High up in Gold Country, about a half hour from Truckee, lies the little blink-and-you’ll-miss-it town of Sierraville. There’s no grocery store, only one sub-par Mexican joint and another café that’s sometimes open, other times not--and a whole lot of cows.
But take a right at the “downtown” junction of Highways 89 and 49 and you’ll hit a dusty path that snakes its way up to Sierra Hot Springs & Spa, sister to the more well-known Harbin in Wine Country. There, you’ll find a rejuvenating oasis of natural hot springs and wildlife galore. A non-profit retreat and workshop center fringed by forest, the resort houses outdoor natural pools, a dry sauna, private baths and, the piece de resistance, the Temple Dome, an enclosed meditation room, featuring stained glass, skylights, two cold plunges and a sand-bottom hot pool (and a Buddha or two, of course).
Stay overnight in Globe Hotel or Main Lodge--where you'll find a communal kitchen, small store, massage room, TV room, bathroom and Philosophy Cafe--or go au naturel and sleep under the stars in one of the vast camping grounds areas.