A simple stroll around the forest is calming in its own ways, but pairing it with soothing, therapeutic hot springs takes it a notch higher. Here are some of the best ones from around the world. By Bayar Jain
Geology works in mysterious ways. From spewing volcanoes to unexplained canyons and pits, there’s a lot that Mother Earth has to offer. One of these many marvels is hot springs — geothermally heated groundwater rising from the Earth’s crust. While most hot springs are too boiling to dive into, some are infused with elements like iron and sulphur which have long been renowned for their healing properties. Plus, they’re absolutely relaxing! So, pack your bags and head to these awe-inspiring hot springs around the world.
1. Pamukkale, Turkey
What first appears as icy white sheets are actually soothing thermal pools in disguise. These travertine limestone terraces have formed over many years and have reportedly doubled as pools of relaxation for royalties like Queen Cleopatra as well. This western Turkey town even has ruins like a well-preserved theatre, necropolis with sarcophagi, and an antique pool with submerged Roman columns. Pair this with the neighbouring Hieropolis — an ancient Roman spa city — and you’ve got wellness like no other.
2. Termas Geometricas, Chile
Being located at the bottom of a canyon is enough reason to visit this tranquil space. Termas Geometric in an Asian-inspired hot spring lying in the heart of lush Villarica National Park. Here, twenty pools connected by suspended wooden walkways add to the blissful ambience. If the heat gets to you, then the accompanying cooling waterfalls offer apt respite. Once done, grab a bite at the café coupled with a fire pit for comfort.
3. The Blue Lagoon, Iceland
Easily one of Iceland’s most photographed sites, the picturesque Blue Lagoon looks like icy blue heaven with white steam adding to the trance. The lagoon’s healing properties can be credited to the silica, algae and the country’s black lava found here. Moreover, the lagoon also boasts of its own line of skincare products, and an on-site research facility to determine how the water can be used to cure ailments.
4. Ma’in Hot Springs, Jordan
You know the best hot springs are where the locals go. This pool in Jordon is that refuge. A happy surprise in the otherwise dry desert, these springs contain elements such as sodium, calcium, chloride, radon, hydrogen sulphide, and carbon dioxide. Soothing minerals apart, the crowning jewel at Ma’in Hot Springs are the tall heated waterfalls that pour down into the pools, creating an unparalleled spectacle.
5. Travertine Hot Springs, United States of America
Cross-country road trippers and solo adventurers flock this space regularly, and justifiably so! Surrounded solely by mountains and a soothing sun overhead, the Travertine Hot Springs is named after the limestone deposits here. Even a quick dip into the blue waters is enough to result in greater blood flow, improved circulation, and a refreshed and renewed you.
6. Yangpachen Hot Springs, Tibet
Located at 14,764 feet, these Tibetan hot springs are the highest of its kind on the planet. Despite being nestled on a cold plateau with stunning views of the Nyainqen Tanggula mountain range, these springs also boast of three pools to soothe the blistering 70-degree Celsius waters. If healing ailments weren’t enough, a nearby thermoelectric power plant also enables these waters to produce 30% of Lhasa’s electricity.