Everybody knows how great Italy’s beaches are for a holiday in the summer. But the Belpaese also hosts an incredible number of sulphur hot springs, which can be found throughout the country and are perfect for a dip in any season. Let’s see how and where to find Italy’s best hot springs!
Thanks to its geological properties, Italy is full of natural hot springs, which are rich in sulphur and a variety of minerals. The water flowing in these baths boasts endless health and beauty benefits, which will surely attract women and people suffer from different condition. However anyone can find in these baths the perfect place to relax body and mind and enjoy their holidays, whether staying in the north or the south. The best part is that many hot springs, natural pools and thermal parks in Italy haven’t been tapped by spas and are therefore totally free!
Saturnia, Grosseto (Tuscany)
The steaming hot water of Saturnia, in Tuscany, runs down from Mount Amiata and the beautiful hills of the Maremma region: they are probably one of Italy’s best hot springs. Rich in sulphure, these waters collect in the calcareous rock pools at the mount feet, forming a natural bath which was loved by Ancient Romans. The legend has it that the Roman God Saturn, tired from all the wars created by men, sent a lightening on Earth and created these ivory white springs to pacify mankind. Anyway, due to a malaria outbreak occured in the 16th century, the Baths of Saturnia were completely forgotten until the 19th century. Saturnia is possibly the most famous hot spring in Italy: nowadays thousands of locals and tourists come to enjoy its curative waters and roll in its sulphur-rich mud, famous to lower blood pressure and treating skin diseases and rheumatisms. Saturnia’s baths are divided into two areas: one offers paid treatments, while the other hosts free wild springs.
Ischia: Sorgeto and Fumarole (Campania)
Beside being one of the most beautiful islands in Southern Italy, Ischia is famous for its thermal springs. The island has of course a number of expensive spas, but tourists can also enjoy beautiful free areas to have a dip in its curative, hot waters! The best two free hot springs in Ischia are called Fumarole and Sorgeto.
Fumarole Hot Springs can be easily reached with a walk from Sant’Angelo district. The waters here give out a special steam that can even come out from the ground, through the sand! That is why so many people sleeps on the sand during summer nights, to enjoy the nature with friends!
Sorgeto’s hot springs are a bit different: its waters come out from the seabed with a temperature of 90°C (194°F) so be very careful when dipping your feet in the sea! To reach these hot springs there are around 200 steps to take, so consider this if you are traveling with kids or people with walking problems.
Fosso Bianco, Tuscany
Also known as “Bagni San Filippo” (St. Phillip’s Baths), the Fosso Bianco natural pools is just at the confluence of different hot springs. The waterfalls of Fosso Bianco fall down hitting a calcium-carbonate encrusted rock-face, to end in a natural basins below. These natural baths are perfect to visit anytime of the year. A leafy path will take you down to the so called “white-whale” (the widest calcium formation of the area), where the white-blue water makes a nice contrast with the green and copper shades of the surrounding woods. With a nice temperature 48°C, the water of Bagni San Filippo allows you to have a dip also in the winter season.
If you are enjoying a holiday in Sicily and you want to relax in nature, take a boat and reach the Aeolian Island of Vulcano. Here you will find “Mud Lake” thermal springs and mud baths which are known as a treatment for muscles, joint and bone pains and as a skin beauty treatment! The white steams coming up from the fumaroles create a stunning contrast with the dark sands of Sicily: sit down in the natural basins and relax your body and mind in the nature.
Bagni di Bormio, Lombardy
If your holidays bring you in the north of Italy, or if you have business to do in Milan, take a day off and head to the medieval town of Bormio.Here you will find three resorts, called Old Baths, New Baths and Bormio Spas. The Old Baths are the most fascinating as they are 1000 thousand years old! They feature a pool in an ancient roman tunnel and a spectacular view of the white tops of the Western Dololomites.