Imagine steamy, hot water that flows over rocks from which you can see only nature, fields, or woods. Tuscany has this in its hot springs, and some of them are free and open. There is no ticket to pay, they are open air and you can visit them any time you want: day or night, winter or summer.
Don’t forget to bring an old swim suite, don’t even think about having a bath with your favorite bikini. The smell of the sulphurous water is too strong and it remains even if you wash your swim suite a hundred times!
Have you ever been to any of these hot springs? Don’t forget to tell us which one is your favorite and share your story with other travelers!
What in traditional towns is a main square, in Bagno Vignoni is a huge thermal pool, but you can’t jump in there! Try the Parco dei Mulini for a free bath just steps away (photo).
Here is the video of Siena and Bagno Vignoni. They are absolutely amazing:
The thermal baths, probably well known even in Etruscan times, were definitely enjoyed by the Romans as testified by a plaque located under the arcade of the church of Santa Caterina, which indicates the consecrating of these waters to the Nymphs. Thanks to their close vicinity to Via Francigena, important thoroughfare which connected northern Europe to the Italic peninsular, these baths became more and more popular during the medieval period.
Bagno Vignoni became a halting and refreshment point for the numerous pilgrims who traveled the Via Francigena on their way to Rome, one of the main destinations for the Christian pilgrimages. The thermal waters of Vignoni were used both for personal hygiene and for curing numerous illnesses. For this reason the spa also became a popular resort for famous dignitaries like Pope Pio II Piccolomini and Lorenzo il Magnifico.
Read more about Bagno Vignoni hot springs.
Bagni di San Filippo
San Filippo is only half an hour away from Bagno Vignoni and it has a similar past: the waters of San Filippo were known by Romans, became famous in Middle Ages, treated famous people like Lorenzo il Magnifico and other princes of the Medici family.
In the heart of the Val d’Orcia, San Filippo is characterized by suggestive calcareous sediments made by the hot sulphurous water.
Only outside the small town, in the forest you can choose between a a pool carved in rock or you can cross a small bridge and take a mud bath.
This is the most popular thermal bath of Tuscany, probably because it’s the closest to Florence.
The water is around 42°C (107 F) and the contrast of cold air in the winter and the hot water is a really great experience. The pools are located below ruined walls, the only remnants of fortified Roman thermal baths.
In fact when you visit Tuscan hot springs you’ll learn that Romans really loved hot baths! It’s easy to understand why…
One of Tuscany’s famed thermal centers, Saturnia has extremely remote origins. An ancient legend declares it to be the oldest city on the peninsula, dedicated to the Greek, and later Italian, god Saturn. It was developed in Etruscan times before being conquered by the Romans, who organized the town and encircled it with walls, of which a section still remains in the vicinity of Porta Romana.
If you want fresh updates about Saturnia hot springs you can visit their fan page: Cascate del Mulino a Saturnia
Read more about Saturnia Hot Springs