Looking for tips for visiting La Gruta, San Miguel de Allende?
I’ve spent the day soaking in these rejuvenating hot springs. In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about La Gruta Spa.
San Miguel de Allende, Mexico is known for its colonial charm, modern food scene, and stunning architecture. But exploring the city may leave you looking for a way to relax and rejuvenate.
And what could be more relaxing than soaking in hot springs?
Nestled in the foothills of the nearby mountains, La Gruta hot springs offer visitors a chance to relax during their visit. The mineral-rich waters are said to have healing properties.
And after a day of sightseeing in this beautiful city, there’s nothing like soaking your cares away in one of these therapeutic pools.
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A Guide to La Gruta Spa
In this guide to La Gruta Spa, San Miguel de Allende I go into detail about the different pools and other amenities, the best time to visit, and how to get there including this horseback ride and hot springs tour.
Best Time to Visit La Gruta Spa
With its relatively mild climate, you can soak in San Miguel de Allende hot springs throughout the year.
If you had to pick, then the best time of year to visit is during the winter when temperatures drop in the evenings and into the mornings. However, I visited La Gruta Spa in August and the weather was still conducive for soaking in the hot springs.
The best time of day to visit La Gruta Spa is in the mornings before the hot springs become crowded. Try to avoid the weekends when tourists flood the city of San Miguel de Allende.
And if you can, the best day to visit La Gruta Spa is on a Wednesday since they drain and clean the pools Monday-Tuesday when they are closed.
How to Get to La Gruta, San Miguel de Allende
La Gruta Spa is located just under 20 minutes north of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.
The easiest way to get there is to drive the highway north out of town since there is parking in front of La Gruta hot springs.
Although a car isn’t required or necessarily recommended for visitors to San Miguel de Allende. So I’ve detailed three ways to get to La Gruta Spa without a car below.
Horseback and Hot Spring Tour
If you’re looking for a day of adventure and relaxation, this horseback and hot springs tour is the perfect way to spend a day in San Miguel.
You’ll ride through the countryside on horseback, passing through small villages and beautiful landscapes that you wouldn’t otherwise see.
After a homemade Mexican lunch, you’ll drive to the hot springs to soak in the thermal waters. La Gruta Spa is an excellent way to relax after a day on the trail.
And this tour is a great way to experience both. Lunch, entrance fee, and transportation are included.
How to Get to La Gruta By Taxi
If you decide to go on your own, the easiest way to get there is to take a taxi from San Miguel de Allende to La Gruta Spa. Expect to spend about 300 pesos each way.
However, you’ll need to arrange for the taxi to return to pick you up. The main issue with this plan is that you’ll need to decide how long you want to stay at the hot springs ahead of time. And you may end up feeling rushed to meet the taxi.
La Gruta Spa By Bus
Taking a bus from San Miguel de Allende to La Gruta Spa is by far the most economical option since it costs about 10 pesos per person.
And since the bus runs from 7 am to 5 pm, it’s even possible to arrive early in the morning, shortly after La Gruta opens.
The bus toward Atotonilco leaves roughly every hour from downtown San Miguel (see map), although the departure time is closer to 20 minutes past the hour.
You’ll want to tell the bus driver you are going to La Gruta Spa. You’ll be dropped off along the highway and need to carefully cross to get to La Gruta.
Getting back will require a bit of luck to catch the bus along with highway without a long wait.
But if you have the day free, I recommend walking to Atotonilco after soaking in the hot springs and taking the bus back to San Miguel from there. You can read more about that at the end of this post here.
Price of La Gruta, San Miguel de Allende
La Gruta Spa costs 250 pesos per person to enter. The entrance fee gives you access to the grounds for the day (7 am to 5 pm).
I recommend arriving soon after they open to avoid crowds and allow yourself to decide how long to stay. Keep in mind, La Gruta hot springs are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
La Gruta Hot Springs, Facilities, and Services
You could easily spend the entire day at La Gruta Spa. The grounds include several thermal pools of varying sizes and temperatures as well as a restaurant and a spa. In fact, La Gruta Spa topped the list of my favorite day trips from San Miguel de Allende.
La Gruta Hot Springs
As you walk into La Gruta hot springs, you’re greeted by fresh greenery and the first photo opportunity at a set of silver angel wings.
After changing and putting your things in a locker, there are several pools you can explore. Although I recommend you read the guide to the hot spring pools below so that you know ahead of time where you want to spend most of your time.
The Shallow Pool
As you walk towards the hot spring pools and to the right, the mid-sized pool is the first one you’ll encounter.
Its moderate temperature and shallow depth make it a great place to start soaking and allow your body to acclimate to the thermal waters.
This pool is mostly shaded and surrounded by lounge chairs. There are also a few cubbies to keep the belongings you don’t need to store in a locker.
The Deep Pool
The next pool on the right is my favorite La Gruta hot spring to soak in. Not only does this pool have the hottest thermal waters, but it’s also surrounded by tropical plants and flowers.
I thoroughly enjoyed watching the birds and butterflies flutter through the colorful flowers while I relaxed in the thermal waters.
This pool also features the most iconic part of La Gruta Spa – the tunnel and cave (see next).
The Tunnel and Cave (La Gruta)
At the far end of the deep pool is a rock tunnel that leads to La Gruta, the cave. It’s filled with clear blue hot spring water flowing from the cave.
The tunnel is also quite picturesque. So you may need to wait to pass through since people often stop at the opening to take pictures.
Once you do, you’ll be in the steamy cave which also has the hottest hot spring water.
Several times per day, water from the source of the hot spring is pumped into the cave. During this time, a short line forms to pass under the water source for a mini massage.
To get out of the cave, you can pass through the tunnel again or exit via the room on the right. It leads to an upper level with another pool that I imagine is only filled on the weekends.
The Kids’ Pool
The kids’ pool is located on the far side of La Gruta hot springs. It’s the largest but also coolest of all the thermal pools.
As a result, I didn’t spend any time in this pool. Although it’s great for families visiting La Gruta Spa.
Do you love hot springs? Make sure you read about Grutas Tolantongo, one of the most impressive cave and hot spring complexes in Mexico.
The Spa at La Gruta – Adelo
The relaxing features at La Gruta Spa aren’t limited to the hot springs. They also have massage therapists available at the on-site spa.
You can’t reserve ahead of time, so if you’re interested in having a massage at the spa, inquire when you arrive. Prices are based on the type of massage you choose as well as the length.
Restaurant at La Gruta Spa
Since no food or drinks (other than water) are allowed inside, La Gruta hot springs also include a restaurant. Prices are slightly elevated, as you’d expect in this environment.
And the food looked decent. Although, if you plan to visit Atotonilco after I would save your appetite.
On the streets just past the church are various stands that serve blue corn gorditas stuffed with your choice of stewed filling.
Other Facilities at La Gruta Hot Springs and Spa
Shortly after the entrance on the right are spacious lockers to put your valuables. To use the lockers a 50 peso returnable deposit is required. Keep in mind, you must return the key before they close at 5 pm and only cash is accepted.
There are changing rooms conveniently located next to the lockers. They are relatively clean and free to use.
Showers and Bathrooms
The main bathrooms are located just past the lockers. They were also kept fairly clean during our time at La Gruta Spa. It’s recommended that you shower before entering the hot springs.
La Gruta Spa surprisingly has free WiFi to use while you’re lounging. Not that I’d expect you’d want to stream videos or social media while you’re relaxing in the hot springs. But it could come in handy since cell phone service may be spotty in that area.
What To Bring to La Gruta, San Miguel de Allende
The most important thing to remember is that La Gruta Spa does not provide towels. They will sell you one for a staggering 400 pesos, so it’s best to remember to bring your own.
I love the super packable, fast-drying microfiber towels for traveling.
Things to Bring to La Gruta Spa
- Bathing Suit
- Microfiber Towel
- Hat and Sunglasses
- SPF Shirt for sun protection
- Comfortable Water Shoes
- Waterproof Cell Phone Case (check my favorite)
- Go Pro or another waterproof camera
How Much Time Do You Need At La Gruta Hot Springs?
You should plan to spend at least half a day at La Gruta hot springs. Those who really love soaking in thermal waters may want to plan on a full day at La Gruta Spa.
There is a large grassy area with tables where you can rest and order food from the restaurant. Or take a break from soaking in the hot springs with a massage at the spa.
I recommend arriving in the morning so that you can decide how long to stay as the day goes on. Although, if your San Miguel trip is short you may want to plan for a half day in the morning so that you can explore other things to do nearby (see next).
Other Tips For Visiting La Gruta Spa
- La Gruta Spa is open Wednesdays – Sundays from 7 am to 5 pm. Plan to arrive soon after they open, ideally on a weekday.
- The entrance fee of La Gruta Spa is 250 pesos, payable by card or cash. Children under 3 years old are free.
- You cannot bring food or drink inside other than a bottle of water.
- There are lockers to place your belongings. A 50 peso returnable deposit is required.
- Young children and those with a heart condition or low blood pressure are not permitted to enter the cave due to the high temperature.
- There is a restaurant and several places to relax outside of the thermal pools.
- You must wear a bathing suit to enter the pools.
- It’s recommended to shower before going in the hot springs.
- Pets are not allowed.
Places to Visit Near La Gruta, San Miguel de Allende
La Gruta Spa is located about a 15-minute walk from the tiny village of Atotonilco. From La Gruta, it’s a pleasant walk along a quiet road, mostly shaded and with a sidewalk. I highly recommend visiting this area when you are in San Miguel de Allende.
One of the most popular day trips from San Miguel de Allende is a visit to Santuario Atotonilco. It’s often referred to as the Sistine Chapel of Mexico due to the intricate paintings that cover the walls and ceiling.
The paintings, which were painted by one artist over the course of 30 years, depict the life and death of Christ. If you’ve saved your appetite, I highly recommend eating at the stalls just past the church before they close around 4 pm and then visiting the church after.
Mezcal Tasting at Finca la Devoción
Along the walk to Atotonilco, you’ll pass by Finca la Devoción, a former hacienda that is now a boutique hotel and event space. The grounds are incredible with a beautiful blend of old and new.
There is also a mezcal tasting bar that features an artisanal mezcal, El Tinieblo. This is a perfect quick stop to taste a mezcal and take home a bottle or two if you have time before visiting Atotonilco.
Questions About La Gruta Spa
How do I get to La Gruta Spa?
There are several ways to get to La Gruta Spa. The most fun is to book this horseback and hot springs tour which ends at La Gruta Spa. The most economical is to take the bus to La Gruta. You can also hire a taxi to take you to La Gruta, although you will need to arrange for the taxi to return to pick you up.
How far is La gruta from San Miguel de Allende?
La Gruta is just over 11 km (7 mi) from San Miguel de Allende. It takes about 20 minutes to get to La Gruta Spa from San Miguel de Allende.
About Julien Casanova
I’m happy you found me. I’m a solo female traveler and the creator of Cultures Traveled. I specialize in Mexico and Colombia travel with an emphasis on getting out of routine bucket list travel so you can immerse yourself in the local culture, make new friends, and experience different traditions.