South Carolina is known for its warm weather, sunny skies, southern charm, and amazing beaches. If you’re planning on spending time in this well-rounded state, you may be curious about other ways you can chill out, unwind, and spend time outdoors.
Hot springs are unique natural wonders that make for unforgettable experiences, beautiful sites, and plenty of relaxation. For those in South Carolina, you may be wondering if these mineral pools even exist, and how you can find them so you too can enjoy all they have to offer.
If so, keep reading to learn all about the hot springs in South Carolina and other nearby states.
Are There Actually Any Hot Springs in South Carolina?
To address the question that probably brought you to this article, unfortunately, there aren’t really any hot springs in South Carolina. In fact, there are very few sources of geothermally heated mineral water throughout the Eastern U.S.
But, not to worry, although they aren’t your typical “natural outdoor hot tub” bodies of water, the state is home to an abundance of springs that many communities were founded upon.
Also, if you’re able to road trip around other nearby southern states, you’ll find plenty of hot springs in places like North Carolina and Georgia. So, if you’ve been eager to dip your toes into natural hot springs, you’ll still have many opportunities to do so!
Listed below, you’ll find some of our favorite springs in South Carolina along with hot springs in other southern states so you can, hopefully, take a detour to experience this incredible phenomenon.
Natural Springs in Southern South Carolina
Boiling Spring, which used to be an actually hot spring in South Carolina, is found in Spartanburg County and has played a major role in the origin and development of this local city.
Boiling Springs, now named Boiling Spring, used to be home to two separate natural springs in South Carolina, just a couple hundred feet apart. Back in the 1700s, the springs were of great interest to both locals and tourists and had people traveling for miles to watch the water shoot up into the air, like a geyser.
Over the next couple hundred years, the geyser slowly diminished, but the water remained boiling until about 1990. Unfortunately, now, the water here is no longer hot, but it’s still a popular spot for those who live nearby and those visiting.
Found in the city of Aiken, Coker Springs is another place you’ll find a natural spring in South Carolina. This spot has been a fresh drinking water source since prehistoric times, and English settlers also used to rely on it hundreds of years ago.
Aiken was developed around 1835, and during this time the spring was the primary water source for the city’s residents. A spring house was also placed around it to mark the location and protect the source from the elements.
If you go to visit this South Carolina spring today, you’ll get to see what remains of the ages-old Greek-style spring house along with signs and plaques that denote the importance of this historical site. It’s been listed in the National Register of Historic Places since 1978 and is a must-see for anyone looking to explore South Carolina’s natural springs.
Natural Springs in Northern South Carolina
God’s Acre Healing Springs
God’s Acre Healing Springs can be found about two hours outside of Charleston. These natural springs in South Carolina have been the source of folklore and tales shared throughout centuries. For anyone who is a lover of history and historical sites, this is the spot for you.
Throughout time, Native Americans and others who have lived near it found this South Carolina spring to be sacred because they believed it had the ability to heal those who were in need. It holds endless tales of helping soldiers recover from battle wounds, especially during the American Revolution.
Today, people travel thousands of miles just to explore God’s Acre Healing Springs. This spring in South Carolina continues to be held in a sacred light by locals. You’ll find them in Blackville, South Carolina, where you’ll find a paved sidewalk that takes you, and any others looking to experience its magic, straight up to the water.
Moody Spring, much like God’s Acre, is full of rich history and local folk tales. Stories claim that the ghost of a hitchhiker sits and waits for rides along the road near this spring in South Carolina (more specifically, in the Sumter National Forest).
If you’re looking for a peaceful place to sit outside and get fresh air, Moody Spring is not to be missed. You’ll find benches to relax on while you sip on the water that flows from the rock. The spring water flows quickly, at a rate of almost two gallons per minute, and you’ll be shocked by how refreshing natural water can taste.
For anyone who is road-tripping around South Carolina or finds themselves along the mountain-side roads in Oconee County, make sure to plan for a stop this South Carolina spring.
Williamston Mineral Spring Park
Another natural spring in South Carolina is Williamston Mineral Spring Park. As its name suggests, you’ll find this spot in the town of Williamston, which is named after West Allen Williams who discovered the spring on his property in the 1800s.
Much like God’s Acre, Williams believed this spring had healing properties that allowed him to gain from his discovery. Once it was advertised to the public for its potentially magical capabilities, around 1845, it became a hot spot for locals and tourists, alike.
A few years later, a boarding house, cabins, railroads, and even a university began building around this natural spring in South Carolina, completely changing the dynamic of this city.
Now you’ll find a park and many annual events held around the spring that people travel from all over to experience. This South Carolina spring has been the catalyst for so many amazing developments throughout this town and is a must-see for anyone curious about the natural springs in South Carolina.
Natural Springs in North Carolina
Hot Springs, N.C.
Hot Springs, North Carolina, is the only place in the entire state where you can find geothermal hot springs. Luckily, these North Carolina hot springs consistently sit at a temperature perfect for a relaxing soak, making it an ideal choice for anyone hoping to get the full hot spring experience.
The water is heated by geothermal properties and has a high mineral content, making them a well-known place for healing. These hot springs were originally enjoyed by Native Americans (dating all the way back to 2,500 B.C.) who were eager to gain from these beneficial properties.
Now, a trip to Hot Springs, North Carolina, will provide you with unlimited access to these bodies of water, along with a range of lodging, recreation, dining, and shopping opportunities to enhance your stay.
Although there is only one place to experience geothermal hot springs in North Carolina, this city lives up to its name and makes the journey well worth it.
Hot Springs in Georgia
Thundering Spring is an amazing Southern hot spring and is found in Molana, Georgia. This hot spring is heated from the center of it and it’s sourced by a nearby small stream.
In the past, there used to be a deck that was built for swimming and bathing in this natural hot spring. However, today the hot spring itself is too dangerous for swimming. In fact, Its name actually comes from the unusual sound that the gas bubbles make as they grow and pop from the heat.
If you’ve been eager to swim around southern hot springs, don’t be discouraged! There are plenty of cooler waters nearby that are popular for dipping and swimming and won’t cause you any harm.
Warm Springs is probably the most popular and well-known hot spring in Georgia. It’s found within the F.D. Roosevelt State Park, just south of Atlanta.
Warm Springs became popular for its mineral-rich, naturally heated, waters. It also reached a level of fame with Franklin D. Roosevelt made a visit a few years before his presidency. After discovering that the springs helped soothe his nerve pain from a nerve disorder, FDR soon established a home in the area and continued to promote the therapeutic nature of the waters.
Warm Springs sits at a temperature of about 88 degrees Fahrenheit and is the perfect place for a soothing dip for anyone looking to have a southern hot springs experience.
Listed as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Georgia, Radium Springs is a popular destination known for its beauty and recent developments. This southern hot spring is open year-round and features pools filled with naturally heated water full of beneficial and healthy minerals.
Radium Springs Gardens continuously pumps 70,000 gallons per minute of clear water that comes from a nearby cave. In the past, this spot became so popular that the Radium Springs Casino was created. Although it no longer is running, you can still take a walk through history and see where it once stood.
At this southern hot spring spot, you’ll also find plenty of greenery draping over walkways, benches, and bridges along with crystal-clear waters, beautiful terraces, and newly renovated gazebos.
For anyone looking to spend a quiet afternoon outdoors surrounded by nature, an amazing natural spring, and more, Radium Springs should definitely be on your itinerary.
Wrapping up Springs in and Near South Carolina
Although you may not have found the answer you were hoping for when it comes to discovering hot springs in South Carolina, hopefully, you’re still excited to explore a range of natural and unique bodies of water throughout the southern states.
From sites full of American history to warm mineral baths and healing waters, there’s so much to learn when it comes to hot springs in the South.
Looking to discover other hot springs throughout the U.S.? Check out our post on the best hot springs in Arizona for all you need to know!