When it comes to relaxation, there are so many ways you can do this. Some people rely on meditation, others a nice relaxing massage and yet for others a nice hot bath with some soothing music and a glass of wine does the trick. I love taking nice long baths especially when the temperatures outside begin to drop. I have been living in Krakow for quite a while but only in this past year I have discovered the Polish Thermal Baths, and I am hooked!
History of Thermae:
Bathing was one of the most common daily activities in Roman culture, and was practiced across a wide variety of social classes. Though many contemporary cultures see bathing as a very private activity conducted in the home, bathing in Rome was a communal activity. While the extremely wealthy could afford bathing facilities in their homes, most people bathed in the communal baths thermae. In some ways, these resembled modern-day spas. The Romans raised bathing to a high art as they socialized in these communal baths.
Thermal Baths in Poland:
Poland being located next to the Tatra Mountains provides a great location for many Thermae, dotting the Polish mountainside. Nestled high up on the Polish mountains one can find many hidden gems! The largest concentration of these places can be found in towns and villages situated near the Tatra Mountains: Bukovina Thermal Baths in Bukowina Tatrzańska, Thermal Baths in Zakopane, Thermal Baths in Szaflary, and Bania Thermal Baths in Białka Tatrzańska. If you are in the mood for a long drive on a gorgeous scenic route, then do make it a point to visit one of these places while in Poland. The best part is that they are not just open in winter, but nowadays even stay open in Spring and Summer, as they double up as water parks when the weather is warm.
My First Visit:
I was there last year in May and even though the snow was almost melted away I had a great time. The thermae are ideal for a day trip if you are interested to visit the Polish Mountain side. This year too we went back in early spring for an afternoon of relaxation. We had started at around 4 pm, from Krakow and had a long drive ahead of us. The highway here is quite nice and there was not much traffic. It was sunny when we left and I had imagined it would be hot and the pool water cold. but au contraire!
When we arrived it was looking as though a storm was brewing and started to worry that we would not be able to enjoy the outdoor pools. We reached around 6 pm and got a two and a half hour ticket which cost us 49zl (roughly 10 Euro). On the property there is a 4 star hotel, therms and a world class spa. It boasts Poland’s largest complex of geothermal pools. The pools vary in sizes and cater to everyone’s needs. I stand at under 5 feet tall, and not a good swimmer so for me the height of the pool was just perfect and I was extremely happy I could walk from end to end in the pool.
We had so much fun and went into all the pools and slides up, down, underground and all. I HIGHLY recommend this place to anyone visiting Krakow and Zakopane area. Truly a relaxing experience! The thermal pools outside did not disappoint as I mentioned earlier there was a storm approaching. In the end it did not rain, but the drop in the temperature just added to the experience. I think safe to say I will be heading back there for a winter edition to jump into the hot water when there will be snow all around. For now here are some of the nice pics from the evening.
Soul : Bathing in the thermal water will bring you peace and harmony
Body: Unique minerals and trace elements make the thermal baths one of a kind.
Beauty: The website claims, that the waters of the Bukovina Thermal Baths will make your skin smooth and beautiful, alleviate skin irritations and help wounds or inflammations to heal better!
Here are some of my pictures from my first hand experience and thank you for reading.