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The Winter Spa Getaway

Updated: Feb 28, 2023

by Lily C. Fen

Welcome to the Tatras mountains of Slovakia, where you hit the slopes by day and chill at the spa by night. The natural hot springs of Poprad, Slovakia have dunes of snow piled all around due to the subzero temperatures, and you get to submerge in the soothing warmth of a geothermal pool. Snowflakes whirl about, melting on your warm shoulders as the steam rises around you.

Soak into outdoor geothermal pools in the middle of winter. Poprad, Slovakia,

(Photo from

Aqua City taps into natural springs that reach up to 49 degrees Celsius, then regulated down to a range of 30-38 degrees for visitors. The outdoor thermal pools are accessible all year-round and were a perfect way to cap off my first adventure on a snowboard and soothe my aching muscles.

The town has its own airport, and the destination is a lovely stroll through its picturesque churches and historical quarters. Besides the Tatras, we invite you to continue on a spa tour of another Slavic destination—Czech Republic’s spa secrets.

Karlovy Vary
Just a two-hour drive away from Prague, Karlovy Vary will have you walking past lavish colonnades, straight from the golden age of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

Purchase a pretty spa drinking cup from the many stands that surround the mineral springs of the Czech Republic, where people go to rehabilitate from ailments that trouble the liver, heart, and other vital organs through its waters. Thirteen of the seventy- nine different fountains have become the destination for those seeking a natural cure for diseases like diabetes or ill digestion.

Karlovy Vary was founded by Czech King and Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV in 1350, where legend states that the Emperor discovered the hot springs while on a hunting trip with his dogs.

Keep an eye out for the Neo-Rennaisance grandeur of the Mill Colonnade, stretching up to 132 meters in length and towering over several of the town’s hot springs. Famous artists such as Beethoven, Mozart, Kafka, and Mucha have visited Karlovy Vary, while the 20th century has seen the rise of the world-class Karlovy Vary Film Festival, which takes place every July. You’ll see the likes of Dame Judi Dench strolling past then.

Have a cup of tea at the lavish Grand Hotel Pupp, which is the main setting for the Queen Latifah movie, Last Holiday. Finally, head up to the Diana Observation Tower, which will allow you fantastic views of Karlovy Vary.
Mariánské Lázně
Head out further west to Mariánské Lázně , a spa haven nominated for the UNESCO List of World Heritage Sites, otherwise known as Marienbad to its German visitors.
The architectural work of Maxim Gorkij, the Kolonáda, remains the unmistakable landmark of this serene sanctuary, characterized by its cast iron construction and wooden ceilings.

The classic beauty of the colonnade dating back to 1889 is

resplendent in the late afternoon sunlight, Mariánské Lázně.

The mountain forest known as Slavkovský les surrounds Mariánské Lázně, offering various paths for hiking during warmer months. With the last of the snow, the winter season will allow you some joyous cross-country or downhill skiing. The slopes of Skiareál Mariánky offer various difficulty levels for visitors.
Up to a hundred mineral springs can be found in Mariánské Lázně. Six of them are the public’s main sources of wellbeing, named Cross (Křížový), Rudolf, Karolina, Forest (Lesní), Ambrose and Ferdinand.
Stroll by the Singing Fountain, part of the spa Colonnade, and relish the radiance of the Old World by booking tickets to see the West Bohemia Symphony Orchestra.

The author lost in the white wonders of a silver winter in Mariánské Lázně, Czech Republic.

Besides its healing waters, both Karlovy Vary and Mariánské Lázně have also become destinations for a variety of spa treatments, bringing a full sense of health and happiness. Dip into a whirlpool, get a massage, or enjoy a steam bath while here.

Velence Lake in Hungary Finally, head to Velence Lake in Hungary, where Velence Hotel & Spa is located. The place is perfect during the chilly winter months, with sumptuous meals and various thermal baths to dip into. Indoor and outdoor pools ranged in temperature from 30-36 degrees Celsius, my favorites were the medicinal pools at 36 degrees Centigrade, which left me feeling fully restored, even in the dead of winter.

The saunas were likewise a delight. The Organic Sauna with Light Therapy was higher in humidity than the others, with eucalyptus-scented water that you could pour over the hot stones. The bright scent gave me a refreshed mind and body. Try out the Finnish sauna, steam bath, the milder temperatures of the infrared sauna or tepidarium, the salt chamber, or take a cold dip into the Kneipp bath.

While in Hungary, make a side trip to Budapest (only 45 km away) for some sightseeing and have a bite of Hungarian goulash and sausage, “Gyulai” kolbász in Hungarian.

Try one of the more well-known public baths that Budapest is known for as well, such as the famous Széchenyi Spa, located at Pest, east of the Danube. If you want to get off the beaten tourist path, do as the nobles once did and indulge in the well-hidden secrets of Central Europe.
To visit these destinations in Europe, secure your Schengen Visa, with FAVE Visa Consultancy ready to share Visa tips for Filipinos.

This wonderful winter vacation is possible once you obtain a Schengen Visa. Contact us and Book your FREE consultation today.
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