Indian Hot Springs in Idaho Springs is rooted in a history that goes deeper than the mining days that made the surrounding town famous. Before the gold rush, the Ute and Arapahoe tribes were divided by a creek that those people knew fed the waters of the Great Spirit. The hot springs were on common grounds before the white man took control and developed what is now Idaho Springs.

Once attracting the likes of Frank and Jesse James, Walt Whitman and the Roosevelts, Indian Hot Springs is now the go-to soaking spot for the Interstate 70 populations and a popular stop for vacationers. A curving sunroof hangs over a swimming pool that the resort likens to “a tropical paradise,” with eye-catching plants and banana and palm trees. The family-friendly pool is heated to 90 to 100 degrees. A combo deal or separate admission price gets visitors into the more intimate caves, with walk-in tubs that are gender-specific.

Overnighters can reserve original rooms built in 1905 or up the luxury by staying at The Inn. The Lodge offers more modern frills, while the cabins by Soda Creek are the rustic choices. Specialized massages at the spa promise optimal relaxation.

Rules: Clothing required in the pool, optional in the caves. Kids 16 and younger not allowed in the caves. Pets not allowed. No food near waters, but beverages in plastic bottles allowed (no alcohol).

Address: 302 Soda Creek Road, Idaho Springs, 80452

Hours: Pool 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, caves 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. daily

Contact: 303-989-6666 for reservations,

Getting there: Heading west on Interstate 70, take exit 240 for Colorado 103 and turn right onto 14th Avenue. Go half a mile to the right turn for Soda Creek Road and follow to resort.

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