The Top 5 Thermal Spas in the Alps
The mountains have always been home to some of the best thermal spas in the world. The ultimate alpine retreat, there is nothing better than relaxing in a thermal spa after a long day adventuring in the mountains. For hundreds (and in some case thousands) of years, people have flocked to thermal spa towns in search of relaxation, wellness and a well-deserved break from the pressures of everyday life. Following the highly-anticipated reopening of Le Grand Spa Thermal in Brides les Bains, and the upcoming opening of the QC Terme Chamonix Mont-Blanc, we would like to share some of our favourite alpine thermal spas. From the traditional to the contemporary, there is a perfect spa to be found for everyone!
1. QC Terme Monte Bianco, Pre St Didier, Italy
One of the most famous thermal baths in Italy, the Romans have been flocking to the springs of Pre St Didier for over 1000 years. The thermal centre was originally built in 1834, and the three outdoor pools are still fed by the original 38 degree spring. Sitting underneath the striking beauty of the Mont Blanc Massif, the views are incomparable whether you visit in summer or winter. With over 40 spa treatments including saunas, sensory rooms, massage jets, waterfalls, music therapy, cold plunge pools and salt rooms just to name a few, even without the added extras of a massage or facial there is plenty to do in the spa.
2. Le Grand Spa Thermal, Brides les Bains, France
Sitting in the heart of the beautiful Les Trois Valleés ski area, Brides les Bains has been welcoming visitors to its famous springs since the 16th century. Recently re-opened after a €17 million renovation, Le Grand Spa Thermal is now the biggest spa in France. Over 2000m2 in size, the main area of the spa is an aquatic area with a lap pool, jacuzzis, bubble beds and an entire underwater circuit with massage jets focusing on different areas of the body. As the spa has a focus on wellbeing and physical health, two 700m2 areas are set aside for treatments and activities dedicated to wellness such as facials, massages and beauty treatments. This spa is not to be missed if you are holidaying in Meribel and Courchevel in Les Trois Valleés.
3. Miramonti Hotel and Spa, Avelengo, Italy
If you are in the South Tyrol region of Italy, this is truly an experience that cannot be missed. The husband and wife team who run this hotel have struck the perfect balance between sophisticated contemporary design and understated luxury to create one of the most visually stunning and relaxing spas we have had the pleasure of visiting. The infinity pool has some of the most spectacular views you will ever lay eyes on and the glass-fronted sauna is hidden in the heart of the forest. Guests of the Miramonti who would like to soak in some thermal baths are granted free access to Terme Merano, which is a short 10-minute drive away.
4. Walliser Alpentherm & Spa, Leukerbad, Switzerland
Whilst the charming village of Leukerbad is known for its many thermal spas, this one is without a doubt the best. In the village centre, the outdoor pool is one of the most impressive thermal pools in the world. Fed from the St Laurent spring, the pool has a constant temperature of nearly 40 degrees with a variety of showers, massage jets, and bubble beds making it easy to while away the hours. The spa also has a “sauna village” - number of different saunas in traditional Valais chalets including a herbal sanarium, infusion sauna and stone bath. Add to this the phenomenal mountain views and it is easy to see why so many visitors continue to flock to the mountain spa.
5. Alpentherme Gastein, Austria
One of the biggest spas in Austria at a staggering 32,000m2, the Alpentherme Gastein truly has something to offer for everyone. Families are well catered for with 4 different water slides, a lazy river, a baby & toddler zone and an outdoor play area. Those looking to unwind and relax can head to the designated quite zones where spring-fed hot pools are fitted with jets, waterfalls and bubble baths to soothe all your aches and pains whilst taking in the panoramic views. There are also sun terraces, a lap pool and a separate ‘sauna world’ with several saunas and plunge pools to dive into when the heat gets to be too much.
One to look forward to!
QC Terme Chamonix Mont Blanc, Chamonix, France
QC Terme Spas and Resorts are responsible for some of the most iconic spas in Europe, and the new spa in the famous alpine resort of Chamonix is one of the most anticipated spa openings in the world. The spa is nestled on the valley floor and has stunning views of the peaks and glaciers of the Mont Blanc Massif. Not to be missed, there are 30 wellness practices to experience throughout the spa all culminating in the infinity pool which reflect a breath-taking view of the Bossons Glacier. Set to open on August 22, 2018, it is sure to be one of the best spa experiences in the Alps!
For thousands of years, people have been making the pilgrimage to thermal springs to take advantage of the healing properties of the mineral-rich waters. Taking time out to unwind and relax is more important than ever as our fast-paced lives, and after a day in the mountains there is nothing quite like the experience of a thermal spa to help one rest, rejuvenate and feel new again.
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