Discover the best spas in Budapest and learn how it works. The thermal baths are one of the capital's must-see attractions hungarian
Budapest, the capital of Hungary, was built on top of the largest hot springs basin in the world. Since the time when the Celtic peoples lived there, the natural hot springs were already used for their medicinal benefits.
At the time the Roman Empire occupied the territory, the valley in what is now Budapest became known as Aquincum from these sources, and its fame soon spread to the rest of Europe and parts of Asia. In the 16th century, it was the turn of the Ottoman Empire to claim the region and, for the first time, due to the Turkish passion for bathhouses, the hot springs were channeled and their basins transformed into swimming pools, the famous spa.
Today, Budapest has more than 30 different thermal baths scattered throughout the city, which, because of this, received the nickname of spa city. Among these many, four spa stand out as the most popular in the Hungarian capital. if you who have Budapest as the next destination, we separate the best bathrooms in town to make the most of these natural attributes.
Best spas in Budapest
The Széchenyi Thermal Baths is the largest medicinal bath in Europe, in operation since 1913. Its water is supplied by two thermal springs, with temperatures of 74ºC and 77ºC and inside, we can find 15 bathtubs and 3 swimming pools in total, in which the waters reach 38°C. Its medicinal character comes from the water components, which include a number of minerals that are useful against joint problems.
Because it is the largest and has hot pools on the outside of the building, Széchenyi has become the most famous of Budapest's thermal baths. In general, the public is mainly young, which made parties also use the hot springs as a venue. If you want to go clubbing at the Széchenyi hot springs, they take place on Saturdays, after closing for the general public.
Gellért's thermal pools were built between 1912 and 1918 with an art-nouveau-style architecture, full of sculptures and colorful walls. Even today, some sectors retain their original structures. Smaller than Széchenyi, the hot pools, all indoors, reach 40ºC. And because it is more intimate, Gellért attracts an older audience. In addition to the hot pools, the place also has a cold water wave pool outside, intended for use during the summer.
The Gellért baths are located inside the famous Danubius Hotel Gellért, but the two establishments operate independently. If you want to stay at the Danubius, you will have a discount on the entrance to the thermal baths.
Kiraly Baths are the oldest thermal baths in Budapest, built by the Ottoman Turks in the mid-16th century. Traveling back in time to the Medieval Era, Kiraly Baths, unlike contemporary Turkish baths, have octagonal pools ( the so-called ilidzas instead of hammams). In addition to the historic pool, there are 3 smaller pools and a modern jacuzzi pool. To set up the atmosphere, the place has a characteristic dim light, as the pool receives light from the holes of the 16th century domes, covered with glass.
The bath hasn't been restored in many decades, which gives it an even more fascinating historical appeal, where Turkish details are mixed with the medicinal bath culture of the 1890s and the practical and historical approach of Budapest's communist era.
Rudás spa, together with Kiraly, is one of the oldest spas in Budapest, with part of its facilities dating back to 1520. And, as a differential, Rudás is the only spa in the city that still allows bathing to be enjoyed. naked, as the ancient Ottomans did
Rudás is divided into three areas, called: “thermal bath”, “swimming pool” and “wellness”. The “thermal bath” is where the oldest facilities are located and where naked swimming is allowed following a separation between men and women on specific days. Men can wear every Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Women are allowed on Tuesdays. Weekends are open to mixed audiences, but everyone is properly dressed.
Another interesting point of Rudás is its terrace. Located in the “wellness” area, which is uncovered and has a circular pool of warm water that gives a view of the entire Pest side of the city. During the night, the night city lights make the view even more magnificent.
The swimming pool area and the wellness space, which also has a room with 4 pools in addition to the terrace, are open to the mixed public every day.
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