As hot springs enthusiasts we were incredibly excited to visit Budapest, the City of Baths. After doing some research we chose to visit Rudas Baths due to its rich history. The amazing healing center has its roots dating back to the 13th century when the Ottoman Turkish armies overtook the Royal Palace of Hungry. During this time the Turkish people began to build their specialized healing bath centers along the Danube using the mineral rich hot spring water that sits deep below Budapest.
The current day baths were renovated in 2012, providing modern day amenities without losing any of the charm of this 500-year-old structure. The bathhouse offers a swimming pool (swimming cap required) several thermal baths, steam rooms, sauna, salt infusion room and spa services.
Here are the top 10 Reasons why Rudas Baths are the best hot springs in Budapest, and are not ranked in any specific order:
1. The day pass prices
Rudas, Baths is very reasonably priced and include the use of a locker. Please note that the famous steam bath (separate from the main areas) is only open until 20:00, or 8pm each day and there are specific days it is open to coeds, women only or men only. It is also one of the only bathhouses in town that is open late on Friday and Saturday nights 22:00-04:00 (10:00pn-4:00am). If you are a Budapest cardholder you will receive a 20% discount.
2. There are many spa services to choose from
The focus of this center is healing and relaxing the body as whole. For this reason you will not find spa service like facials, however there are a number of different types of massage to chose from, pedicures and even aroma therapy.
3. You don’t need to bring a towel
Rudas provides sheets for you to use to sit on in the sauna, salt room, or to wrap around yourself and use as a towel, at no extra cost.
4. The changing area has private stalls and easy to use lockers
The changing area is co-ed, however there are private stalls to comfortably change in and out of your suit. When you purchase your day pass you are provided with an electronic bracelet that allows you to sync with any open locker to safely store your belongings. You can wear your bracelet in all areas of the facility, and you return it upon exiting. The shower facilities and restrooms of course are separated by gender.
5. There is unlimited free mineral water to drink
To save a few HUF bring your own water bottle to refill or buy one at their café near the front desk when you enter the complex. There are cold flowing water fountains sprinkled around the facility where you can refill to your hearts desire. Make sure you stay hydrated!
6. There is a rooftop hot tub with an amazing view of the city
Not only can you relax outside in a gorgeous tub of natural hot spring water, you get to do so from the roof of the Rudas, Baths with a spectacular view of Budapest near the Erzsébet híd bridge on the Danube, River. There are also plenty of lounge chairs to relax on if you want to take some sun or need a nap.
7. You can eat at their restaurant in your bathing suit
On the second floor Rudas has a full bar and restaurant that you can visit in your swimsuit and/or while wrapped in your complimentary sheet. The food is worth a visit to Rudas alone. We can’t emphasize this enough, it was some of best Hungarian food we had in Budapest. We ordered the goat cottage cheese spread with fresh baked bread, goulash and the chicken paprika. The chicken paprika and the fresh bread (with the goat cheese) were the stars of the meal.
8. There is a full bar
We are not heavy drinkers by any means, and generally you should not mix alcohol with hot springs, saunas or steam rooms. That being said if you feel like grabbing a beer and relaxing in the salt infusion room, or grabbing a glass of wine to chill out on the roof with a gorgeous view of the city, you have that option. You are provided with plastic cups that can be taken anywhere within the facility to enjoy your beverage.
9. There is ice available in the sauna world area
Not only does Rudas provide free mineral water, there is also a large bin of ice where you can keep your water cool, or grab a handful before jumping back in a sauna or steam room.
10. Clean and well maintained
As previously mentioned Rudas Baths was renovated a few years back which helps provide a very pristine look, and the staff works hard to keep things clean and sanitary. Most areas have staff members who are constantly cleaning or monitoring the pools. You will find hangers and racks throughout the facility to hang your towel or sheet while enjoying one of the many facilities. They even have a special dryer for your wet bathing suit, and provide plastic bags for your damp belongings.