Thermal baths in Val di Chiana senese and Val d’Orcia. How to choose?
Follow me to Valdichiana Senese and Val d’Orcia, UNESCO World Heritage Sites, to discover a wonderful area of Tuscany where the baths have always been part of the local culture and people are really spoilt for choice.
I’ve personally visited 10 locations as part of a Blogger Experience organized by Terre di Benessere in collaboration with Valdichiana Living and Destination Makers.
Terre di Benessere is a project funded by the Mibact (the Ministry of Culture and Tourism in Italy) that promotes a concept of well-being based on the cultural and environmental wealth of each region, as well as on gourmet food and wine and local craft traditions. The project involves 10 municipalities and provinces where beautiful thermal baths and spas are located. After this experience, I’ve got so many things to tell about these areas that I suggest you follow me closely even in the coming months.
Let’s get back to the baths though…
The first thing I have to say about the baths I’ve had the chance to visit and touch by hand (and the rest of the body too) is that each one has its own “personality” that characterizes and differentiates it from the others, and due to these differences, they are all unique in their own way.
I’m now going to tell you something about the “personality” of these places and I’m gonna give you some hints and tips on which thermal bath to choose based on your personality and requirements.
1- Health spas
Beauty and well-being are the immediate results of thermal baths. Yet, some spa resorts offer inhalation, physiotherapy as well as rehabilitation treatments.
Montepulciano Terme & Spa
This spa resort is set in the wonderful area of Montepulciano and it’s a 360 degrees area of well-being, offering both medical and full wellness treatment.
Each environment shows a careful attention to the design and detail, that makes even the path for the treatment of medical conditions pleasing to the eyes. Forgetting about being sick is the first step towards well-being.
The presence of the moon cave with waterfalls, geysers and jacuzzi allow users to have an even “softer” and more intimate experience.
Terme San Filippo
Water flows at the San Filippo baths: the rhythmic sound follows you in every corner of this amazing place, immersed in the wonderful landscape of Val d’Orcia, under the watchful eye of the Mount Amiata. Small rooms host the mud baths, and the mud maturing process takes place in the same location.
Terme di Petriolo
The thermal water of Petriolo springs out at 43°. The heat coming out of the pools, even outdoors, is really strong. This water is rich in mineral salts and has been awarded healing powers for chronic osteoarticular and arthritic diseases as well as skin diseases or breathing problems.
This spa is located in Rapolano Terme, where the waters are able to heal the osteoarticular and respiratory system, as well as the skin, through inhalation and immersion. Mud baths and aerosol therapy are complemented with services of postural gymnastics and rehabilitation treatments in thermal waters.
2 – Luxury and cuddling
Let’s be honest dear female friends who love to spoil themselves: many of us think of thermal baths when they want to spend a couple of days being cuddled with massages, the smell of mint tea and relaxing infusions. Here are some places to write down and remember.
At first glace, what strikes your heart is the absolute beauty and harmony of this place. Besides trying the pools fed by springs at 50°, I’ve also had the wine treatment experience here, and I will get into the details in my next post (stay tuned!).
Another treat I’ve had the chance to try was the salt cave, with local thermal water and salts from the Dead Sea with a double healing effect, both for the skin and the respiratory tract.
Terme di Bagno Vignoni Hotel
Let me start by saying that I’ve had a great dinner here with delicious dishes and several types of wine, and everything was carefully introduced and explained in greater detail by the owners, a 100% local family. Another experience I’ve had and that I suggest you have alone or with a partner is the night bath experience. Hot water, beneficial waterfalls for the cervical pain as well as the beauty of the setting with candles and different scents ensure the right dose of benefits for the body and the soul.
3 – Beauty, relaxation and environmental sustainability
I have spent a night in Palazzo Bandino, a holiday farm with an elegant wellness centre. The whole company is 80% energetically autonomous thanks to a system that produces energy by burning the organic waste of agricultural processing.
4 – Night experiences
The experience of thermal baths at night has really hit my imagination: I suddenly realized there are places where in the evening, besides going to the cinema or to a pub, people are likely to go to the baths to watch the sun set and have a little chat immersed in hot and sulphurous water, before having dinner in their bathrobe.
The Bagno Vignoni and Montepulciano thermal baths, mentioned in entry 1 and 2, are clearly included.
San Giovanni Terme Rapolano
If you find yourself in the area of Rapolano Terme instead, go visit the San Giovanni spa and thermal baths where, besides full wellness and beauty treatments, you can also simply enjoy the sunset or the evening in a pool that looks like a typical country path of Tuscany, stretching towards the horizon.
Speaking of which, the sunset I watched in the panoramic thermal pool at Fonteverde spa, before having a drink and appetizers by the pool, is certainly to be included among the best in my life.
The philosophy of this centre is summed up by the work Equilibrium that aims to teach how to deal with stress through healthy eating, physical exercise, harmony and awareness. All this thanks to the benefits of sulphate-calcium-bicarbonate-fluoride waters.
I’ll be back soon to talk about these areas and locations, in the meantime leave a comment if you need more information!