Feet emerging from thermal pool against snowy mountainous landscape

Europe’s historic baths and spas are the perfect blend of history and holistic care.

Far from the typical day spas one may find at a lavish hotel, the geothermal hot springs are eco friendly attractions that’ve drawn visitors from around the world for millennia. The Romans adored these hot springs so much that you can find their ancient bathhouses in Italy, Hungary, Britain, and beyond.

When energy efficient travel and eco friendly attractions are a priority of your vacation, Europe’s historic baths offer a way to visit eco friendly tourist destinations without sacrificing fascinating history and supreme pampering near the continent’s greatest cities.

Europe’s Historic Baths

Bath Spa | England

Roman Bath in bath England with blue sky

Britain’s city of Bath is one of the most historic, and eco friendly attractions in the UK. The fantastically preserved Ancient Roman Baths in Bath were constructed nearly 2,000 years ago and still fill with steaming water from the hot springs. Unlike other eco friendly attractions that allow you to dip into the soothing waters, the Roman Baths in Britain offer immersion only through touring the ruins and visiting the dedicated museum.

See Britain’s only natural hot springs for yourself on the Luxury Gold British Royale tour. This 10-day tour brings you to Bath where you can stroll the streets lined with Georgian architecture, visit the Roman Baths and Georgian Pump Room, and enjoy a Michelin-starred meal at Olive Tree Restaurant.


Szechenyi Baths | Hungary

Szechenyi Baths in Budapest

Hungary embraced the continent’s hot springs long after the Romans left behind Budapest’s first baths. Popular sites like the Kiraly and Rudas Baths, the oldest thermal baths in the city, were built by the Ottoman Turks in the 1500s. The geothermal waters were used for royal ritual bathing, but now are open to the public. Baths like Szechenyi, however, highlight the popularity of Hungarian bathing culture in a more modern way. Only a century old, Szechenyi Baths is a gathering place for those seeking holistic aquatic therapies as well as those who just want to splash in the spring waters.

See Budapest’s baths from topside as you cruise the Danube on Luxury Gold’s Harmony of Central Europe tour. Two nights in Budapest will leave you longing to spend more time soaking up this city; though days exploring Prague, Vienna, Krakow, and Warsaw will leave you more than satisfied with Central Europe’s splendor.


The Blue Lagoon | Iceland

Th blue lagoon with footbridge in Iceland

Iceland’s Blue Lagoon is not only one of the most popular eco friendly attractions in the country, it’s also a world-renowned eco friendly attraction. While the Blue Lagoon is a man-made site, its geothermal water is actually runoff from the nearby geothermal power plant that settled in a lava field. Its iconic blue color is the result of the high concentration of silica in the water. Few visit for the science of the site; the Blue Lagoon’s milky waters set against a gorgeous Icelandic sunset are eye-candy for the camera, making its chief draw the obligatory photo op when traveling Iceland for the first time.


Pamukkale pools | Türkiye

Panukkale thermalnhot springs, Turkey

If the Blue Lagoon is Europe’s most mesmerizing bath in the west, then the Pamukkale pools take that title in the east. The Romans used the Pamukkale thermal pools as a spa thousands of years ago and it was far from a fleeting trend. This UNESCO World Heritage Site sees the turquoise spring water cascade over white calcified formations, lending it an otherworldly appearance. The travertine terraces are shallow, making it ideal for visitors of all ages and abilities to enjoy. Near Turkey’s Cotton Castle, as it’s known, are other thermal spas and hot springs, including the ancient Cleopatra’s Pools.

Read next: This hotel has been the peak of luxury for over a century


Evia | Greece

The Greek Islands are far from hidden gems yet even one of the most popular eco friendly tourist destinations in Europe has a few secrets up its sleeve. Edipsos, or Aidipsos, is a spa resort town located on the northern part of Evia island. The thermal spas here have welcomed everyone from today’s celebrity royalty to historical figures like Constantine and Hadrian. Edipsos is home to nearly 100 hot springs, each with varying temperatures. The many resorts surrounding the springs offer holistic treatments just as unique.

Expert selected: The 4 best luxury hotel spas you can visit with Luxury Gold

Relaxation Beyond Europe

Tradition Soaking in Ginzan Onsen | Japan

Nagano snow monkeys in thermal spring, Japan

Europe’s historic baths are soothing, though they’re not the only way to soak in serenity. Thousands of Japan’s natural hot springs, called onsen, offer traditional ways to engage with Japanese culture against amazing backdrops. Ginzan Onsen is one of the most picturesque, particularly in the winter when the stark white snow and wooden Taisho-Era architecture are illuminated by the flickering flames of gas lamps. This eco friendly attraction in Yamagata reveals a different face in the warmer months when the snow thaws and lush green hiking trails lead deep into the mountains.

Luxury Gold invites you to soak in the hot springs of Japan as you explore the classic tradition and exciting modernity of this wonderful country. The Majestic Japan tour includes a visit to the Oirase Gorge where you’ll enjoy a soothing Onsen bath before attending a private VIP sake tasting and brewery tour.

A haven of tranquility: Discovering the best luxury spas in Japan.

Join a Luxury Gold tour today to experience the best of Europe’s historic baths and natural hot springs around the world, in seamless style.