A popular destination spot for hot springs, hunters, birdwatchers, fishermen and shoppers, Saratoga also happens to be an ideal location for an SI Swimsuit photo shoot.
Surrounding Saratoga are several mountains including Elk Mountain, the Snowy Range Mountains and the Sierra Madre Mountains. These mountains offer breathtaking views and proved to be the backdrop for some of our favorite photos of all time.
But even if you're not visiting Wyoming for a photo shoot, there's still plenty to do! Hundreds of miles of hiking trails for the novice and experienced outdoorsman are scattered throughout the Medicine Bow Routt National Forest. And for winter activity lover, the snowmobile trails are second to none.
What could be better? Saratoga is a quick drive from the beautiful Brush Creek Ranch and Magee Homestead.
So stop dreaming about that perfect mountain vacation, and book your trip to Saratoga, Wyoming now. We promise you won't regret it.
Where is Saratoga, Wyoming, located?
Saratoga is in the southeast region of Wyoming in the Platte Valley and just 1.5 hours from Laramie, Wyoming.
How do I get to Saratoga, Wyoming?
One of the best ways to get to Saratoga is by car via Highway 130. This allows visitors to take in the beautiful scenery in Medicine Bow National Forest and small-town charm along the way. The nearest airport is the Laramie regional airport (a 1 ½-hour drive), Cheyenne regional airport (about a two-hour drive), or Denver International Airport, (about a four-hour drive).
Give us a quick snapshot history of Saratoga, Wyoming.
In 1884, the town of Saratoga was named after the Iroquois Indian word Sarachtoue, which translates to “place of miraculous water in the rock.” Saratoga sits atop one of the most active mineral hot springs in Wyoming. Natives, and later European settlers, believed in the healing powers of the natural mineral baths. In 1877, William Caldwell set up a bathhouse near the springs that attracted visitors from all over the country, and even from as far away as England.
If you are looking to learn more about the history of Saratoga while you’re there, check out the Saratoga Museum, where you can learn about the early geology through pioneer settlers to modern times in Saratoga.
What is Saratoga, Wyoming, known for and why?
Saratoga is best known for its hot springs, outdoor and fishing activities.
Since the 1880s visitors have traveled from around the world to soak in Saratoga’s hot springs. In fact, Saratoga sits atop Wyoming’s most active mineral hot springs. Visitors and locals enjoy taking advantage of the free hot spring facility (the Hobo Pool) in town as well as Saratoga Hot Springs Resort, which features the mineral hot springs and the Healing Waters Spa. Both are great for visitors after long hikes in the nearby Snowy Mountain Range or a day of exploring the shops and restaurants in town.
Saratoga is also best known for having the best blue-ribbon trout fishing in the country, with more than 100 miles of freestone rivers flowing through the Platte Valley. Saratoga has several public access points along the river where you can fish on your own or hire on of the many outfitters to be your guide.
What is the weather like year-round in Saratoga, Wyoming?
Overall, the weather in Saratoga is seasonal, and because Wyoming is high plains visitors can expect warmer days and cool nights. Generally, summers are warm, temperatures in the spring and fall can be mild or a bit cooler, and winters are colder with plenty of snow.
What is the best time of year to travel to Saratoga, Wyoming?
No matter the season, there is something to explore. Year-round, visitors can take advantage of the hot springs’ restorative properties.
From the spring to early fall season, explore fishing opportunities on the river or take in the breathtaking views that have attracted artists and photographers on hundreds of miles of hiking trails for novice and experienced hikers throughout the Medicine Bow Routt National Forest.
The fall colors are not to be missed as the Aspen trees turn a brilliant yellow. Finally, in the winter, there are 300 miles of snowmobile trails to choose from, which allow you to go all day without feeling crowded. In town, experience the unique ski/horse riding sport skijoring during the winter festivities.
What is the topography like in Saratoga, Wyoming?
Surrounding Saratoga are several mountains including Elk Mountain, the Snowy Range Mountains and the Sierra Madre Mountains. Located in the Platte Valley, you can also find lush, wide-open plains.
What is so unique about this particular region of the U.S.?
In addition to Saratoga’s abundance of natural resources and outdoor recreation, it is uniquely positioned atop of Wyoming’s most active mineral hot spring. Saratoga is one of Wyoming’s hidden gems of small towns. The town exemplifies Western heritage and the spirit of the West.
Tell me about the culture and people in Saratoga, Wyoming.
Saratoga offers visitors small-town charm and easy access to nature with dining, quality shops and outdoor recreation opportunities. When visiting Saratoga, you will experience Western hospitality and friendly faces who can offer their favorite local spots.
What are must-have packing items for a trip to Saratoga, Wyoming?
Make sure to pack your favorite swimsuit to enjoy the restorative waters of the hot springs during your trip.
Throughout the year, also make sure to pack layers so you can enjoy the outdoors and the changing climates at different elevations during hikes or while on the river fishing.
What is the one thing someone must bring home from Saratoga, Wyoming?
Laura M is a great shop to find your perfect souvenir to remember your trip to the West. From modern Western wear to jewelry, fine art and more, carve out time in your travels to explore all the treasure!
What are some go-to restaurants in Saratoga, Wyoming?
The best meals are often accompanied by a delicious beverage, so make sure to check out one of the pubs in the area, including favorites:
· Firewater Public House – In addition to a wide selection of whiskey, Firewater features delicious food that is all made from scratch. For example, French fries are cut in house and the brioche buns are made in house and baked daily. The food focuses on local ingredients as much as possible.
· Snowy Mountain Pub & Biergarten – Located at Saratoga Hot Springs Resort, the pub offers a wide selection of comforting pub food featuring starters, burgers, homemade pizza, fresh salads and homemade soups.
· Hotel Wolf – A Registered National Historic Landmark built in 1893, enjoy the historic atmosphere and the hotel’s popular prime rib dinner.
· Sweet Marie’s Bakeshop – Offering cupcakes, pies, cookies, coffee/tea, breakfast and much more in Saratoga.
· Lollypops – Opened in 1989 and has served up some of the best home-made ice cream made in house continuously since that date. They also serve a full breakfast, lunch and light dinner options, as well as espresso drinks.
What are the best bars in Saratoga, Wyoming?
· Firewater Public House is a community pub offering high quality comfort food and a unique selection of 100+ whiskey varieties—many from Wyoming. In addition to being set next to the North Platte River in town, Firewater brings an abundance of charm in the newly remodeled historic building. Take a seat at the community table or the reclaimed wood bar, where you can learn more about the whiskey selection from the friendly bartenders. In the warmer months, enjoy live music and events!
· Hotel Wolf is a Registered National Historic Landmark built in 1893. In addition to the hotel’s popular prime rib dinner, in the lounge you can enjoy a crafted cocktail or a cold beer.
· Saratoga Hot Springs Resort Pub / Snowy Mountain Brewery – Located at Saratoga Hot Springs Resort, the brewery is Wyoming’s third-oldest craft brewery. You can enjoy nine craft beers at the pub on site, in the scenic beer garden, or take a one-liter can to your next adventure in Saratoga. The pub menu features a variety of starters, burgers, homemade pizza, fresh salads and homemade soups.
What are the top five must-see places/must-have experiences in Saratoga, Wyoming?
1. Take a dip at Saratoga’s famous hot springs and leave refreshed and renewed.
2. Visit downtown Saratoga for the quintessential charm of a small town and Western heritage. While wandering the boutiques, make sure to visit Laura M. boutique for eclectic treasures from around the world; step back in time at Hotel Wolf, where you can also enjoy a meal and a drink. For a sweet treat after dinner, stop into Sweet Marie’s Bake Shop or Lollypops.
3. Fish along the Platte River. Enjoy the solitude or join a guide to find the best spots in hopes of catching a blue-ribbon trout.
4. Learn more about whiskey and taste a wide selection from at Firewater Public House. In the warmer months, make sure to enjoy the atmosphere with a view of the North Platte River and scheduled live music.
5. Get outdoors in the Medicine Bow National Forest! From wildflowers, fall colors, snow peaks or just stunning views any season, take a hike through the area that will be sure to leave you inspired.
What are the best hiking trails in Saratoga, Wyoming?
Just outside of Saratoga in the Medicine Bow National Forest, there are several trails at varying leaves for hikers including the Snowy Range Mountains; they’re aptly named—come prepared for some snow any time of the year. For a moderate hike, take the Gap Lakes Trail No. 108, Libby Creek Trail or for a more challenging route, the loop to Medicine Bow Peak, which is the highest point in southern Wyoming.
Wyoming is also home to 550 miles of the famous Continental Divide Trail, which runs from Mexico to Canada. Those 550 miles of the CDT travel from the Snowy Range in Medicine Bow National Forest up to Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming.
Important for all hikers is to remember that Wyoming is at a higher elevation, and visitors should take into consideration the effects of elevation during their visit. Drink plenty of water, take breaks and get good rest.
What are the best tour companies in the area? And what kinds of tours do they offer?
There are several guides out of Saratoga that can take groups fishing, hunting or snowmobiling in all seasons.
· Saratoga Hot Springs Resort offers group tours including golfing, fishing, scenic float trips, horseback riding and guided snowmobile tours.
· Hack’s Tackle & Outfitters provides guided trips including fishing trips, scenic float trips and high mountain alpine lake fishing on ATVs.
· For more information on guided tours visit https://www.wyomingcarboncounty.com/.
Are there any food and wine tours in Saratoga, Wyoming?
Check the Snowy Mountain Brewery and Firewater Public House to find their latest scheduled events, which can include tastings, depending on events schedules.
For an adventure backpacker and outdoorsy type of traveler, what can someone experience in Saratoga, Wyoming?
Saratoga is an outdoorsman and outdoorswoman paradise! If you are a backpacker, nearby Medicine Bow Routt National Forest offers hundreds of miles of hiking trails from beginner to expert-level routes, which allow for breathtaking views of wildflowers, fall colors or snowy mountain peaks. After your hikes, make sure to visit one of the Saratoga hot springs for its restorative mineral properties.
Trout fishing is also very popular in Saratoga and attracts visitors from around the world. With more than 100 miles of freestone rivers flowing through the Platte Valley, Saratoga has some of the best trout fishing in the country. Saratoga has several public access points along the river where you can fish on your own or hire on of the many outfitters to be your guide.
Recommendations for some R&R experiences in Saratoga, Wyoming?
Makes sure to take advantage of the hot spring pools on a trip to Saratoga. The Hobo Hot Springs pool is free and open around the clock, featuring two natural pools (one named the “Not So Hot Pool”) adjacent to the Platte River—perfect for travelers on a budget or looking for a soak after a long day of activities.
Visit Saratoga Hot Springs Resort, which has a 70-foot outdoor hot springs pool and five smaller, teepee-covered soaking pools. Book a spa appointment at Healing Waters Spa, housed in its original 1902 spa building. The couples retreat treatment for two includes a soak in one of the teepee-covered pools, wine and appetizers and a massage.
What are your budget traveler advice and tips for traveling to and around Saratoga, Wyoming?
If you are traveling on a budget, Saratoga offers many economical options to take advantage of while visiting. First and foremost, take advantage of the outdoor opportunities, including fishing and hiking, in Saratoga. Following any activity, visit the Hobo Pool, which is a free hot spring facility opened 24-hours a day. Finally, grab a drink at one of the local pubs to enjoy good food and see live music or spectacular views of the river.
Why is Saratoga, Wyoming so special?
Saratoga is a hidden gem of Wyoming. From its abundance of outdoor activity and beauty to its growing dining and unique shops on its main street, visitors will feel like they discovered a truly special place with Western heritage and hospitality.
Check out travelwyoming.com to find out more about Saratoga and all the town has to offer.