Among the many reasons to visit Budapest, Hungary, there's one that stands out the most. Known as the "City of Baths" and "Spa City," Budapest is particularly unique for being the only remaining capital city in the world with healing thermal waters. Because the city sits on almost 125 thermal springs, there's a variety of bath houses to soak at during your trip.
Aside from the ever popular Szechenyi Baths, the Gellért Baths are also worth the visit, with their breathtaking cathedral-like architecture. The bath and spa complex, part of the famous Hotel Gellért, offers 12 different pools, including an indoor swimming pool and thermal bath and an outdoor wave pool and thermal pool. Even the swimming pool is naturally warm at around 80 degrees.
The hot spring water is said to have therapeutic properties (calcium, magnesium, hydrogen-carbonate, sulphate-chloride, and sodium) that can aid with arthritis, circulatory problems, joint diseases, and more.
Because the US dollar is strong in Hungary, spa fees are especially affordable. General admission for adults is $18 to $20 depending on day of use. Guests can also enjoy a range of spa services including massages and red wine baths. Even the most expensive treatment ("Lavender Dream") is at a reasonable $69, compared to the standard entry fee at Iceland's Blue Lagoon ($54).
So if you ever find yourself in Budapest, make sure you don't miss Gellért! Check out what the baths look like.