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Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Spas of Hungary

Since I have been visiting my friends in Hungary, we have managed to visit a few of the hundreds of thermal water spas that abound in most areas of the country. Mezőberény where my friends live, does not have an organised spa facility, just a town swimming pool with therlmal water supply and nearby, there is a well frequented stand pipe. From the tap by the roadside, water flows constantly at around 30C, year round, twenty four hours a day. Townsfolk come with their jugs and bottles to fill up at this free tap. The water, as is all of Hungary's thermal water that I have seen, the colour of weak tea and not at all unpleasant to taste.
The nearest developed spa to Mezőberény is at Gyula near the castle and here, we have spent a great and relaxing time in one or other of the pools. At a spa like this, there are “Wellness” clinics, where one can have a massage or other treatments, but generally most people just enjoy a leisurely soaking in the tea-coloured waters, swimming with the circulating currents or standing under powerful showers that pummel and refresh the body. It is easy to lose ones sense of time and just meditate while watching others doing the same. After dark in the evening, the atmosphere is wonderful, steam rises, the moon and stars shine down on us while we continue relaxing, vaguely aware of the conversations going on around us before finally, making our way to the showers and the changing rooms.

Earlier in the year we visited the spa at Miskolctapolca which is built into the natural limestone and is very attractive and popular. http://www.thermaltours.hu/furdo_eng.php?furd_azon=105&hir_azon=105

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