Soaking in hot mineral water has long been a favorite pastime of cultures around the world. These therapeutic springs are found in dozens of destinations and can go by various names. In Japan, look out for “onsen” towns. In Spanish-speaking places, the term “aqua caliente” or “aguas termales” is often in the name.
List of Countries with Hot Springs
Luckily, there are dozens of countries around the world with safe natural hot springs to soak in. So chances are, you’ll be able to travel to a hot spring fairly easily, no matter what continent you find yourself on. Experience the benefits of these natural healing waters at thousands of locations across the globe.
Map of Countries with Hot Springs
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Guide to the World’s Top Hot Springs
A hot spring is a natural phenomenon when boiling water rises to the surface and creates a pool. Mineral-rich thermal waters from all over the world have been used for hundreds of years, whether they are found naturally in collections or piped into spas.
These waters are used for healing, medical properties, and pure relaxation. See the top hot springs on the planet and relax in the middle of mountains, rainforests, and icebergs. Get out your travel planner and list must-sees since every continent offers at least one soaking site in warm or hot water.
African Hot Springs
During the colder months, many people visit South Africa and look forward to relaxing in one of the country’s many natural hot springs or pools. Northern Cape, Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, and Limpopo in the far northeast all have springs. More than 200 natural pools can also be found around Kenya’s Lake Bogoria, making it the most well-known of the country’s hot spring sites. There are springs both within and beside the lake, and the water temperature is consistently about 98 °F /37 ℃.
Visiting Uganda and not soaking in the country’s famous hot springs would be a shame. Around Murchison Falls National Park, the Fort Portal region, the Queen Elizabeth National Park region, and the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park region are the primary areas where hot springs can be found.
Asian Hot Springs
Hot springs are significant in South Korea and Japan’s medical and cultural traditions. Visitors to Japan may soak in hot springs at any of the country’s many ryokan, hotels or public bathhouses. Hakone, a hilly location in Kanagawa Prefecture, is home to more than a dozen thermal baths, all courtesy of Mount Fuji and its volcanic activity. Traveling there from Tokyo takes around an hour and a half by train, so it’s doable as a day excursion for those staying in the city.
For decades, the Suanbo Hot Springs Special Tourism Zone in South Korea has been a popular place for people to relax and get hydrotherapy. The legendary monarch Taejo supposedly visited the area often. The hot springs are well-known for being the first to produce a steady water flow (about 30,000 years ago). The water, on average, is about 127 °F/53 °C, slightly alkaline, and emerges from 230 feet/100 meters below the surface.
Australian/Oceanianic Hot Springs
In the nation of New Zealand, there are a surprising number of hot springs. Some visitors say that the water’s mineral content and calming effects in these pools make them useful for more than just relaxing.
The Te Waiariki Ngawha Hot Springs is renowned among local Maori for their curative virtues and cultural importance, and they have 16 separate mineral baths with private and public soaking options. Geothermally vibrant towns like Rotorua have an Earth’s crust much thinner than elsewhere, creating great spots for hot springs resorts.
Throughout Australia there are many thermal springs. New South Wales, Western Australia, and even the Northern Territory have their fair share of springs.
Dalhousie Springs, one of the most well-known natural oasis, can be found in Witjira National Park. You may swim in privacy in these hot springs, which range in temperature from 98-109 °F/37-43 °C. Tourists also appreciate the natural hot mineral waters in Victoria’s spas and Queensland’s hotels.
European Hot Springs
Whether you’re looking for a coastal or inland hot spring country, Europe has you covered. For centuries, natural hot pools in Italy, especially Ichia and Tuscany, have been popular for their purported health and aesthetic advantages.
Hungary has its own unique water resources, despite its lack of ocean connection. More than 1,300 hot water pools, including 123 in Budapest alone, provide endless options for soaking in spas around the landlocked country.
The Blue Lagoon in Iceland is a modern wonder in the middle of a pitch-black lava field. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in all of Europe. The waters of this world-famous spa, heated by geothermal activity, are praised for its purported skin-healing powers. It’s a day spa experience where you can completely unwind by soaking in soothing, bath-warm water, and then opt to spend the night on-site at one of two accommodations.
North/Central American Hot Springs
Hot springs may be found all around the United States, and visitors can choose from more rustic options perfect for a post-hike soak to more luxurious spas. In the scenic Napa Valley, Calistoga is famous for its natural thermal pools. Mineral baths, available at several local hotels, are a popular amenity. Many other cities in Southern California, including Palm Springs, Desert Hot Springs, and Carlsbad, are also home to lavish spas and geothermal waters.
Take a dip in the healing waters of Canada’s Banff Upper Hot Springs to refresh and unwind. Both tourists and locals frequent this area because of the beneficial effects of the mineral-filled waters. These thermal waters are Canada’s highest-functioning hot springs at 1,585 m (5,200 ft) above sea level. Guests can also take in breathtaking views of the Spray River Valley and Mount Rundle from the rooftop patio and pool area.
Central America’s Costa Rica has a lot of great spas, and some of them have thermal springs right on the property. There are hot pools, cold pools, and beautiful artificial waterfalls at Eco Termales. The Arenal Volcano provides the heat for several of the area’s sizzling pools, including this one. Tours of hot springs often include exciting extras like zip lines and walks over suspended bridges.
South American Hot Springs
Because of the continent’s many volcanoes, mineral-rich hot springs may be found across South America. Some pools are in the forest, while others are built into luxury resorts.
Argentina’s Termas de Río Hondo, in the northern province of Santiago del Estero, is a major tourist destination because of its abundant natural springs. Entre Ros is home to more hot spring waters than any other in the country, and the region’s network of thermal spas links together its many cities.
Chile is a region of opposites, from the freezing weather with glaciers to being home to geysers with boiling temperatures. Tourists go to the sputtering mud pools and hot springs at Termas de Puritama and El Tatio Geysers, located on the north side of the country and readily accessible from San Pedro. These establishments are tourist favorites and equipped with wooden walks, changing facilities, and cafés for the comfort of its patrons.
If you’re looking for a moonlit Cascada extension to your day excursion in the El Morado region, visit the Colina Hot Springs in the Andes near Santiago in Central Chile. The southern Chilean Aguas Calientes springs are tucked away in Puyehue National Park on the Chanleuf River Shore. From there, you may enjoy breathtaking panoramas of the forested Casablanca Volcano.
Despite being a lesser-known vacation spot, Uruguay is home to some of the world’s finest hot springs and offers excellent relaxing facilities. In the northwest of the country, the Arapey Thermal Resort & Spa is an all-inclusive place to vacation with several thermal pools.
There is just one place for a soak in the southern region. Located in Punta Ballena, the Alive Health Spa Resort has an outdoor pool with water from natural hot springs, and guests must be at least 17 years old to use it, along with the many spa services.
Any Antarctican Hot Springs?
Deception Island in Antarctica is the only known hot spring on the continent. The only way to see and experience these thermal baths in the coldest region on Earth is by booking a tour or a cruise. Many visitors who want to see the wonders of the Antarctic depart from ports in Argentina and are brought by Deception Island as a stop. Passengers are given a chance to soak in a shallow pool on the beach of the island.
Hot springs may be found just about everywhere in the globe. If you want to see the best of what the world has to offer, consider visiting some of the finest hot springs on our planet.