Thermal Baths in Tuscany - My Trip

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Dear Friends,

Whatever time of the year you plan to visit Tuscany, taking a dip in the many hot springs scattered throughout the region is certainly a good idea to relax and unwind, especially after a day of sightseeing in one of Tuscany’s captivating cities.

A multitude of thermal spas can be found throughout the region, from the north to the south. I reckon those located in the south to be the most beautiful and, moreover, they are often free and situated amid unique landscapes.

In this article, I would like to focus on the major springs, so that during your visit to Tuscany, you will be able to find a spa resort close to your holiday accommodation.

Terme di Saturnia

Located in the south west of Tuscany, the hot springs of Saturnia are arguably the most spectacular of its kind (see photo) due to its extraordinary natural environment. These baths can be enjoyed all year round and access is free. However, I recommend visiting them during spring and summer. If you do visit the baths during wintertime, it is best to opt for the paid services such as robes, showers and heated pools that will enable you to fully enjoy the experience. Visit the spectacular towns of Pitigliano and Sovana, which are located near the thermal baths and are most definitely worth a trip


Chianciano Terme 

The springs of Chianciano have long been the most famous thermal baths of Tuscany, the therapeutic properties of which have been known since ancient times. Located in south east of Tuscany and very close to the town of Montepulciano, Chianciano Terme was one of film director Federico Fellini’s favourite summer retreats. The 70s and 80s of the twentieth century were its peak years, as Chianciano Terme has unfortunately fallen somewhat out of favour due to the withdrawal of state subsidies.

Despite the state of slight decay, the hot springs remain active and continue to attract tourists due to their cleansing and therapeutic properties. If you plan on visiting de Chianciano Terme area during the winter months, it is advisable to take a dip in the new sensory spas, a very modern type of spa where you can spend a couple of hours enjoying the facilities of this unique setting.


Springs of Montepulciano

Situated a few miles from the town of Montepulciano in the south east of Tuscany, these springs are particularly beneficial to those suffering from respiratory diseases. The baths are thus a popular destination for locals who do treatments to improve their allergies or their pulmonary pathologies. Moreover, thanks to its high levels of sulfur, these baths are also recommended for lumbago or backache.


San Filippo springs

The springs of Bagni San Filippo boast a beautiful natural setting between Tuscany and Lazio on the Monte Amiata in the far south of Tuscany. Access to the thermal baths is free and the forest in which they are located can be explored on foot. Accordingly, the San Filippo springs are especially enjoyable during summer when you can easily combine a relaxing stroll through the green woods of Mount Amiata (which was once a volcano) and enjoy the sulfuric waters flowing through the forest.

The Bagni San Filippo are the ideal pastime for a hot summer day, but there are also paid facilities to enjoy the hot springs during winter days. These springs are less modern than the sensory spa of Chianciano Terme or the baths of Bagno Vignoni. Val d 'Orcia and other picturesque villages are situated in the vicinity of the San Filippo springs, offering a unique scenic backdrop to the springs.


Thermal baths of Fonteverde

Not far from the Terme San Filippo are the Terme di Fonteverde, also in the south of Tuscany. Entrance to these hot springs is not free, so you will have to pay a fee in order to enjoy them. As the springs are situated in a spectacular landscape close to Mount Amiata, they are well worth a visit. A few miles from these thermal baths is the village of Cetona, known for being one of the summer resorts of the Agnelli family (the current owners Ferrari and Fiat).


Bagno Vignoni 

The hot springs of Bagno Vignoni are one of the most beautiful natural pools where you can enjoy both the spring and the gorgeous scenery in which they are situated.

You can reach this town via a beautiful drive through the Val d'Orcia and parking is relatively easy. This small town was very popular in the Middle Ages and still remains its old charm. Following the stream from the pool at the medieval town square from which it emanates, the waters reach a natural pool just south of the village.

For those who visit this town during the winter months, there are two hotels to enjoy the hot springs. The first is Hotel Posta where you can enjoy the spring water in a beautiful pool overlooking the valley for €15. The second, and far more expensive, is the Hotel Adelaer Termae – a luxury five star hotel where you have to phone in advance to be able to access the amazing hot springs. The reason for booking an appointment is because the pool’s capacity is limited so access to the pool depends on the number of hotel guests.

Rapolano Terme 

Moving a bit further north but staying south of the province of Siena, I highly recommend a visit to the beautiful spa of San Giovanni or Querciolaia found in the village of Rapolano.

Rapolano is easily accessible via the motorway Siena-Pergugia passing through this township. These springs can be visited any time of the year at a very attractive price (about 10-15 euros per person / day). The baths of Querciolaia are somewhat older than those of San Giovanni, but are lovely to enjoy during winter due to its location within the village of Replano, while the San Giovanni springs are best during summer. Very close to these springs in the direction of Siena is one of the most beautiful landscapes in the area, the Crete Senesi.

Monsummano Terme

Continuing our tour to the north of Tuscany, we find the spas of Monsummano not far from Florence in the province of Pistoia. These springs enjoy an exquisite location and an entrance fee is required. Unlike the southern springs, the Monsumano Terme are found within a caves an visiting them is a truly unique experience.

The Baths of North Tuscany

Like the Chianciano Terme, the Terme di Montecatini are historic hot springs that were tremendously popular during the seventies and eighties. But unlike Chianciano, Montecatini has been well-maintained due to its proximity to Versilia, the Tuscan region famous for its nightlife and the celebrities and royals vacationing here. The Montecatini Terme are known for their healing properties, in particular for the liver and lungs. The rest of the hot springs in the area north of Lucca and Versilia are concentrated in three major spas: the Baths of Versilia, the Baths of Lucca and the Baths of Pisa. The Baths of Pisa are particularly popular because they are in a spectacular 18th century palace, where nobles from all over Europe have come for centuries to enjoy its healing properties. The building in itself is a tourist attraction worth visiting. In contrast to the spas in the south of Tuscany, all spas require an admittance fee.


Dear friends, I would like to conclude with those springs. I hope, as always, to provide some useful information to help you organize your trip to Tuscany.

Best regards, 
Giorgio
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