Dr. Wilkinson's Backyard Resort & Mineral Springs - Hot Springs in the U.S.


This inn can be described as the pioneer of Calistoga's mud baths.

The owner changed in 2019, and the new history is about to start.


Due to the renovation completed in 2020, the current situation differs from what this article describes.

Old Faithful Geyser of California

There are two Old Faithful Geysers in the United States.

The one in Yellowstone National Park is famous all over the world.

It spouted at regular intervals, so was named as faithful.

Old Faithful Geyser of California

The other one is located in the State of California.

It is rather small, but faithfully sprouts at around a 20-minute interval.

If you are not a hot springer, the entrance fee of $15.00 would be expensive; while you could sometimes find a discounted ticket in Groupon.


It was a five-minute drive from the geyser to the downtown of Calistoga.

The old railroad vehicles looked charming.

Calistoga Depot

The historic Calistoga Depot was built in 1868, and is the second oldest train depot in California.

The train service has been abandoned, but the area is currently maintained as a commercial facilities.


Across the street, there is a quiet inn.

In fact, this place is the birthplace of Calistoga' mud baths, which is famous for one of the stars of tourism in Napa Valley.


In 1944, Dr. Wilkinson found his calling and became a chiropractor.

In 1946, he arrived in Calistoga and leased Pacheteau’s Hot Springs, now the site of Indian Springs.


He was largely attracted by Calistoga’s hot springs and its abundance of pure volcanic ash soil, and opened a new bathhouse in 1952.

Courtyard 1

Originally there weren’t any rooms, pools or anything like that, except for the one-of-a-kind mud recipe.

Guest Rooms

A mud bath became popular among Calistoga; nowadays not a few hotels or spas offer the treatment.


As I experienced it at Golden Haven Hot Springs Spa & Resort, I decided to try natural hot springs' pools here.

Outdoor Pools 2

There are two outdoor pools behind the building.

Outdoor Pools 3

They are 91 and 82 degrees F.

Outdoor Pools 4

The indoor bath is much hotter.

Bathhouse 1

Sliding the glass door, I entered the steamy room.

Bathhouse 2

I felt faint smell of chlorine in the enclosed space.

It is hard to find the unchlorinated mineral spring's pools in Calistoga.
It canned be helped.

Indoor Bath 3

The water temperature was 104 degrees F.

Indoor Bath 2

In 2019, after 66 years of service, the Wilkinson family sold its business to a San Francisco-based resort company.

A large renovation was done in 2020 for more modern accommodations.

Indoor Bath 1

I wish that this place continued to turn Calistoga's history on its head.


Dr. Wilkinson's Backyard Resort & Mineral Springs, Calistoga, California, U.S.


  • Style
    Lodging / Walk-in
  • Rule
    Clothing required / Private pool
  • Chlorination
  • Water Temp
    Up to 104 degrees F

Official Website

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