The only warm mineral spring in Florida is found on an obscure back road (our favorite kind) near North Port, Florida. This place is of major historical and archeological note and I’m surprised we’d never heard of it! You may not step out of the water with a younger face, but perhaps you’ll feel you have more verve and zing.
A few intriguing facts about the springs:
- The water flowing from this spring is low in oxygen and is believed to have been trapped underground for over thirty thousand years.
- In 1973 a 10,000 year old skull still containing brain matter (can you imagine?) was discovered, which changed the theory about the time of Homosapian movement to 4,000 years earlier than originally thought.
- Some believe Ponce de Leon hoped this was The Fountain of Youth. (Some also believe that Ponce was never actually searching for The Fountain of Youth.) (I still am, though…)
- Eight million gallons of water a day flows through and replenishes itself every 2 hours.
Soaking in warm mineral spring water is thought to have healing and preventative qualities, and natural medicine practitioners in Japan and Europe have been recommending balneotherapy – treatment of disease by bathing – for centuries. Some purported benefits are:
- Increased blood flow, circulation.
- Increased metabolism.
- Absorption of essential minerals.
- Treatment of chronic digestive diseases and constipation.
- Treatment of gout, diabetes, and liver complaints.
Admission is $20 per adult, $15 for children ages 6 – 17 and $10 for children ages 3 – 5. Read more about visiting Warm Mineral Springs here. (Disclaimer about the top photo: Warm Mineral Springs is a place to float and be lazy, not hurl yourself belly-flop style.)
We didn’t partake of the springs during our visit. We were hell-bent on getting to Matlacha, where we didn’t stay (read about that, here) but we do plan on coming back to Warm Mineral Springs to test the healing theories, particularly that of increased metabolism (#ihatecardio.)
We did, however, stop for lunch and drinks by the water.
121 Playmore Dr.
The address says “Venice” but The Myakka River Oyster Bar is just down the street from Warm Mineral Springs.
- VIBE: Down-home, super casual, all ages but lots of retirees.
- ARRIVE: By boat or by car. Plenty of parking.
- SIT: Inside or out on the covered deck or by the palm trees pictured above.
- SIP: Happy Hour is Monday through Friday until 5, and ALL DAY Saturday and Sunday.
- NOSH: Try the Riverboat Gumbo and the Baked Horseradish Crusted Fish Fillet. The menu abounds with fried dishes but also chargrilled options, burgers, and salads as well.
- LISTEN: We can’t find evidence that the Myakka River Oyster Bar has live music, but they DO have a full bar… so maybe YOU can start a sing-along…
- WE LOVE: The friendly service as well as the peaceful river view.
12587 South Tamiami Trail
Warm Mineral Springs, FL 34287
Not a bungalow, but we also seek out the locally owned, non-chain mom-and-pops, and when this one was built in 1958 it was ultra-modern in design! Listed on The National Register of Historic Places, the Warm Mineral Springs Motel was designed by famed architect Victor A. Lundy. Read more about this lengendary talent, the oldest surviving member of The Sarasota School of Modernism, here.
As we didn’t spend the night here we’re just going to show you some photos of the exterior, but our research assures us this is the place to stay when partaking of the Warm Mineral Springs.
Let us know if you’ve visited Warm Mineral Springs, and how you felt stepping out of that 87 degree rejuvenating water. We’re thinking we need a dose of it, soon!
Warm Mineral Springs is near Florida’s west coast, 15 miles southwest of Venice and 56 miles north of Fort Meyers.
99.9% of our photos are taken by us, and if they’re not we’ll say so. The first photo of this article is from Pexels, who said they didn’t need attribution but I wanted to give them a shout-out anyway.