Hey Hey! I’m excited to share another great Bay Area Getaway spot….this time in the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains or the other side of Yosemite lol….its about a good 4 hour drive (without traffic) but if you decide to drive through Yosemite then it’ll be well worth the drive just in the scenery alone.
I’m such a lover of hot springs and Mono County is filled a ton of natural hot springs! The locals there have it totally figured out and arrive in their robs in the early morning with their coffee thermos and go watch the sunrise or sunset in the nice hot tub. I was surprised at how many other activities you could find in Mono County, sharing my weekend guide, hope you enjoy!
Silver Maple Inn and The Cain House
We chose to stay in Bridgeport, mainly because two of the hot springs I wanted to visit were nearby….there are only a handful of hotels in Bridgeport (population of 800 during high season) and we chose to stay in a cute historic one, of course! In came Silver Maple Inn and The Cain House which used to be a motor lodge back in the 20’s and a miner’s house. The Cain House still has the ambiance and feel of the original family house with breakfast every morning in the downstairs dining room….very cozy. There are a few other hotels on the main strip and Airbnb’s are always a great choice, especially if you’re a group!
Bridgeport Inn and Restaurant
Another great historical hotel in Bridgeport is the local inn which you won’t miss since its the biggest building and on the main road (only a quarter mile long, max). We stopped by there for dinner one of the nights. They have traditional American food and lean on traditional steak and potatoes type of meal. Its a cute stop by for a quick bite or drink.
Travertine Hot Springs
The whole reason I made the trek over the other side of the Sierra’s was for the springs…I’m just gravitate towards natural flowing hot water springs, I think this is my third trip to go explore some hot springs and definitely not the last. The view from Travertine is absolutely gorgeous and it is so peaceful and quiet…I definitely recommend watching the sunrise or the sunset if you go for a dip.
Con: the only con to the whole experience is that there are water bugs that swim around the tubs. Although they could easily be ignored, if you’re a bug freak like me….then you’ll only be able to tolerate the pool for 15-min max.
Pro-Tip: majority of the tubs get filled by the first tub with the water running down the crack of the large rock into the pool (left photo) below. For the warmest tub go for a dive in the first tub and go to the tub that is directly under the rock, there’s a cute little 1-person tub (also hotter water means less water bugs 😉 )
Since we have a kayak we thought it would be great to take a half day trip to Mono Lake, about 30-mins from Bridgeport. What we were not prepared for was the dirt windy drive down to the ramp with parking for maybe two or three cars?? Weird! We also weren’t prepared for the fact that we were the ONLY people in the entire lake….like literally there was not a single soul!
A few things…Mono Lake is extremely salty, like more salty than the ocean. Meaning there are no fish that live in the lake. No fish means no fisherman….who make up the majority of the “tourists” in Mono County…who knew. Long story short, go to nearby Twin Lakes which has fish, stores, and more importantly other people.
Creatives & More – Capture Great Fall Content
Calling All Creatives! Looking for a place to shoot some fall content? Well Mono County is a great spot to shoot all of your fall outfits and holiday gear! The hues of yellows, browns, and oranges are stunning with backdrops of traditional farm houses is definitely gram worthy!
***Note, Mono County is a very seasonal city…meaning that after October 31st majority of the hotels, stores, and businesses close down until spring. So if you are going for fall vibes then make sure you go early fall! It’s also a gorgeous place to visit in springtime!
<3 Happy Travels <3