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Budapest Spa History

Budapest – Capital of the Baths

A paradise for lovers of wellness and health spa guests

Let yourself be charmed by this city of unique thermal baths. Budapest is the biggest spa city in Europe. More than 30,000 cubic metres of hot healing water gushes out from over 120 springs daily. Twenty one baths, of which 15 are health spas, are available throughout the city. And in addition to wellness and spa treatments, Budapest has a lot to offer:

  • impressive architecture and interesting sights to see
  • a vibrant cultural scene and sophisticated coffee house culture
  • a gorgeous landscape
  • a wide range of sports and possibilities for entertainment.

The Romans already knew how to harness the healtful effects of the thermal waters in Budapest. The oriental bath became popular with the Turks, but the spa city of Budapest reached its peak at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries. The hitherto rather simple bathhouses were transformed into monumental representative showpieces or rebuilt during this time. The most famous and historical of them are located in the Buda district.

The Budapest Baths are Worth a Visit

Budapest Baths

The thermal baths in Budapest are fed by various mineral spring sources and are utilised in the treatment of many ailments and illnesses. Each bath has its own charm, unique history and its individual tradition.

Gellért Baths and Spa

Built in the Art Nouveau style, the Gellért Baths is probably the most famous bathhouse in Budapest. It is located next to the traditional Hotel Gellért, in the centre of the city, and has a very long and grand history. The water from Gellért Hill was already being used in the 13th century. The Gellért Bath was built in 1918. It has the world’s oldest wave pool and spacious indoor and outdoor areas. It offers various swimming and thermal pools as well as steam baths. The wide range of therapeutic measures available is known throughout the world and highly treasured.

Széchenyi Thermal Bath

It was not until their discovery in 1879 that the 75°C hot thermal springs which are used in the Széchenyi baths, are the hottest of Budapest. The thermal bath is located in the Pest part of the city and it is one of the largest public baths in Europe. The Széchenyi Thermal Bath offers various outdoor and indoor pools with different water temperatures, two saunas, a steam bath and a hot room with temperatures up to a maximum of 55°C. The bath also offers an exercise bath or a bath for physiotherapy treatments and mud treatments, as well as a range of different therapy and wellness services.

Rudas Thermal Bath

The Rudas Thermal Bath has been on the Danube since 1550. It is the oldest and perhaps the most beautiful of all the baths in Budapest that were built by the Turks. The main pool is covered by a dome, which is supported by eight red marble columns. There are four small pools in the corners with different water temperatures. Due to its octagonal shape, the middle pool alone is very distinct. Moreover, the Rudas Thermal Bath is extraordinary in every respect, as it was reserved for men only until 2006. Since then, women and men have bathed separately on weekdays. In addition, the Rudas Thermal Bath is open on Fridays and Saturdays until 4 am.

Király Thermal Baths

The Király Thermal Baths are over 400 years old and were built at the time of the Pasha of Buda, Arslan (meaning “lion”) and his successor, Sokoli Mustafa. Unlike other thermal baths in Budapest, it does not have its own natural source of hot water. Springs from the Lukács Thermal Baths also supply the Király Thermal Baths. Thus, the Turks created a thermal bath within the fortress ring, so that even in the case of a siege bathing would still be possible. After the reconquest of Buda by the Habsburgs, the Király family took over the running of the thermal baths. As is the case with the Rudas Thermal Baths, the original Turkish character has been largely preserved in the Király Thermal Baths.

Lukács Thermal Bath

The waters of the Lukács Thermal Bath are rumoured to be some of the most efficacious healing waters in Budapest. As early as the 12th century, the Knights of the Order of Saint John, who specialised in caring for the sick, had settled in the area of today’s baths. Later, the Knights of Rhodes and Malta took over the settlement and built a bath next to their monasteries. The numerous votive tablets in the site’s courtyard (which must not be missed) testify to the former splendour of the bath as an internationally-renowned therapeutic spa.

Thermal Water on Margaret Island

Margaret Island, in the centre of Budapest, is not only the most famous Danube island in the city but it also has its own thermal springs and is a special recreational area for the city’s population thanks to its well-kept parkland. Our Ensana Health Spa Hotels, Thermal Margaret Island and Grand Margaret Island, which stand on the foundations of the former Margaret Baths, are also located here. The healing water used in the hotels’ spa areas comes from the island’s three natural healing springs. Here we offer you healing and wellness treatments, steam baths, Jacuzzis, saunas as well as an aroma cabins.

Wellbeing and Health

Hungary and, in particular Budapest, are non-pareil it when it comes to a healing, wellness or recreational holiday. The plethora of what’s available will cater any taste and the beneficial effects of the many spring sources ensure healing, well-being and health.

Take a look at what we have to offer – you’ll be amazed at what there is for you.

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