NPR Reviews Provided by
Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort
LDGsquad2022 from: Haliburton, Canada
Trip Type: Family
Published Date: Nov, 29, 2022 Travel Date: Oct, 1, 2022 Rating: 3
Beautiful but not a must-see
My mother and I went just for the day to the hot springs. The facility is in a very picturesque area, great views all around the hot springs.
The springs themselves are very dirty. The actual change room/shower area looked unkept and there was all sorts of gross-ness floating in the springs - hair, a bandaid, some random pieces of fabric… we didn’t stay in for very long.
ericsG999BM from: Woodinville, Washington
Trip Type: Friends getaway
Published Date: Oct, 30, 2022 Travel Date: Oct, 1, 2022 Rating: 3
Overall, a frustrating experience
Please, please, please post signs about jewelry being vulnerable in the pools. I looked down after being in the pool for about 30 minutes and realized my relatively new and special to me ring was completely black from the sulfur. It was just very upsetting and could have been avoided so simply with just a sign posted to remove jewelry before entering the pool. There were three of us on a girls trip and the one who checked in got the message but the rest of us did not.
When we got in the room it took a while to realize that the third bed, a pull out, had no bedding. It was up to us to walk back to the front office and request it. It would have been nice to have a phone to call and get the supplies that were not already available like bedding. The room (floors, to be specific) was not clean and sort of gave you the creeps. Underneath the sofa bed there was a lot of trash and the floors were just generally dirty looking with an old spiderweb glob in the corner in the bathroom. The queen beds were comfortable. The pull out was pretty awful, but I kind of expected that. I actually scraped my knee against the wires you could feel in the mattress! Maybe supply a little extra padding of some sort with the bed bag supplied for the pull out?
My expectations for the restaurant were low because I had seen the menu before hand. We all had hamburgers and they were quite good. The staff at the front desk was very friendly and helpful.
SayMoi9 from: Bellevue, Washington
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Oct, 27, 2022 Travel Date: Oct, 1, 2022 Rating: 2
Had a two queen cabin, and we were so disappointed in the whole experience. The bathtub was almost fully clogged with a shower the height of my chest, there was no view at all from the cabin except people looking in from the parking lot, the fan made a terrible noise, there were spiders, and the bedside lamp was difficult and too bright. With the knowledge in advance that the website laughably overstates its tiny simple overpriced food menu, we brought our own food, but the lack of microwave or frig made it feel like a money grab to get you to the kitchen (or I guess to spend $50 extra on a kitchenette cabin). After all this, it could have been salvaged with a nice lobby to retreat to, but it appears what was once a lobby has been overtaken with a gift shop - more money grab - so there's no escape.
The springs - I've stayed at two natural hot springs before, and my partner another, and we can say with confidence these were depressingly dull, small, crowded, and uninspired. We did hit a stroke of good fortune in that we decided to go in the evening instead of the next morning, when the power was out. Instead of having backup power they simply closed the springs, which could have been hugely disappointing.
When we pulled away down the road, we both felt relief at how much more comfortable our car was. Not the feeling you want while leaving a "resort".
All together this was worth maybe $150 tops, including staffing a remote location, hot springs, and inflation. The rest was price gouging. If you really simply must see the springs, stay at the Lake Crescent Lodge 40 minutes away for $150 and spend $20 on a session pass to the springs. The Lodge offers a gorgeous view, nicer staff, a warm cozy lobby, boat rentals, good food, wifi, and the same simple bed for a much better price.
Touristnotatraveler from: Oahu, Hawaii
Trip Type: Family
Published Date: Oct, 18, 2022 Travel Date: Jul, 1, 2022 Rating: 3
Aramark is terrible, location is perfection
The springs are a national treasure. The location is serene and utter perfection. I didn't think anything could spoil the trip. Aramark, the company that runs the location is in shambles. Aramark called 3 months after my stay demanding I pay. This was extremely confusing because I confirmed on the Internet and with the front desk that they had my credit card for payment upon check out. I spent 10+ hours calling and emailing Aramark. Each person told me different amounts owed, wrong dates, and some said they could not even process my payment over the phone. One Aramark operator told me it sounded like a scam. I had to confirm this was not a scam with my bank. It was a nightmare. Finally, a very rude manager agreed to process my payment on a "secure phone line" and he confirmed that my credit card information had been there all along. It's sad to have a terribly dysfunctional organization running a very special park.
Bryan W from: Everett, Washington
Published Date: Oct, 12, 2022 Travel Date: Oct, 1, 2022 Rating: 3
Needs a Facelift
I wish I could give this place a great review... I'd never been and expected much more, I guess that's on me. The hot springs themselves are basically pools with different water temperatures in each. To me, they felt more like glorified hot tubs but with an odor of sulfur. They were okay for what they were, kind of expensive- but where it really had trouble was that they were overcrowded. Went on a Sunday/Monday trip. Got into the tubs and were right in people's faces. You couldn't really get away unless you went and sat in the cold pool. Then there were kids splashing all over and screaming. Kids will be kids, but at that price, it might be better to have 'family-hour sessions' or something. We went in twice during our stay and both times were short mostly due to the amount of people there.
Make sure you don't wear gold or silver jewelry. It will instantly get tarnished. Unfortunately, nobody told us that. On our second visit, we heard the woman at the counter tell customers ahead of us not to wear their gold and we looked down and saw that any jewelry we had looked like it had been through the war. Might be better to put a sign up, if there isn't one.
We stayed in one of the kitchen rooms. It was really glamping and not what I'd consider resort quality. We were lucky enough to get the one with the flashing Bates Motel fluorescent tube in the kitchen. Needless to say, we left that off and spent the nights working by way of one lamp and flashlights that were provided. The carpet looked liked it hadn't been vacuumed in a while. No paper towels in the kitchen, no pot holders, hardly any cooking implements. Not really set up for a kitchen. Broken alarm clock and paper thin walls. We could hear everything next door-including the debarked dog that kept barking when their owners left for a while (I know we say "but, my dog never barks"- they absolutely do when you leave them alone- every time). The beds were comfortable, in spite of the large mystery stain that greeted us on the way in- but the headboards seem too tall for the mattresses. You have to stack pillows up so that you don't nail your head on it. The room was very 1975 and worn out. Just out of date, not kept up, and kind of dirty.
Another point was the housekeeping vendor ( I think Aramark). They had a van in the parking lot that was wide open and towels and bags of junk (garbage?) were just kind of overflowing out of it and it was left open for all to see for a good few hours prior to check in. This was right in the front of the place. A very bad look, especially in the era of Covid. The cabin didn't look clean at all and just added a very low-rent vibe to the place, this, in spite of the hefty price tag.
If you are staying a few days: Bring. Food. The restaurant for lunch was really not good. No busing service for the tables. We sat outside and every table was filthy, garbage was on the ground and garbage cans were overflowing with non-recyclable containers that they use for food. This should be a given. It's Washington- we're psycho about recycling and the environment here, so maybe Aramark should change their food containers to be in step with this. We ordered a burger and it was undercooked - after we'd asked for well done. To me, this just seemed like a really run down snack bar- had to ask for napkins. had to ask for dining utensils, etc.
The resort just didn't do much for us. We did love the hiking and the environment. Very quiet. Very well maintained trails. I did miss the Internet (not their fault) for things like maps and stuff.
One last thing- not figured into my review: Because our camping years are behind us, I was a bit annoyed with having to buy a National Park Pass on the way in. We purchased a Discover Pass and thought that'd cover it, nope. That is for Washington Parks. Sol Duc is a National Park. This, to me isn't right. If I live in Washington and have purchased a pass for Washington parks, and Sol Duc is IN Washington, it seems to me that should be included. Small point, and not the resort's fault. But it was pretty annoying.
I think this is a once in a lifetime destination. Maybe stay a night and head off. But after a day, you're ready to leave.
- Value: 2
- Location: 4
- Service: 3