Thermal springs are underground waters that come to the surface and are heated above 20 ° C. Their therapeutic effect was known for a long time: the first terms on the territory of Europe appeared in ancient Greece, then became widespread in ancient Rome, and from there they went already throughout the continent.
Now it is a popular type of rest and treatment, not dependent on the time of the year. Almost all European bathhouses are open all year round, and mild winters are not repelled from swimming in the open air even at low temperatures.
The first place in terms of number is occupied by Hungary, which has long and successfully attracted tourists including medical tourism.
The Szencheni Bath
The most famous baths in Hungary – the Szechenyi spa complex – are located in Budapest, next to the Varoshliget park. Built in 1913, these baths resemble a real palace both outside and inside. Along the entire perimeter of the building there are small baths with water of different temperatures and composition, some of them equipped with a jacuzzi, as well as various saunas and baths, differing in temperature and humidity, there are also aromatic saunas. In the courtyard there are two spacious pools, in one of them water reaches 34-36 degrees (it is more than 20 minutes is not recommended), in the other – about 30-32. A common picture that can be seen in Széchenyi: elderly people gather right here, in an open bath, at any time of the year to play chess. For young people there is their own entertainment:
Price: 15 euros per day, in the mornings (before 8 am) and evenings (after 5 days) is cheaper.
South of Budapest, near the famous Lake Balaton, there is a unique thermal spring. Lake Heviz – Europe’s largest thermal lake with an area of 47,500 square meters. It feeds on active underground sources and is completely cleared within 28 hours. The water here ranges from 27 degrees in winter to 34 degrees in summer, which makes it suitable for swimming all year round. In addition, water has a rare composition, including potassium, calcium and bicarbonate, which are useful for people with problems of musculoskeletal and musculoskeletal system, as well as peripheral nervous system. Due to the composition and temperature of the water in the lake, there is practically no flora and fauna except for water lilies. In the middle of the lake a spa center with saunas, a jacuzzi and salt rooms is built, which can be accessed either from the shore or directly from the lake.
Price: from 8.5 euros per 2 hours. Subscription for the day – 13 euros.
Bath in Miskolc-Tapolca
Another unusual Hungarian bathhouse is in Miskolc-Tapolca (northeastern Hungary) and is famous for its location in a natural cave that has been formed for several millennia under the influence of thermal springs. Thanks to thermal water, special useful air was formed in this cave, and treatment is recommended for people with respiratory system disorders. The water here, on the contrary, is not so saturated with salts and minerals, as in other terms, and you can swim in it without restriction in time. There are several small halls in the Miskolc-Tapolz bath in the cave, as well as a spacious outdoor swimming pool surrounded by beech forest.
Price: 11 euros per day.
Bathhouses in Baden-Baden
The German city of Baden-Baden has been heard since the 19th century, when famous Russian poets, writers and aristocrats went there. Here are some of the most famous bathhouses in Germany: the ancient Friedrichsbad, founded two thousand years ago by the Romans (of course, the baths were rebuilt in the XIX century, and the remains of Roman baths can be seen nearby), and the modern bathhouse of Caracalla. In addition, many hotels in Baden-Baden have their own spa facilities and their own access to the sources. Baden-Baden is located in the picturesque place of the Black Forest (Black Forest) between the slopes of the mountains, there is healing air and a favorable climate, which together with useful thermal water makes it ideal for rest, treatment and recovery. The baths themselves also have a wide range of possibilities: open and closed swimming pools, Jacuzzis and water showers, saunas and wet Turkish baths.
Price: from 15 euros (2 hours), 21 euros (4 hours).
Blue Lagoon in Iceland
The Blue Lagoon in Iceland attracts many tourists: not far from Reykjavik, huge squares, the opportunity to bask in hot and wholesome water at usually cool temperatures outside. It is interesting that these baths are not of natural origin: the water in them is real thermal, but the complex together with the “lake” is the creation of human hands, perfectly imitating the natural landscapes.
Price: from 35 euros in the winter and 40 euros in the summer.
Caldea Thermal Center
In small Andorra, known as the center of ski tourism and a zone with a reduced tax rate, the largest mountain thermal center Caldea is located. Despite the fact that the thermal springs in the Pyrenees were discovered long ago, the balneological center was built in Andorra only in 1994. Caldea is larger than most old baths, and includes all the fun: open and closed swimming pools, aqua massage, saunas and steam baths of different temperatures, Jacuzzis, solariums, baths with cold water and much more. Bathing suits are designed primarily for lovers of mountain skiing – here they can relax and relax after an active sport.