Agua Caliente County Park – Julian, California

Did you know that there’s a whole county park dedicated to hot springs? In fact, Agua Caliente County Park is the largest county-owned natural reserve in the state of California. It has more than 26 geothermal features and is one of the most famous spots for soaking in natural hot springs in the world. There are so many different hot springs at this park that it can be a little overwhelming.

Here’s your complete guide to all of them. This article will answer all your burning questions about hot springs in Agua Caliente County Park – Julian, California:

Agua Caliente County Park
Agua Caliente County Park

History

A desert paradise, Agua Caliente County Park can be found within the highly sought-after Anza Borrego Desert State Park. This park is known for its relaxing, all-natural mineral hot springs as well as its abundance of gorgeous hiking trails. It is the best possible vacation spot in California for nature lovers who wish to make a genuine connection with the natural world in a way that they have never done so before.

The Kumeyaay Indians were the first people to discover this place, which is known for its hot springs. They came to the area because of the wealth of water that the region had to offer. Juan Bautista de Anza, a Spanish explorer, was the one who came across the sea in 1775. The springs were given the name “Agua Caliente” at that time, which literally translates to “hot water” in Spanish.

Since that time, Agua Caliente has been drawing visitors from all over the world. It is a must-see location for anyone vacationing in San Diego County in quest of good times, pleasure, and refreshment because it is located roughly 100 miles from the city of San Diego.
Pools of Mineral-Rich Hot Spring Water

Mineral Hot Springs Pools

Hot spring pools Agua Caliente County Park – Julian, California
Agua Caliente County Park – Julian, California

The natural hot springs in Agua Caliente County Park are the primary draw for visitors to the park. There are three wonderful spring-fed alternatives available to pick from, including a jacuzzi that is located indoors, two spring-fed outdoor pools, one of which was designed exclusively for the entertainment of children, and an outdoor pool.

The indoor spa has temperatures that may reach up to 102 degrees Fahrenheit, and its design incorporates glass walls that provide stunning panoramas of the surrounding desert and mountains. Because the jets press against your skin and create an underwater massage that you won’t soon forget, this place will transport you to a world of tranquility unlike any other.

The routine that must be followed in order to take advantage of the hot springs in Agua Caliente County Park is one of the park’s many advantages. The indoor spa offers an adult-only hour each day, which is the ideal opportunity for clients aged 21 and older to relax without the presence of children in the immediate area. In addition, there are times that are exclusively dedicated for campers, which ensures that overnight guests have complete access to the spa and pools in a more secluded setting.

There are so many hot springs to find at the park, especially if you are interested in the ones suitable for a relaxing soak. There are also those that are better for water sports like scuba diving and kayaking. The best way to find them is to follow the trail that leads to the main swimming hole at the upper end of the park. If you are looking for the Hot Springs at the lower end of the park, follow the trail towards the Caballero Hot Springs and the trail will take you there.

Types of Hot Springs

There are 5 main types of hot springs at this park:

The Upper Hot Springs: These are the ones that are located at the upper end of the park. These hot springs are suitable for a relaxing soak, and they are also the best choice for people who are looking to photograph them.

The Lower Hot Springs: Located at the lower end of the park, these hot springs are best for water sports like scuba diving and kayaking. You can also lounge around in them, but you will likely get sprayed with water every now and then.

The Caballero Hot Springs: These hot springs are located between the upper and lower hot springs. They are best for water sports like scuba diving and kayaking, but you can also lounge around in them.

The Ano Nuevo Hot Springs: These hot springs are located at the west end of the park. They are the best choice for wildlife photographers who are hoping to get some great shots of California Seals who frequent this area.

The Volcanic Hot Springs: These hot springs are located at the east end of the park. These are the best choice for people who want to experience something unique and different, especially because the water here is extremely hot.

How to Enjoy the Hot Springs in Agua Caliente County Park?

Visiting the hot springs is, of course, the best way to enjoy them. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when visiting them.

– Wear appropriate clothing: While you can wear whatever you want when lounging around in the hot springs, you will have to wear a swimsuit when visiting the swimming holes.
– Stay hydrated: It is important to stay hydrated at all times, both inside and outside of the hot springs. As the water in the hot springs is usually warm, it is even more important to drink a lot.
– Keep your belongings safe: At some point during your visit, you might have to walk through a parking lot. Keep your belongings safe and close to your person so that you can protect them from theft.
– Keep wildlife in mind: Depending on when you visit, you might run into some wild animals at the hot springs. The best way to deal with this is to keep your distance and respect their space.

What to do in Agua Caliente County Park?

You will never run out of activities while visiting Agua Caliente County Park

Hiking

Agua Caliente Springs Park Hot Springs Hiking Camping
Agua Caliente Springs Park Hot Springs Hiking Camping

Those who are enthusiastic about hiking will value the fact that Agua Caliente covers a massive 910 acres and that each of those acres features a magnificent desert plan. It should come as no surprise that Agua Caliente is a hiker’s paradise given the abundance of acreage, canyons, and mountainous terrain to explore in the area.

Hikers that go across these wide regions will come across a stunning collection of wildflowers and succulents in the springtime, as well as luxuriant plant life all year round, such as Washington Palms and acacias.

Along the walk, you might come across some enormous wild animals, so you shouldn’t be startled if that happens. It is not unusual to come across a wide variety of animals in Agua Caliente County Park. These species can range from large horn sheep to coyotes and beyond.

Bring a picnic with you because there are many places where you may sit in the sunshine and take in the stunning vistas that are in front of you.

Camping

Agua Caliente County Park is well-known for its hot springs and the hiking paths that wind through the park; nevertheless, it is also renowned for the great camping opportunities that it provides. In point of fact, it is considered to be one of the “most popular” camping spots in all of San Diego County.

There are 140 campsites available to pick from within the park, some of which come equipped with full or partial hookups. Tent sites are also available for individuals who would like “be one with nature,” and huge caravan sites are available for those traveling in larger groups.

Not even a camper or RV? No issue. You have your choice of seven freestanding cabins at Agua Caliente, each measuring 320 square feet and outfitted with a table, climate controls, and two sets of queen-sized bed frames. Bear in mind that there will not be any mattresses or sheets provided for you; you will need to bring your own.

Tips for Visiting Agua Caliente County Park’s Hot Springs

Agua Caliente County Park is open year round, but there are some holidays when it is closed. If you plan to visit over a holiday, make sure to check the park’s website for hours of operation. Park admission is $10 per vehicle, and there is a $2 fee for each person who is 16 years of age and above.

You can also purchase an annual pass for $40, which is valid for the entire year. There are ways to save money at the park, including purchasing the senior or child’s admission pass, or taking advantage of special offers from the park’s website.

Final Words: Don’t miss out!

Agua Caliente County Park is an amazing place to visit, especially if you are interested in a relaxing hot springs getaway. It is one of the most famous spots for soaking in natural hot springs in the world. There are so many different hot springs at this park that it can be a little overwhelming. If you want to visit them, remember to bring your swimsuit, be prepared to hike a little bit, and stay hydrated. You won’t regret it.

Weather & 5-day forecast

Agua Caliente County Park is located in Julian, California and the weather is usually mild throughout the year. The average high temperature in Julian is 79 degrees Fahrenheit and the average low temperature is 55 degrees Fahrenheit. However, it is important to check the weather forecast before your visit as the weather can change quickly in this area.

Local information

Address: 39555 Great Southern Overland Stage Route1849, Julian, California 92036
GPS: 32.956481,-116.300713
Phone: 760-765-1188
Reservations: 877-565-3600
Season: Year-round
Website: sdparks.org/content/sdparks/en/park-pages/AguaCaliente.html

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