Set into the hills midway between Calistoga and Clear Lake, Harbin Hot Springs is a health spa inspired in equal measure by European and Native American hot spring traditions and Japanese onsen. Watsu, a type of water massage inspired by shiatsu, was started here and the many thermal pools are used for aquatic healing modalities — if that’s your jam. Warm, hot and cold plunge pools are just the beginning — Harbin has six additional pools at varying temperatures for relaxing, sweating, socializing, swimming and experiencing Watsu or other water-bound body work.
Significantly impacted by fire in 2015, Harbin Hot Springs is an on-going work in progress. Many former structures have been rebuilt and spaces reimagined to be a more integral part the natural world. The Dancing Bear Café ably stands in for a full-service restaurant and the Yoga Room remains a sacred space. Hiking trails have been restored and new trails have emerged.
Photo: Courtesy of Harbin Hot Springs