In the month of wellness, spa and relaxation, we are showing you eight destinations surrounded by nature, ideal to get a good rest and enjoy first-class facilities.
Wellness is defined as the balance between spiritual, mental and physical health; a sense of overall satisfaction. This concept is more and more valued every day and has positioned as a top priority lately, as a consequence of the situation we are going through. There are plenty of methods, treatments and places that foster wellness and are intended to cause that desired state of relaxation, pleasure and well-being. But, what if all this is offered by nature itself?
Straight from the underground layers of the Earth, water which is 5°C warmer than on the surface springs, and its minerals offer a wide range of benefits for body and soul. These are the famous thermal waters. Argentina offers varied thermal resources and nearly 200 fountains, ranging from hot springs to resorts, which positions our country as the perfect destination to find that vital wealth in areas where renewing energies is commonplace and unplugging becomes easy.
Sulfur, magnesium, calcium, chlorine and bicarbonate are the most usual properties of these mineral waters which may not be magical, but have several good tricks up their sleeve. Or, rather, under the ground. To begin with, by raising the body’s temperature, they eliminate germ, toxins and viruses. They also improve blood circulation and oxygenation, stimulate digestion and metabolism, relax muscles, improve the immune system, offer benefits to the skin and work as treatments to heal wounds and injuries. Quite a long list!
In Argentina, they can be enjoyed even more. Why? Because there are hidden jewels all over the country which offer plenty of benefits in natural open-air environments. Amidst mountains, rivers, rocks and tree tops, relaxation and enjoyment come alone. Below is a description of eight thermal spots immersed in the beautiful Argentine environment.
1. Río Hondo Hot Springs, Santiago del Estero
A classic in Argentina. In the last years, the city of Río Hondo in Santiago del Estero changed its proposal and currently positions itself among the major tourism spots in our country. In a nutshell, Río Hondo is the destination with the greatest number of hot spring wells in Latin America. This turns it into an ideal spot for resting, renewing our energies and coming back to our daily activities completely afresh.
About an hour’s ride from the capital of the province, apart from Thermal Tourism, this city offers great sports proposals – the golf course at the Termas de Río Hondo Golf Club, designed by Robert Trent Jones II, the famous American architect’s son, which has been one of the must-see attractions of Sports Tourism in Argentina since its opening in 2018 – as well as first-rate hotel facilities, one of the most advanced car racetracks in the area, the Automobile Museum, a modern airport and, needless to say, the warmth of its people. In Termas, enjoyment and good lifestyle are certainly guaranteed.
2. Cacheuta Hot Springs, Mendoza
On the shore of the Mendoza River and less than an hour’s car-ride from the City of Mendoza, there is a Thermal Water Park that didn’t take long to become one of the major must-see attractions in the province because, besides its thermal water appeal, it offers an additional overly seductive component: its location at the foot of the Andes Mountains.
Over ten stone water pools surrounded by green vegetation invite visitors to dive into warm 100% natural melt waters, featuring various hydrotherapies and temperatures ranging from 20°C to 43°C, surrounded by a dream-like landscape which combines the open air, the Andes foothills, plenty of green, rocks, water and vapor.
Close to the water pools, two activities supplement the relaxation getaway: various mud therapy treatment alternatives and two Vaporariums where, by inhaling the vapors from the water springs, both body and skin get detoxified, which helps the respiratory system.
3. Federación Hot Springs, Entre Ríos
Located by the Uruguay River, in the northeast of Entre Ríos, this is another great classic in a province with a long thermal water tradition. It was built just over 40 years ago to replace the old city that bore the same name, which disappeared when the Salto Grande Dam was built.
The idea of rebuilding the city had the desired effect: today, it is a symbol of warm waters and, whenever visitors think of a spa center, Federación is foremost in their minds. All of this is the consequence of the effort made by its people and the vision of the province of creating a great tourism, modern and hospitable destination.
So if you pop round these blessed land, a must-do is having some mate with croissants by the promenade, during the golden hour!
4. Sáenz Peña Hot Springs, Chaco
Known as La Termal, this iconic city has a great location in the geographic center of Chaco, which makes it possible to travel fast to Resistencia –the capital of the province- or to other tourism centers, such as Campo del Cielo –an amazing place where a meteor rain fell four thousand years ago and left valuable pieces which can be seen there today – or El Impenetrable National Park.
Whoever comes to this province and can tour it will realize that Sáenz Peña is the right place to take a deep breath and enjoy life. And, as an added value, it offers the legacy of the foreign communities that settled in this place decades ago and today are an example of cultural diversities living together.
Chaco is the great Argentine secret and part of that glorious mystery hides under the quiet waters of Sáenz Peña.
5. Copahue Hot Springs, Neuquén
A Thermal Center like very few in the world. Why? Because it is the only one that hosts plenty of quality minerals such as muds, algae, vapors and mineral-medicinal waters in a single place. With an area of over ten thousand square meters, five thermal lagoons, tailor-made health and beauty programs, fumaroles and hot springs, among others, it is the perfect venue for relaxing.
Its volcanic origin causes the healing effects, which date back to the times of the Pehuenches native settlers, who discovered the properties of the soil and had rituals for bathing in the lagoons, which started with an offer to “Aún-Co”, the hot springs’ owner. In mapuche language, Copahue means “place of sulfur”.
Such volcanic action shaped the landscape that, almost 1980 meters above sea level, carries the Patagonian imprint of mountains and magical landscapes. In fact, in 2016, the Termas Nevadas program was launched, which implemented various techniques to take advantage of the hot springs in winter, when access used to be impossible due to the snow accumulated in the surrounding areas. The white landscape decorated with the water vapor is simply a luxury for tourists.
The area offers highly-developed facilities and a wide range of proposals: from therapeutic to skin-care, respiratory, anti-stress and beauty programs, all of which are prescribed by a team of medical professionals, based on each person’s needs: mud masks, hydration, face and hair massages, and many other options are included in a relaxation day in Copahue.
6. Carhué Hot Springs, Buenos Aires
This destination, which gains more and more popularity in Argentine tourism as time goes by, is located on the west end of the Province of Buenos Aires. It displays a perfect blend of the countryside, good climate, asado and relaxation in its warm waters.
Carhué also offers a mysticism and history added value which can hardly be found in other hot spring resorts in our country. Very close to the town are the ruins of the former Epecuén Lake Tourist Villa, a small village which became famous in the 20th century. After a severe flood in 1985, all its streets were devastated. Nowadays, and after the water receded, many tourists arrive to take pictures of the old constructions, which have become architectural treasures. It’s a fascinating journey back in time, filled with stories.
Such is Carhué, a place that allows you to stay to go on to Epecuén, cross to the Province of La Pampa, enjoy the geography of Sierra de la Ventana or simply stop time and unplug.
7. Fiambalá Hot Springs, Catamarca
Let’s now turn to the colors in the north of our country. Amidst reddish rainbows drawn on the ground and falls from the Andes Mountain sides, these thermal waters are considered one of the major tourism attractions in Catamarca. Their relaxing properties, highly beneficial for the body, work as the perfect incentive for tourism. The scenery, however, offers the final touch.
The temperature of its waters, contained in 14 pools ecologically built in such a way that they camouflage with the environment, goes from 28° C to as much as 50° C. They are classified according to their components: sulfate, hyperthermal and alkaline, among others. A peaceful oasis, 1,550 meters above sea level and just 12 kilometers from the city of Fiambalá.
8. Del Jordán Hotsprings, Jujuy
Red, green and turquoise colors live in perfect harmony in Del Jordán Hotsprings: natural wells up to two meters deep, hidden in the yunga forests, which can easily hypnotize anybody trying to discover them.
This wonder, unknown to many, hides in the district of San Francisco – less than 20 km south of Valle Grande – in Jujuy. Its main feature is its color. Due to the large amounts of sulfur and minerals in the water (which reaches 30°) the pure blue and green color contrasts with the shades of the surrounding vegetation and results in a movie-like landscape. Sounds a lot better than any other spa, doesn’t it? The most important water pool in the area is “Laguna Azul”. Stunning? Not enough. The best time to go? Between April and October, to avoid the rainy season, which is typical in the area.