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Booking.com Shares Seven Serene Spa Destinations for Tranquility this World Spa Day

This year, World Spa Day is celebrated globally on February 27 – a day that is truly about wellness, a chance to relax and unwind. Whether indulging in nourishing mud baths, soothing massages, or a dip in hot mineral springs, there’s a range of treatments for everyone. With three-quarters (75%)* of travelers agreeing that being close to water instantly makes them feel more relaxed, a warming plunge pool is the perfect antidote to refresh the soul. With that in mind, Booking.com, global leader in connecting travelers with the widest choice of incredible places to stay, is sharing seven serene spa destinations and stays around the world that will give a sense of tranquility this World Spa Day. 

Bangkok, Thailand 


This southeast Asian metropolis has long been synonymous with a wild nightlife scene, Michelin-starred street food and ancient temples. But Bangkok is also famed for its focus on wellness and all-pampering spas that entice travelers from around the world. This capital city has a serene soul at heart, and offers many tranquil spaces for visitors to let go of stress and rejuvenate the mind and body. From traditional treatments such as Thai massage and Tok Sen massage (an ancient technique that uses a special wooden hammer to tap along the body’s energy line), to Turkish hammam and Japanese onsen-style spas, there’s a whole host of experiences to be had. Travelers who travel in via plane can get into the spirit of the vacation from the getgo with a Post-Flight Bangkok Massage to wave goodbye to jet lag, or a Couples Massage and Rooftop Dinner in the Nonthaburi neighborhood will provide the opportunity to unwind in a beautiful setting with a loved one. 

Where to stay: Located right in the heart of downtown Bangkok, the high-rise Grande Centre Point Hotel Ratchadamri Bangkok offers a calm oasis in a prime spot above the pulsating Thai capital. This five-star hotel has everything guests could want for a tranquil vacation including a beautiful outdoor pool, an indulgent spa with holistic treatments and a leafy garden to relax in the tropical heat. Luxurious rooms and suites feature modern décor and guests can enjoy nourishing Thai cuisine in the onsite restaurant which dishes up locally sourced, organic food and offers vegan and vegetarian options. 

Tulum, Mexico


Located on the eastern side of the Yucatan Peninsula on Mexico’s Riviera Maya, Tulum has a boho-chic feel with its fusion of beautiful beaches, ancient seaside ruins and candle-lit bars in the jungle. The many spas and healing sanctuaries there will take visitors on a mystical well-being journey complete with clay baths, holistic treatments and hydrotherapy pools. Travelers can take part in a traditional Mayan ‘temazcal’ steam-bath ceremony that aims to cleanse and renew both the mind and body, or soak in restorative mud at Laguna Kaan Luum, a lagoon with waters that alternate between blue and green. On the white sandy shores, there’s daily sunrise yoga and peaceful meditation classes available and a beachside massage is never far away. Learn more about the Riviera Maya on a Tulum Ruins, Turtles and Cenote Tour to discover Mayan ruins set against the backdrop of the Caribbean Sea, snorkel with turtles and take a drip in a water-filled sinkhole in the rainforest. 

Where to stay: Positioned on a private beach with postcard-worthy views of the Caribbean Sea, Cabanas Tulum - Beach Hotel & Spa is just a short drive away from the center of Tulum. Laidback beach chic is the vibe and each room comes with either a private plunge pool or an open air hot tub as well as a hammock. Its luxury spa, exclusively for the use of hotel guests, offers a wide range of massages, detox treatments and Mayan therapies including energy healing sessions, and houses a Turkish bath and hot and cold pools. For those seeking to completely switch off, the hotel is screen free and offers daily yoga classes. 

Aix-les-Bains, France


This picturesque thermal spa town in the Haute Savoie area of the Rhône-Alpes region is situated on the shores of Lake Bourget, the largest and deepest natural lake in France. The town’s story began with the Romans, when they discovered a series of thermal springs gushing from the foothills in the area, which have since attracted visitors for the past 2,000 years. Today, Aix-les-Bains is renowned around the world for the quality of its thermal waters, and home to many health clubs and resorts dedicated to well-being. Lake Bourget is fringed with sandy beaches, so visitors can kick back lakeside after experiencing one of many thermal baths which offer hot thermal pools, saunas, steam rooms and treatments such as hydrotherapy with proven benefits to support muscle relaxation. To explore more of the scenic surrounding area, discover vineyards and meet winemakers along the leafy Combe de Savoie valley on a Savoyard Vineyards Tour for a day trip with a private driver.

Where to stay: Les Suites du Lac is a serene guest house overlooking Bourget Lake and just a walk away from the center of Aix-les-Bains and its beautiful beaches. All the suites have a contemporary vibe and feature panoramic views of the tranquil lake and surrounding mountains. Amenities include a lake-view infinity pool, landscaped gardens and an indulgent spa where guests can enjoy a rejuvenating hammam and personalized massage. 

Hakone, Japan


Located in the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park, an hour’s drive from Tokyo, Hakone overlooks the majestic Lake Ashinoko and is popular with both international and Japanese travelers seeking calm in their lives. Offering serene onsens, traditional inns and spectacular scenery crowned by Mount Fuji, this town is one of Japan’s most famous and popular hot spring resorts. The many hot springs housed in bathhouses and inns are powered by more than a dozen spring-water sources, each with their own qualities and benefits from skin-smoothing sodium bicarbonate water to gentle, pure water said to relieve aching joints and muscles. Visitors can enjoy a good soak in open-air baths surrounded by forestland and mountains, and indoors enjoy a sauna, get a massage or slurp up noodles. To explore Lake Ashinoko, book a Hakone Sightseeing Cruise and set sail on a pirate ship for fabulous views of the surrounding scenery, including Mount Fuji reflected on the still waters. 

Where to stay: Surrounded by forest in the foothills of Mount Hakone, the Hakone Kowakien Mikawaya Ryokan is a traditional Japanese inn that offers luxurious rooms with a private hot-spring bath and spectacular landscape views. This tranquil sanctuary features minimalist, sleek Japanese interiors featuring bamboo design, and beautiful gardens with cherry blossoms in spring and maple leaves in autumn. Located in a geothermal area, there’s a number of hot springs nearby for guests to relax in, and the stay serves delicious traditional Japanese food, from sashimi to tempura, to refuel. 

Pré-Saint-Didier, Italy


Located in the heart of the Aosta Valley in north-western Italy, the town of Pré-Saint-Didier is renowned for its thermal waters, incredible landscapes and year-round outdoor activities. Home to baths that reach temperatures of up to 99°F (37°C) and are world-renowned for their relaxing, anti-rheumatic and restorative properties, it’s the perfect ingredient for a nourishing and revitalising break. Visitors can unwind in the outdoor pools and enjoy the purity of spring water from the Mont Blanc glaciers, along with breathtaking views of the highest mountain in the Alps. The area has plenty to offer in all seasons, from snow sports to hiking. Just a short drive away in Courmayeur, experience a unique ascent to Mont Blanc on a Monte Bianco Skyway Experience and soak up alpine scenery in a heated and rotating cable car to 11,500 feet (3,500m), stopping for lunch in the highest cafe in Italy. 

Where to stay: The alpine-style QC Termemontebianco is an upscale spa hotel set at the foot of Mont Blanc. Nearby the renowned ski resort of Courmayeur and just a short walk to the center of Pré-Saint-Didier, it’s an ideal stay for those wanting to spend moments of wellness close to nature. Guests can indulge in the invigorating waterfalls and thermal waters of the spa, book a tailor-made massage, or relax in the reading lounge after a day out skiing or hiking. Both healthy cuisine and mountain fare is available at the restaurant. 

Calistoga, United States


At the top of Napa Valley, Calistoga is a small city in California full of relaxing hot springs and mud baths (a local specialty is volcanic hot ash), which are known to have detoxing properties to rejuvenate skin. A must-see for visitors to the area is the ‘Old Faithful of California’ – a water geyser that erupts every 15 minutes to half an hour and lets off steam and water that can reach up to 60 feet high (18 meters). Visitors can enjoy the exciting natural sight and enjoy lunch on the picnic grounds while enjoying the peaceful scenery until the geyser erupts of course. Calistoga is also known for its world-class restaurants and of course, the exceptional Napa Valley wines. Travelers can enjoy a Napa Valley Wine Trolley Tour with Lunch, riding in a replica of an antique 1890s San Francisco cable car, travelling through wine country to visit several estates.

Where to stay: Golden Haven Hot Springs is located just a short drive away from both the Napa Valley Wine Train and the Old Faithful Geyser. The stay features rustic, simple interiors for a cozy stay, where guests can feel right at home. The resort features an incredible spa where guests can enjoy a dip in the indoor pool and hot tub or delve into the mud bath or enjoy a refreshing herbal facial. Travelers can feel truly pampered at this nourishing stay and leave with muscles relaxed and their skin glowing. 

Budapest, Hungary 


Travelers can discover the historic beauty of Budapest and indulge their minds, bodies and souls in the mineral goodness bubbling up from the city’s 118 springs. Whether admiring the decorative art nouveau surroundings of Gellért at the Turkish baths, or taking a dip on a Private Tour of Budapest with a Guided Szechenyi Bath Experience in one of the Széchenyi thermal bath’s 18 pools, there are many differents spas for travelers to experience in Budapest. Travelers can find comfort in hydratherapy from the deep underground springs that offer refreshing mineral-rich waters that feature restorative powers utilised over centuries. After a calming spa day, have a drink in one of the city’s quirky ruin bars and then tuck into a delicious dinner to try some Hungarian cuisine. 

Where to stay: Travelers can discover the five-star Corinthia Hotel Budapest on the Grand Boulevard in the city center and pamper themselves with free access to its indulgent Royal Spa, ideal for the 36%* who are interested in water-centric travel in 2024. Guests can de-stress in steam baths and hot tubs, chill in the decadent pool, or relax in a mud or seaweed bath. To round off the stay, guests can enjoy a delicious meal at the onsite  restaurant, that mainly serves organic and locally sourced food, with a selection of gourmet cuisines from Hungarian and Asian to International. 

*Travel Predictions 2024 research commissioned by Booking.com and conducted among a sample of adults who plan to travel for business or leisure in the next 12-24 months. In total, 27,730 respondents across 33 countries and territories were polled (including 1008 from Argentina, 1012 from Australia, 505 from Austria, 1001 from Belgium, 1002 from Brazil, 1009 from Canada, 1009 from China, 1002 from Colombia, 508 from Croatia, 504 from Denmark, 1011 from France, 1011 from Germany, 1016 from Hong Kong, 1004 from India, 510 from Ireland, 504 from Israel, 1014 from Italy, 1004 from Japan, 1009 from Mexico, 1014 from The Netherlands, 1015 from New Zealand, 500 from Portugal, 502 from Singapore, 1010 from South Korea, 1009 from Spain, 502 from Sweden, 507 from Switzerland, 504 from Taiwan, 1003 from Thailand, 502 from the UAE, 1007 from the UK, 1005 from the US and 1007 from Vietnam). Respondents completed an online survey in July 2023.