In search of relaxation? Fancy chilling out in a hot spring? Look no further as we’ve lined up the best spa towns from around the world, according to global travellers.*
Enjoy the tranquil scenery of Tainan
Visitors to the Baihe district of Tainan in Taiwan during the Lotus blooming season (June to September) can attend the Lotus Festival before heading to the Guanziling Hot Springs for a rejuvenating mud bath. Then make sure to stop off at the Burning Water, also known as the Fire and Water Spring, a naturally occurring pool that has been on fire for over 300 years. For your own private hot spring bath, check into the Guanziling Lin Kuei Yuan Hot Spring Resort.
Veľký Meder, Slovakia
Go in search of utter relaxation this summer
Veľký Meder is a Slovakian spa town known for its thermal swimming pool, an oddity in this region as most of the local thermal pools are too hot to do anything other than bask in. The swimming pool is heated via two geothermal bores, and has an indoor section and a pool for young children. To make the most of the Veľký Meder hot springs and accompanying spa treatments, check into the Penzion Betty, only 8-minutes’ walk from the pool.
A private hot spring bath in Haymana, Turkey
Haymana is a spa town in the Central Anatolia region of Turkey and a great spot for sampling a traditional Turkish bath. The various pools and springs are volcanically heated and their high sulfur content is said to be especially beneficial for people suffering from arthritis. Out of the town’s many spa hotels, the Urofiz Termal Otel’s private hot spring bath makes it one of the most popular places to stay.
Take a load off and indulge all your senses
Moree has been unofficially dubbed the Spa Capital of Australia, thanks to the town’s abundance of hot springs and mineral baths. The main baths are located at the Moree Artesian Aquatic Centre where there are two public hot spring pools, a swimming complex, and a wellness centre offering various hydrotherapies. Visitors planning to spend most of their time at the Aquatic Centre can check into the nearby Jackaroo Apartments.
The private spring at Yamanaka Onsen Kissho Yamanaka
The Japanese province of Kaga is a collection of hot springs and resorts, some of which have been open since the 8th century, and the largest of which are Yamanaka, Yamashiro, and Awazu. Visitors to the area can choose between the public springs, which are often given evocative names like ‘Water for Longevity’, or check into a traditional ryokan with a private spring, like the Yamanaka Onsen Kissho Yamanaka.
The thermal springs at Copahue Volcano
The Andes’ Copahue Volcano heats the thermal springs here. The town mainly operates as a tourist and spa destination, and visitors to Copahue are quick to take advantage of the mud, algae, and stream treatments, in addition to the more traditional hot spring immersion therapy. Or you can check into the Land Express Neuquén and enjoy of their private pool and spa.
Pay a visit to the hottest spring in Europe
The commune and spa town of Chaudes-Aigues lives up to its name as home to the hottest spring in Europe: the source of the Par River. The Centre Thermoludique Caleden Spa has channelled the hot springs in a variety of innovative ways, including providing visitors with waterfalls, vapour and bubble emersion, geysers, and even a ‘musical bath’ on the centre’s roof. Visitors who want to continue their hydrotherapy into the evenings can check into La Maison de Gilbert.
Embrace wellness and visit a mineral spa
Take your pick from over 40 mineral springs in the town of Kyustendil in west Bulgaria, a balneological resort where the treatment of illness via the use of spas is common. Sitting at the foot of the Osogovo mountain and the Konyavo Mountain range, Kyustendil is surrounded by undeveloped National Parkland. Stay at the nearby Migeva Loft.
Relax at the Boglárka Panzió Étterem és Apartmanházak
A thermal spring was discovered in Mezőkövesd in 1938 and the thermal bath built on top of it – the Zsóry Thermal Baths – is now one of this Hungarian town’s main tourist attractions. The baths stretch across 11 hectares and have 21 outdoor and indoor pools, including medicinal sulfur baths. The Boglárka Panzió - Étterem és Apartmanházak is only 10-minutes’ walk from the Zsóry Baths and can be reached via a leisurely parkland stroll.
Bad Zurzach, Switzerland
Families enjoying the Bad Zurzach
Bad Zurzach is a Swiss municipality with some of the country’s most visited thermal baths and outdoor bathing is also available at the Sal Aqua Naura Wellness World. Thanks to the town’s salt mining history (responsible for the discovery of the springs in 1914) many of the pools are saltwater-based. Bad Zurach is only 30-minutes’ drive from Zurich but it’s worth staying overnight as most hotels, such as the Hotel zur Post, offer complimentary spa treatments.
** These recommendations come from the travel scientists at Booking.com. They’ve analyzed destinations endorsed for hot springs and, according to Booking.com reviewers, these places are the best.