Covid-19 notice

For nearly 60 years, Esalen has welcomed guests to the picturesque Big Sur coastline. COVID-19 safety measures require us to adapt our hospitality — but while our operations will look and feel different, our dedication to exploring and realizing human potential remains the same.

The safety and protection of our guests, faculty and staff is of utmost importance as we all move forward together. This will be a time of calm, far fewer people, private baths overlooking the glorious Pacific Ocean, and open grounds to safely enjoy walks, picnics, games, exercise, and the sublime sunsets.

The Baths at Esalen
The hot springs let us savor life on the edge, literally and figuratively. Clothing is optional; contemplation is guaranteed.
Pure Hot Spring Water

The hot springs hang between sea and sky, an awe-inspiring respite for mind and body and a great equalizer. Simultaneously comforting and challenging, the baths nourish conversation, contemplation, and community.

A path down the hill from the Esalen Lodge brings you to the baths’ upper level, with an outdoor massage deck, living roof featuring a crystal and succulent garden, and hot tub with a lift for ADA access. Head to the lower level to find the springs themselves.

In 1869, arthritis sufferer Thomas Slate visited the hot springs in search of relief. It became the first tourist destination in Big Sur, frequented by people seeking relief from similar afflictions.

Wellness, Renewal and Adventure
Three Waters Converge
Fresh Water

In the upper reaches of the canyon, a freshwater spring bubbles to the surface. The source, Porter Springs, is in the Ventana Wilderness and provides about 75% of our water.

Hot Springs

Heated by the molten core of the earth and laden with minerals, the hot springs flow at a rate of 80 gallons per minute and emerge at a temperature of 119 degrees Fahrenheit.

The Pacific Ocean

Esalen hovers at the edge of the Pacific. There is nothing like a clear view of the ocean to center ourselves in the unity of all things.

Note: due to dangerous ocean conditions and currents, direct access to the ocean from Esalen is prohibited.

Experience a New Way of Being
Esalen Massage

Esalen Massage offers a practical approach to stress release and greater sensory awareness. The effects of relaxation massage have been scientifically validated time and time again. Its slow pace calms the nervous system. Special focus will be on quality of touch, breath awareness and centering.

Healing Arts Sessions

The Esalen approach to well-being is a path to inner and outer peace. Healing Arts sessions offer a range of bodywork, relaxation, and energy practices that support your spiritual journey. Our practitioners may help you relax, open your heart, and restore balance to your mind, body, and spirit.

The Healing Arts Passport

The Healing Arts Passport is a way for you to experience the relaxation and renewal of Esalen without staying overnight at the retreat center. The Passport includes access to our oceanside campus, a hot springs bathing session, an Esalen massage and meal from the Esalen lodge.

What To Expect
Perched on the bluff above the ocean, and nestled beside the healing waters of Esalen’s renowned natural hot springs, a deeply nourishing massage experience awaits you.​

Esalen​ Massage® is best described as the meeting and merging of form, energy, structure, and soul. With its nurturing contact, long strokes, and detailed attention to the whole body, an Esalen Massage provides a state of deep relaxation and healing. Our holistic modality, designed to enhance awareness and balance, achieves therapeutic effects without deep-tissue techniques.

Practitioners combine a full-​bodied ​presence with slow, focused muscle work to release everyday stresses, still the mind, and leave you feeling integrated and relaxed. They are dedicated to connecting deeply with each client, and can usually accommodate specific requests and preferences.

All our healing arts and massage sessions strive to empower you to regain a sense of harmony and to awaken inner resources for healing. It is not unusual for us to hear, "That was the most amazing massage I've ever received."

Campus Map

The layout of Esalen’s grounds.