round, and with good reason. Even in the depths of winter, which lasts eight months here, the hot springs provide relief to weary Alaskan bound travellers and adventurers after a long day on the road. It would be crazy to bypass this natural phenomenon without popping. The park is such a popular stopover for tourists that the campground fills up early each day during the summer months. The park has a day-use/picnic area and offers campsites with fairly rustic facilities. There are two lodges close to the hot springs. More on Liard Hot Springs.

Caution: Beware of bears, even in areas where groups of campers are bathing. If there are warning signs posted about bears, please heed them!!

Mount Layton Hot Springs
Mount Layton Hot Springs is reputed to be the second largest hot spring in North America and the third largest in the world. Visitors and locals enjoy the therapeutic value of the natural non-sulphur mineral water, which is treated with an ozone system, the first by a public pool in Canada.

There are four therapeutic pools and waterslides. The Main Pool (temperature 30C/90F) has a large swimming area, a diving pool, and a roped off wading pool for the younger guests. Relief from rheumatism, arthritis, and skin ailments may be provided by a soak in the therapeutic mineral water in the Hot Tub pool (41C/105F).

Features enjoyed by children and thrill seekers include the indoor high-rise Splashdown Slides (30C/90F), the Cannonball Drop, the Turtle waterslides (32C/93F) for younger children, and the UFO water playground water fountain park. The two outdoor slides empty into a large wading pool.

Mount Layton Hot Springs is a family oriented resort located on 1,000 acres of farmland at Lakelse Lake. After your soothing soak, visitors can stroll about the working farm and see and pet some of the farm animals that include donkeys, goats, sheep, and ducks, or take a 20-minute walk through lush forest to beautiful Lakelse Lake, with the opportunity to view local wildlife and birds. More on Mount Layton Hot Springs.

Also on site at Mount Layton Hot Springs are a motel, lounge, and a restaurant with banquet facilities. Camping is also available at the popular campground at Lakelse Lake Provincial Park.

Iskut River Hot Springs
Extremely hot water weeps out of a rocky embankment on the west bank of the Iskut River. Several springs are present but no pools are available for bathing. The Iskut River Hot Springs, in the traditional territory of the Tahltan First Nation, are protected by the Iskut River Hot Springs Provincial Park. The small 4-hectare park is located approximately 100 km south of the community of Iskut, 15 km northeast of Bob Quinn and 6 km west of the Stewart Cassiar Highway 37. Access to the park is very limited. Foot access is difficult and there is no developed trail. Helicopter and boat access are possible.

Hotspring Island, Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands)

Hotsprings Island, Haida Gwaii (formerly the Queen Charlotte Islands). Photo: Parks Canada
Hotspring Island (Gandla'kin) is one of the more popular destinations in Haida Gwaii, the former Queen Charlotte Islands. Hotspring Island is located off the east coast of Moresby Island in the kayaking playground of Gwaii Haanas National Park, and is accessible only by kayak, boat or floatplane. Nothing is more idyllic than relaxing in a hot spring or hot pool on Hotspring Island and watching a pod of orcas swim past. There are at least a dozen springs and seeps on Hotspring Island, with three spring-fed natural hot tubs carved into volcanic rock.

A popular and adventurous way to visit Hotsprings Island is to embark on multi-day paddling adventure that uses a comfortable mothership to launch daily kayaking explorations into the peaceful wilderness wonder of Gwaii Haanas. These ecotours allow visitors to experience spectacular natural ecosystems, unique Haida culture, ancient Haida village sites, and awesome wilderness kayaking. To complete your rejuvenation, you get to nourish the body, mind and spirit in the natural hot springs on Hotspring Island.

Gwaii Haanas National Park is administered jointly by Parks Canada and the Haida Nation, and Hotspring Island is one of five areas in the park supervised by Haida watchmen. Camping is not permitted on Hotspring Island, and the island is closed to pets. When you are all soaked out, and ready to face life in paradise again, spend some time exploring the beach and enjoy the vista of Juan Perez Sound and the San Christoval Mountains. More on Hotspring Island.

Haida Gwaii, formerly the Queen Charlotte Islands, is wild and beautiful, embodying everything that is ancient and mystical about the West Coast. Impossible not to marvel at, and revel in, this is Haida Gwaii, arguably one of the most beautiful and diverse landscapes in the world. Haida Gwaii is about 60 miles (100 km) off the mainland, and are made up of about 150 islands.

Hot Springs on Vancouver Island

Map of Vancouver Island

Hot Springs Cove

Hot Springs Cove
Hot Springs Cove is a splendid hot spring still enjoyable in its natural state, located in Maquinna Provincial Park in the remote northern end of Clayoquot Sound. The boiling spring water bubbles up from deep in the earth and cascades down a small cliff into a series of natural layered rock pools, cooled by the incoming Pacific Ocean surf, each pool slightly cooler than the one above it. At high tide the surf surges up into the two lower pools creating a unique blend of hot and cool water. This tidal action also flushes the pools twice daily, so they are always noticeably clean. The spring water is very hot (47 degrees Celcius, 117 degrees Fahrenheit), and is clear with just a faint smell and taste of sulphur.

For the few that can stand the intense heat, a natural shower underneath the waterfalls is simply awesome! Let your tensions evaporate with the steam, at any time of the year. Rejuvenate your soul in these wonderfully scenic surroundings. Soaking in the rocky pools with a mountain rising overhead is a magical experience.

This soothing, natural wonder is open year-round and is accessible only by air or by sea (one-hour water taxi ride from Tofino). The hotsprings are reached by an easy hike on a 2-km attractive wooden boardwalk trail from the dock. A selection of transport packages is offered out of Tofino, combining aerial sightseeing, camping, whale watching and kayaking with the magical experience of a mineral steam bath surrounded by old-growth rain forest.

Hot Springs Cove is a refreshing stop for kayakers paddling through the Flores and Vargas Islands, and for those seeking a less strenuous visit, accommodation can be sought at a nearby lodge operated by the Hesquiat First Nations.

Guests of the lodge are permitted access to the two-mile, well-marked, wilderness trail to Tsamata Beach, to spend time strolling through the uncut forest and exploring the undisturbed shoreline. There are huge ancient cedars, towering Douglas firs, and spruces, some draped with Spanish moss. The air is thick and humid, and everything is lush, damp, green and growing.

Hot Springs Cove is a very popular attraction on the west coast, so a visit during fall and winter will provide more privacy. The mineral water sustains numerous micro-organisms that could affect your eyes, ears and throat, and protective footwear is recommended in the rock pools - rubber-soled aquashoes are best. Bathing suits are not always worn.

Wilderness, backcountry or walk-in camping is allowed, but no facilities are provided. Camping is not permitted on the peninsula portion of the park where the hot springs are located. Wilderness camping is permitted in the remainder of the park. A private campground, operated by the Hesquiat First Nation, is located just north of the government dock. More on Hot Springs Cove.

Ahousat Hot Springs
Tofino provides access to a second, cooler spring at Ahousat Hot Springs, located on the shores of Matilda Inlet in the Gibson Marine Provincial Park, on the south side of Flores Island. Ahousat Hot Springs is a natural warm spring, considered to be of therapeutic value, that bubbles up into a concrete tank. The spring water is clear and tasteless, with just a faint smell of sulphur, and has a maximum temperature of 25 degrees Celcius (77 degrees Fahrenheit).

A non-maintained historic route connects the warm springs to the broad sandy beaches at Whitesand Cove. This route once provided access to a lifesaving telegraph line and an old homestead.

Wilderness, backcountry or walk-in camping is allowed, but no facilities are provided. Reservations are not accepted at this Gibson Marine Provincial Park, and all campsites are on a first-come, first-served basis. The park and hotspring lies in the traditional territory of the Ahousat First Nations, and is only accessible by air or by boat from Tofino. Water taxis from Tofino and Ahousat offer service to the park.

Wolves have been known to frequent campsites - please ensure that all food and items smelling of food, as well as any loose items, are stored out of reach of wildlife. Food must not be offered or made available to wildlife - to do so is a violation of the Park Act.

Gibson Marine Park, immediately south of the Nuu-chah-nulth community of Ahousat, also provides access to the 'Walk the Wild Side' trail, a developed route with boardwalk sections that extends 10 km from Ahousat to the top of Mount Flores. Most of the route follows sandy beaches and trails cut across headlands to join with the next beach. The trail can be accessed from any of the beaches in Gibson Marine Park. More on Ahousat Hot Springs.

Visitors come from around the world to explore Clayoquot Sound, and Flores Island is one of the most popular destinations for kayakers, who can find ample opportunities for camping and wildlife viewing from the Islands beautiful sandy shores.

Circle Tours
See the best of BC when you embark upon one of the many circle tours that take in Vancouver Island, the Discovery Coast, the Sunshine Coast, the interior winelands or the remote Northern British Columbia.

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