I’m a big fan of natural hot springs so when I heard about Mystic Hot Springs I knew I had to check it out.
Located in the rural central Utah town of Monroe near Richfield, Mystic Hot Springs is listed as the number one thing to do in Monroe by Trip Adviser with a 3.5 ranking. I wouldn’t consider the hot springs a destination like Glenwood Springs, Ouray, Lava Hot Springs, or even Crystal Hot Springs. To me it looks more like a funky roadside attraction where a Grateful Dead gathering broke down and set up camp. This makes it interesting!
Funky roadside attraction with a Grateful Dead vibe
We visited Mystic Hot Springs on a cold, overcast day in March. We were returning to St. George from a a business trip to Salt Lake City and decided to take the time to check it out. No one was around when we pulled in and it took a while to find someone to help us. The only other visitors were three girls from Alaska that were passing through on their way to the parks. We decided not to take a dip in the pools but instead tour the grounds and take the Alaska girls’ word of its therapeutic splendor. They really seemed to be enjoying the hot water, but the long road trip and camping along the way may have had something to do with it.
The water doesn’t have the rotten egg sulfur order you often get at other natural hot springs, which is a big plus, but the location is rather run down and in disrepair. Bathers soak in two hot springs pools and six bathtubs filled with hot springs water that are nestled in the orange and yellow travertine mounds.
If you go, a variety of lodging and restaurants can be found in nearby Richfield Utah.
In 1882, Thomas Cooper and his wife homesteaded the area on the east side of town where hot springs water emerged. They built a wood box to collect the water and offered it as a soaking pool. Later, around 1905, a building was erected. There was a dance floor, an indoor swimming pool, and many dressing rooms. Many people came from miles around by horse and buggy to enjoy soaking and dancing. In 1930 Farnsworth bought the hot springs. He was the leader of a band, and it became the house band. The slogan for the Monroe hot springs was, “the home of mirth and merriment”. The hot springs enjoyed many years of prosperity until around 1950. It was revitalized in the 1970s. The name was changed to Mystic Hot Springs in 1995.
“Producer/Director/Artist Mike Ginsburg was traveling in his bus back to Denver from the last Vegas Dead shows in 1995 when he stumbled into Mystic Hot Springs. He instantly realized that everything he was looking for was right there. Miraculously, he was able to purchase the resort. He’s been working there since 1996! He has used his artistic talent to add new soaking areas, restore pioneer cabins, promote many wonderful concerts, produce DVDs, create stunning lampwork glass jewelry, and bring a special energy to this wonderful place.” – mystichotsprings.com