Best Hot Springs In The World: Top 5 Natural Spas, According To Experts

It is believed that hot springs have been around since as many as 10,000 years ago. These natural wonders of the world, also known as hydrothermal pools, are produced when geothermal heated groundwater emerges from the Earth’s interior. With their warm water and beautiful natural surroundings, the best hot springs in the world have become a popular must-see tourist attraction.

Hot springs offer a natural oasis of relaxation and healing, renowned for their therapeutic benefits. The warm, mineral-rich waters can soothe sore muscles, alleviate stress, and improve circulation. Additionally, the mineral content in hot springs is believed to provide skin benefits, making a dip in these rejuvenating pools a holistic and revitalizing experience.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing dip or an adventure in the great outdoors, the hot springs entice visitors to experience their healing powers and connect with the beauty of nature. For those wanting more natural remedies for their mental and physical health, these spas nestled in nature are the perfect place to start.

Below we have compiled a list of the top five best hot springs around the world. Not to mention, these remarkable springs are typically found in destinations that may already be on your travel bucket list. So go ahead and take a dip in these hot springs, because they’re sure to provide the perfect blend of warmth and relaxation like no other! If we missed one, let us know in the comments.

The List: Best Hot Springs in the World, According to Experts

1. Takaragawa Onsen, Japan

Takaragawa Onsen, located in the striking Gunma Prefecture of Japan, is a remarkable destination for those seeking a peaceful and therapeutic escape. “As integral to the culture as sushi and sake, onsen are quasi-spiritual spaces, and for sheer natural beauty it’s hard to beat Takaragawa,” writes GQ Magazine.

Takaragawa Onsen resort in Japan
Takaragawa Onsen resort in Japan (Photo by Michael Sum on Unsplash)

Nestled among the gorgeous scenery of the Japanese alps, Takaragawa onsen stands out for its picturesque layout and traditional style, making visitors feel as though they have stepped back in time. “While visitors come for the healing waters, they stay for the breathtaking views,” adds The Discoverer.

These natural baths are a star attraction, with their sublime waters enriched by minerals beneficial to human skin and health, providing a rejuvenating and relaxing experience for visitors. As Iron Mountain Hot Springs notes that “Takaragawa Onsen in Japan has been used for its medicinal waters from ancient times.” With the tranquil atmosphere and sound of the nearby river, it’s no surprise Takaragawa Onsen in considered one of Japan’s most beloved hot springs.

2. Chena Hot Springs, Alaska

Located in the heart of Alaska’s interior, Chena Hot Springs is a unique destination for visitors seeking a one-of-a-kind experience. “Situated in the Alaskan wilderness surrounded by enchanting forests and mountains – a landscape that offers a Narnia-like experience in the winter from the steamy comfort of a 41℃ outdoor lake or hot tub,” illustrates CEO Magazine. With its snow-covered trees and fascinating northern lights, Chena Springs will make you feel like you’ve been transported into a mystical world of awe.

Chena Hot Springs in Alaska
Chena Hot Springs in Alaska (Photo by joojoob27 on Shutterstock)

Located about 60 miles northeast of Fairbanks, this unique location allows for an exceptional view of the northern lights. “When it comes to aurora hunting, Chena Hot Springs offers one of the coziest places in Alaska,” boasts Travel & Leisure Magazine.

Chena Springs also offers its own resort, home to the Aurora Ice Museum. “Crafted from over 1,000 tons of ice and snow, where you can sip an appletini at the famous ice bar,” writes Condé Nast, where the real relaxation takes place!

3. Cascate del Mulino, Italy

Famous for their rolling hills, delectable wine, and charming villages, there are few places in the world as beautiful as Tuscany, Italy. Cascate del Mulino, one of the most well-known hot springs in all of Italy, is equally as perfect as the landscape surrounding it. “The waterfalls are naturally brimming with sulfur and other minerals thought to cure ailments since the Roman era and are situated just outside of the village of Saturnia,” writes Travel & Leisure.

Cascate del Mulino
Cascate del Mulino Hot Springs (Photo by Ulf Meyer on Unsplash)

Located on the ground of an old mill, there is deep history associated with this enchanting hot spring. “Born from a crater, according to mythology, the god Saturn is believed to have created with his thunderbolt, the thermal water is rich in sulfur and beneficial minerals for the lungs and cardiovascular system,” claims CEO Magazine.

The beautiful site is characterized by its cascading waterfalls and rich mineral water. Iron Mountain Hot Springs says, “The water fills a large thermal pool at the resort, which has four hot-spring pools, waterfalls, Jacuzzis, warm and cold-water courses, and a spa boutique. At Mulino, visitors soak in naturally carved rock wells near waterfalls.” Cascate del Mulino attracts visitors from across the world and is a must-see destination for anyone traveling to Tuscany.

4. Pamukkale Thermal Pools, Turkey

The breathtaking beauty of the Pamukkale Thermal Pools is something that cannot be missed, “These iconic white terraces with crystal-clear blue water are one of the nation’s most popular tourist attractions and this is partly a result of the site’s location, neighboring the Roman spa city of Hierapolis where ancient ruins abound,” says CEO Magazine.

Pamukkale Thermal Pools
Pamukkale Thermal Pools (Photo by Kubilay Bal on Unsplash)

Pamukkale, which translates to “cotton castle,” refers to the shimmering cotton-like limestone that towers over the hot calcium filled mineral pools, “This natural wonder was so admired by the Ancient Greeks and Romans that they constructed the city of Hierapolis at the top of the mountain,” states LuxLife Magazine. Based in Denizli Province, this cotton castle offers 17 tiered pools of turquoise water contained in frosted limestone formations.

Originally designed as a Roman spa resort where Cleopatra herself is believed to have bathed, Pamukkale is the place to relax like royalty. Nearby, “The Cleopatra pool, also known as the Pamukkale Antique Pool; it’s said to have been a gift from Marc Antony to the pharaoh herself,” writes Condé Nast. Pamukkale’s beauty has also landed itself a spot as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, leaving no question why it’s such a prized destination for many.

5. Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Arguably one of the most famous hot springs in the world, the Blue Lagoon in Iceland is as relaxing as it is breathtaking. The lagoon is situated in a volcanic landscape and was formed when excess water from a geothermal power plant was released into the surrounding area. This naturally formed pool contains “mineral-rich waters that are also good for the skin, while the warm vapors clear all manner of toxins from the body,” writes Trip Savvy.

The Blue Lagoon in Iceland
The Blue Lagoon in Iceland (Photo by Jeff Sheldon on Unsplash)

The lagoon is perfect for those seeking relaxation. With its healing properties and Instagram-worthy landscape, “There are also other ways to pamper yourself, like in-water massages, mud mask bars, and other skin-enhancing treatments. A small café sits at the center of the lagoon offering various beverages from beer and wine to healthy smoothies,” exclaims The Discoverer.

The Manual says it best, “The Blue Lagoon is one of those forever bucket-list items that travel enthusiasts need to experience first-hand.” I can attest to this; I visited several years ago, and I am already planning my trip back!

Leave us a comment and let us know which hot spring is on your bucket list!

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations.