Soak It Up: Lava Hot Springs

Photo by Ann Yearsley
Soak up the healing waters. Frolic in an Olympic-size pool and water park. Zip through the air in an aerial adventure park. Then, let your body be pampered with a spa treatment. If this sounds like your idea of an ideal family vacation, load up the car and head to the Southern Idaho town of Lava Hot Springs.
Begin at the Lava Hot Springs Hot Pools ( and find out why people have been coming to soak in these waters for hundreds of years. More than 2 million gallons of Sulphur-free mineral-laden water bubbles from underground springs each day, filling the pools—constantly refreshing the waters before flowing into the Portneuf River. The pools are open all year. They range in temperature between 102 and 112 degrees, and a cold-water deck shower refreshes between dips.
When it’s time for more raucous fun in the water, head to the Lava Hot Springs Olympic Pool. Here, in the summer, you can enjoy an Olympic AAU World-Class Swimming Pool with a 33-foot high diving tower for showing off your diving form, along with two curly waterslides and two 60-foot speed slides. For year-round family fun, the Indoor Aquatic Center has an Aqua Climb climbing wall, Water Basketball, Portneuf Kiddie Cove and a natural hot pool. 
Dry off and take to the sky at the Lava Zipline Adventure park ( Your guides will pick you up downtown in a big green army truck and drive you to the course in their private canyon. Year-round, you can zipline across the scenic canyon, challenge yourself on the high ropes course, a geodesic dome and climbing wall. You can stay tucked neatly inside your comfort zone or soar to new heights. As you might expect, a town known for its healing waters is also home to spa resorts offering relaxing and therapeutic treatments as well as natural hot pools. You can find them at
Find more Lava Hot Springs attractions and dining options at