Experience America’s first spa at Berkeley Springs State Park
George Washington was an advocate for the area’s therapeutic mineral waters
Relax and rejuvenate your body and mind at Berkeley Springs State Park, home of America’s first spa. The day-use park in the middle of Historic Berkeley Springs is known for its Roman baths and public swimming pool sourced from a clear mountain spring.
George Washington bathed here
Native Americans were the first to discover Berkeley Springs—some traveling from as far away as Canada to bathe in the therapeutic waters. When white settlers moved into the area in the early 1700s, they learned of the use and value of the springs from the Indian tribes, and word began to spread through the settlements of the east.
Among one of the earliest proponents of the springs was a young surveyor and future president named George Washington. He camped there for the night while surveying the western limits of Lord Thomas Fairfax’s lands, noting in his diary, “March 18th, 1748, We this day called to see Ye Fam’d Warm Springs.”
Washington would become a repeat visitor to the springs, and it was largely through his efforts that its fame as a health spa grew throughout the colonies. Today, visitors to the park can view a replica of the scooped-out stone pool where Washington bathed. The town of Berkeley Springs even hosts an annual George Washington’s Bathtub Celebration honoring the country’s only outdoor monument to presidential bathing.
“The park is clean, inviting and well-kept. There is an atmosphere of family and a lot of activity with the pool, the springs and the ability to see where George Washington bathed. There is no fee to enter the park, nor any fee to dip your feet in the spring water and collect water from the pipes to take home with you. The water is refreshing to say the least.”– MicheleR, TripAdvisor Reviewer from Nottingham, Md.
Enjoy a soak and a massage
Located only about 90 minutes from the D.C.-Baltimore metro area, Berkeley Springs makes an ideal getaway for travelers looking to unwind and enjoy some downtime in the picturesque mountains of Almost Heaven, West Virginia.
The historic Old Roman Bathhouse has private bath facilities that can accommodate up to six adults. Individuals, couples, or families can reserve a 30-minute soak in mineral water heated to 102 degrees. The bathhouse is currently under renovation and expected to reopen this fall. In the meantime, the Main Bathhouse will open an hour early on weekends and holidays for bath-only appointments.
The bathhouse also has a whirlpool bath with jets and a sauna. Additional spa services include therapeutic massage, hot stone massage, couples’ massage and aquatic bodywork. A full list of services is available here. Treat yourself or your traveling companion a soak and a massage. You’ll be saying, “Ahhhh!” in no time!
“My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed this park. The Roman Bath House is a must-do. These are private baths, where you are in a small room, no frills, but let me tell you my husband and I fell so rejuvenated after half hour sitting in this mineral water. Another ‘must-do’ we recommend is getting a massage at their spa. OMG — best massage I’ve ever had! So good that we are booking another massage today before we leave to go home!— Delta Dawn, TripAdvisor Reviewer from Leonardtown, Md.
Overnight accommodations are available at Cacapon Resort State Park, which has a full-service lodge, guest cabins, 20 miles of hiking trails and an 18-hole golf course.
Voted USA Today’s Top Ten Best Small Town, historic Berkeley Springs is known for its eclectic array of boutique shops, art galleries and locally sourced restaurants.
Enjoy one of the best “treat yourself” state parks this fall! Here are your next steps:
- Plan a trip
Look at the weather, check out the spa menu and plan a relaxing getaway to Berkeley Springs.
- Book your stay
Berkeley Springs State Park may not have lodging but nearby Cacapon Resort State Park has cozy lodge rooms, cabins and campsites for all your lodging needs.
- Make memories that last a lifetime
Share this relaxing getaway with someone special and make memories that last for years to come.