[After Festival] Wildwood Retreat & Hot Springs

Do you know Gila Hot Springs?

In a campground deep in the mountains of New Mexico, there is the hot springs.

I felt the same kind of tasteful atmosphere as a secluded Japanese Ryokan’s open-air bath.

Perhaps the reason may be in an unlikely place.

Comfortable Campground

It is two hours and a half’s drive from El Paso to Silver City, where is known as a former mining town.

From the town, you need to drive a steep winding road for additional an hour and a half.

You will escape from the desert area and get to Gila Hot Springs, where is located at the riverside of the Gila River, streaming in the rich natural environment.

It is not a town, but there are several campgrounds for hillwalking.


Wildwood is one of the closest one to the source of the spring, and is a campground with a rustic cabin.

A campground in the mountains is often unclean, but it is not the case with here.

There are water washing rest rooms, clean shower rooms, and even Wi-Fi.

Like a Ryokan’s open-air baths deep in the mountains

There are two open-air baths, and you can soak at any hours.

Both of them are mixed baths; one is clothing required and the other is clothing optional.

Clothing Required

Here is clothing required.

Behind the three small tubs, there is a big one and hot spring water is gradually chilled in each tub.

Clothing Optional

Here is clothing optional.

There are three tubs with difference in height, and spring water is gradually chilling.

The depth of the tubs is as shallow as Japanese typical tubs, and that is probably why the water temperature is in a fine balance!

You can enjoy all the tubs filled with hot, normal, and tepid water.

Water Outlet

The spring water with a smooth texture is combined with the smell of virgin forest, which provides relaxation of extra quality.

When I looked up, I found a lantern, which is used for festivals’ decoration in Japan.


A few blue lanterns in the premises began softly shinning as the day ebbs.

They created nostalgic feel just like after a festival.

Perhaps that may be why I got the same feeling as the one I had in a secluded Japanese Ryokan’s open-air bath.


😆 Pros

Perfect free-flowing tubs filled with hot, normal, and tepid water

😥 Cons


Wildwood Retreat & Hot Springs, Gila National Forest, New Mexico, USA
Walk-in YES
Lodging YES
Official Website YES

Related hot springs

It is ten minutes’ walk from Wildwood.

Gila Hot Springs Campground

Gila Hot Springs Campground, Gila National Forest, New Mexico, USA

This campground is more primitive and cheaper ($6 per night).

You need to bring a bath suit to the three open-air tubs.

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