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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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RV park review: We loved Sam’s in Desert Hot Springs

Sam's Family Spa is one of our favorite RV parks so far on our grand tour of the West. It's well-kept, quiet and the surrounding desert landscape is gorgeous. Then, there's the huge bonus of the on-site hot springs pools, free to guests of the RV park.

Yes, the California sun is almost always shining, but temps can dip down in the 40s and 50s in January. We were so ready to take the plunge.

The town of Desert Hot Springs is filled with RV parks boasting hot springs pools, but a tip from a savvy local sent us to Sam's. She told us that Sam's is one of the only pools that doesn't add chlorine to its pools. It's been around long enough that when the law came down requiring that step, it was grandfathered in. What it does in the interest of safety is drain and refill its hot pools daily. Brilliant!

We discovered Sam's last winter when we were tent-camping at Joshua Tree National Park and vowed to return with our RV. After a soak and a swim, a deeply restful sleep followed. 

The park has more than 300 sites, many filled with big rigs, and some permanent housing. There's definitely a feeling of community, with the clubhouse offering regular movie screenings, field trips, yoga classes and more. The office doubles as a small convenience store, and kids were lined up for soft serve ice cream when we checked in.

Our spacious, 30-amp site was $60, which felt like a bargain considering entry to the hot springs pools was included.

The only downside was that we weren't within walking distance of any restaurants or retail, something we had really enjoyed at Happy Traveler in Palm Springs. Still, we really enjoyed our stay at Sam's and look forward to returning there for a longer stay someday.

Worth noting: The excellent Blair Station RV Parts is just down the road, offering vehicle repairs and a handy place to refill propane tanks.

Read more of our RV reviews


Leslie Kelly
Leslie Kelly is a freelance writer.