Budapest is the hub of thermal baths since the 13th century, when they discovered numerous hot springs. The healing properties of thermal water has been worldwide known. Many visitors seek for remedy for their health problems or just want to unwind after a busy day. There is one important aspect about taking a dip in the water, and it is public bathing, when everybody is relaxing in the water together.
Don’t be surprised when people you don’t know start talking to you. This is normal. It is part of the culture of public bathing – a shared experience.
The first baths were built during the Ottoman Empire by the Turks. These were mud baths! Sitting in the warm mud must have been fun as well! Since then public bathing became more and more popular.
The way to enjoy the healing properties of thermal water has changed through the centuries. Grandiose buildings were erected around the hot springs to provide a unique cultural experience.
1; Gellert Baths (Gellert furdo)
Perhaps the most impressive is the Gellert Baths when it gets dark outside and the illuminated architecture comes alive inside. It is located in the Danubius Hotel Gellert by the Liberty Bridge on the Buda side of the city. The mineral hot springs supply water to the Gellert Baths since the 13th century. Between 1912 and 1918 the bath complex was built and a water purifying system was installed.
Who wouldn’t like to bath in this spectacular art deco building? Gellert Baths not only attract people to enjoy the healing properties of thermal water, but to treat themselves with a glorious visual experience.
Did you know?
Since 2013, ladies and men can use the baths together!
2; Szechenyi Baths (Szechenyi – gyogyfurdo)
Szechenyi Baths is popular during summer and a fabulous experience at winter. Can you imagine yourself sitting in the warm thermal water and taking in all the details of the surrounding beautiful architecture around you? What an architectural and cultural treat combined with relaxation! There are lots of pools to choose from inside and outside.
Szechenyi Baths is situated in the City Park, just a few minutes away from the city centre by the Millennium Underground Railway.
If you believe it or not, the wells bring up the hot water from 4087 feet (1,246 meters) deep with the temperatures of 74ºC and 77ºC. The outdoor pools are especially spectacular during winter months when the chilled air and the warm water create a floating steam above the pools. Soaking in the hot water and let the healing minerals reach to your bones, while you are taking in the visual splendour. It is an extraordinary experience! It has proven its fame.
Similarly to the Gellert Baths women and men weren’t allowed bathing together in the past. Nowadays, they don’t follow this guidance any more.
3; Rudas Baths (Rudas furdo)
Rudas Baths is completely different than the previous baths. Are you looking for something a bit more authentic and fun? How about bathing at night? Sitting in the warm water while admiring the twinkling lights of Budapest from the Panorama pool in the rooftop. Rudas Baths reopens at night from 10 o’clock until 4 o’clock in the morning on Fridays and Saturdays. There are certain days when only women or men can use the baths. Best to check before. At weekends, men and women can swim and relax together in the water.
Rudas Baths was built by the Turks who took delight in bathing and enjoyed the healing properties of the hot spring water. In recent years, Rudas Baths offers 6 thermal baths and a large swimming pool. Check out the octagonal pool and the Turkish dome. These authentic features make Rudas Baths unique and an attraction to be see.
There are saunas, steam rooms and massage facilities to cater for your needs at every mentioned thermal baths. Make sure you take flip-flops with you!
Bear in mind, if you intend to enjoy the rejuvenating properties of the water at Gellert Baths or Szechenyi Baths look at the maps carefully, as these complexes are fairly big and you can get lost easily.
So, which baths are you going to choose? Are you up for an illuminated architectural spectacle at the Gellert Baths, the glorious Szechenyi Baths at winter season or a night bathing experience with eye-catching views over the city from the Panorama pool at the Rudas Baths?
Try them all one-by-one, as they are all an experience you must experience! Simply Enjoy Travel