No matter where your holiday in Spain takes you, a hot springs pool likely won’t be too far away. In Spanish, “thermal springs” translates to “aguas termales”, or “aqua caliente” for “hot water”. There are also local spas called “balnearios”, which are terrific places for some needed relaxation and a therapeutic soak. So always be on the lookout for those phrases if looking for natural hot springs.
List of Hot Springs in ESP
Spain is blessed with an abundance of thermal springs, rich in minerals and heated naturally to soothe away your aches and pains. This European coastal country also features some terrific beaches, whether on the Atlantic Ocean western side, or the eastern shores along the Mediterranean Sea. So make the most of all the wonderful places to swim and soak, it’s a healthy way to spend your time.
Map of Hot Springs in ESP
Guide to Spain’s Natural Thermal Springs
Spain has a history of utilizing natural hot springs, though there the formal spas are called “balnearios”. There are both paid and free, primitive thermal mineral springs found throughout the country.
Like many other European nations, the first organized use of hot springs for therapy came from the proliferation of Greek culture. This was also when the idea of bodily “imbalances” started to take over. It was believed that a long soak in the hot water was a means of re-establishing that internal balance.
What makes Spain stand out from the rest of Europe is that the mineral bathing practice only grew and did so under the influence of another culture. In the south of Spain, Islam’s focus on good hygiene and purity led to the creation of several Arab-style baths. What sets the different Spanish hot springs apart is their falling into one of two categories: paid experiences and free.
In Tarragona, on the 1st Sunday of May, you can witness (or join!) a group of people making the pilgrimage to the healing waters of La Fontcalda. This hot spring, which stays around 24 degrees Celsius (75° F) year-round, has long been believed to have curative properties. This has been attributed both to the water and to the church attached to the springs.
Another unique experience available to anyone is Las Charcas Mud Baths. Here, locals and travelers alike wade into the spring to cover themselves in highly enriched mud. They then leave the water to allow the mud coating to dry. Both of these locations have access to amazing views, allowing for mental relaxation as well as physical treatment.
Other free spots to bath in hot springs include:
- Las Pozas de Arnedillo in Arnedillo, Spain
- Aigües Termals de Montanejos (only free during the off-season) in Castellón, Spain
- As Burgas in Galicia, Spain
- Roman Caldaria of Bande in Bande, Spain
- Pozas A Chavasqueira in Ourense, SpainTermas de Alhama in Granada, Spain
- Zújar hot springs in Granada, Spain
- Terme Muiño da Veiga in Ourense, Spain
- Alhama de Aragón thermal lake in Zaragoza, Spain
- Manantial the Estany Tarragona, Spain
If you’re looking for a hot springs experience that includes some pampering, these balnearios will be a perfect fit. One that has all the bells and whistles is Balneario de Zújar, a hotel and spa where hot springs are just one of the many things that lead to ultimate relaxation.
The resort is located in Granada and unless you’re there to experience the greater culture, there’s no reason you have to leave the grounds. You can stay at the hotel, eat at the specialty restaurant, book massages in the spa, and finish your day watching the sunset from the thermal pools.
Another luxurious way to take the waters is in Ourense. Here you’ll find Termas de Outariz, a Japanese-style hot springs treatment center. There are multiple pools with mineral water to bathe in, a fully stocked sushi restaurant, massages, and facial treatments. The only thing you can’t do at Termas de Outariz is stay the night. There are no rooms to rent at the center.
Other premium hot springs experiences include:
- Graena Spa in Granada
- Lanjarón Spa in Granada
- Alange spa in Extremadura
- Balneario de Lugo in Galicia
- Balneario de Archena in Murcia
- Balneario de Panticosa in Huesca
If you’re visiting Spain to experience the hot springs and Roman baths, you have an embarrassment of riches to choose from. Immerse yourself in the Spanish culture, eat the fantastic food at hole-in-the-wall cafes, and experience ultimate relaxation whether you pay for the baths or not.
Learn more about visiting Spain on our sister site, La Vida Nomad.