I’ve been calling Virginia home for the last 6 years, and I just keep finding more and more places that I love. I have shared about my love for Williamsburg, and DC, but now I can also say I love Hot Springs, Virginia.
Hot Springs Virginia Travel Guide
Hot Springs is to the west of Charlottesville and north of Lynchburg. It’s actually just a few miles from West Virginia, through the lush drive of the Shenandoah Valley. I was actually taking so much video on the drive there, it was ridiculous, but the Shenandoah views are breathtaking. It actually ended up being VERY COLD, and snowed, even though it was April, and while that’s not necessarily the norm, everyone said, up in the mountains, it can definitely happen. So, check the weather before you go.
Hot Springs, Virginia is located in Bath County. The entire area is filled with “hot” “warm” and “healing” baths hence the name Bath County; because of it’s healing mineral waters. Hot, Warm and Healing Springs are the towns located inside Bath County, all just a few minutes apart. The area was immediately identified as a special city, and George Washington had the area commissioned for a resort in the 1750/60’s.
There’s tons of colonial history in the area. Thomas Jefferson visited The Omni Homestead, a resort we’ll talk about. And just down the road at the Falling Springs, Falls there is a waterfall that Jefferson visited. So, without further ado, here is my official Hot Springs, Virginia Travel Guide.
Falling Springs, Falls
Fallings Springs Falls is just about 10 miles outside Hot Springs, but worth the drive. The waterfall that used to naturally be over 200 feet, is only 80 feet today, as they have moved the water via a different path to help run the electric railways. There’s tons of places to pull over along the highway, for scenic views, and it’s worth stopping.
The Omni Homestead
The original resort was built in 1766. It has been renovated MANY TIMES over the centuries, but still has so much original charm. It’s currently under re-construction again. With only 1/4 of the rooms open in the resort. However, it is set to completely reopen next year, and I’m sure it will be beautiful.
I had the privilege of staying at the Omni Homestead (full detailed blog post to come). But overall, it was lovely. Hot Springs is the first “big town” after driving through a lot of very tiny towns in the mountains, and it makes such an impact. The resort is built around its colonial history. As well as the pro golfer, Sam Snead, who is said to be more decorated than Tiger Woods, who used to be the golf pro at the Homestead course. There’s tons of fine dining on site, as well as casual dining. There are daily indoor and outdoor activities, including a beautiful hike that takes you to some of the local rapids, and a smaller waterfall. As well as horseback riding, carriage rides, falconry exhibits, axe throwing, mini golf, golf, and more.
The Omni is filled with old charm luxury. The property is spread out over several miles, and you have to be shuttled to some of the amenities, like the golf course, local hikes, and more. The parking lot is a ways from the resort, so plan to valet when you arrive. All of the meals have the option to be ala carte, but a couple of the restaurants only have Prix Fixed menus, or buffets, at certain times. You can book a reservation on Open Table. Also, the restaurant on the Cascades by the Golf Course, is lovely, and worth the drive over, just for the views.
Jefferson’s is an on site restaurant at The Omni Homestead. It has swanky old school club vibes with velvet booths and beautiful decor. They have filet, duck, lobster, scallops and many more delicious options. Jefferson’s has a chef and pastry chef, and use tons of personalized touches. They share a kitchen with Jefferson’s Taphouse, where you can lounge, and sit with friends, while enjoying some of the same delicious foods, and of course drinks.
If you are a foodie, like me, then all of your dreams can come true. Every meal was amazing. The Omni HomeStead knows how to create a luxury experience.
Warm Springs Up Next
If you’re going to venture 4+ hours from home, like me, then you want to make sure and check out all the surrounding areas. Just about 5 minutes from the heart of Hot Springs, is the Warm Springs. You can visit the actual Springs in each town, but since it was snowing most of the trip, I stayed bundled up. Though it is said that they get up to 105 degrees, even when it’s cold out.
The Inn at Gristmill Square
Gristmill Square is a collection of Boutique Inns and Bed and Breakfasts in Warm Springs, VA. Located right next to City Hall, with tons of small town charm and very thoughtful vibes. They are run by Kate and John, who take immense pride in what they’ve built. They have 18 ( I think if I remember correctly) different Bed and Breakfast to choose from. I had the privilege of staying in the Turley Room, and it was darling.
Hot Breakfast with coffee or hot chocolate is brought to your room upon request between 8-10am. There is a farm-to-table restaurant next door, if you want to stay for dinner, and I definitely recommend you do. Outside, you’ll find a fire pit, where you can lounge with friends or family in the evenings. It was all so thoughtful and charming.
Located in the Gristmill Square is the Farm-to-Table Waterwheel Restaurant, with an actual Waterwheel onsite to match. They have beautiful and luxurious gourmet style food, while still having a low-key and personalized environment. There is a cellar located downstairs, where you can pick your own bottle of wine, if you prefer. You start the meal with homemade focaccia and honey butter that is to die for. And well clearly I ended the meal with creme brulee.
Other Honorable Mentions
I didn’t go to the French Restaurant, Les Cochons d’Or, but some friends I met on the hike, said it was lovely, and said they also served breakfast and lunch at Jackson River Cafe. I also got to try some wine Oakley Farm, that was delicious, and also heard that the Rock Roadhouse Winery is lovely too. There’s also a Music Center that has seasonal music events, so check the schedule and see if there’s something available when you’re visiting.
All in all, if you’re planning to visit Hot Springs, Virginia, you will not be disappointed. If you have a question drop it in the comments or find me on social