Hot Spring Resorts 2015-04-24

Hot springs are geothermal spring waters that gush from the ground. As the water contains many different minerals, it has been considered a natural resource with healing properties ever since ancient times.
Taiwan is located at the border of two giant tectonic plates. As a result, geological activity is quite prevalent, with geothermal sources all throughout the island. Taiwan is therefore fortunate enough to be able to enjoy an abundance of hot springs.
The most famous hot spring areas:
  • Area with the oldest history of hot springs, Beitou Hot Springs Area in Taipei
  • New Taipei City, Wulai Hot Springs Area
  • Yilan, Jiaoxi Hot Springs Area
  • Miaoli, Taian Hot Springs Area
  • Taichung, Guguan Hot Springs
  • Tainan, Guanziling Hot Springs
  • Pingtung, Sichongxi Hot Springs
  • Hualian, Ruisui Hot Springs
  • Rare underwater hot springs- Ludao Zhaori Hot Springs
If you have not yet soaked in a hot spring in Taiwan, then you may have not heard of the “Hot Spring Resort” type of hotel before. Hot spring resorts are places of accommodation that provide hot spring water; rooms are equipped with private baths, and you can relax and soak without having to expose yourself in front of strangers. If the private bath is too small for you, part of the resort will also have a public bath, foot bath, or separate male and female baths. The Taiwanese tend to be a bit more shy, so if the resort designates that swimsuits cannot be worn into the bath, typically the amount of people will lessen. If you’re lucky enough, you may even be able to enjoy a large private bath.
If your journey is running on a tight schedule and you cannot afford to stay a night, you may also select “bath house” as an option, and relax. A “bath house” is a bathroom-like room, and can be occupied for around 1 to 3 hours. Typically, there is also a private bath in the room, but aside from this there are only simple furnishings. If you have a limited budget, the public bath of a hot spring resort will also normally provide public soaks, and the price will be cheaper than that of a bath house. This type of hotel is very popular amongst the Taiwanese, as hot spring soaks are not based off of seasonal availability. Despite Taiwanese summers being moist and hot, many people and their families or lovers still come to hot spring resorts to soak in the hot springs.

But how to find the most suitable hot spring resort for your needs?
First of all, the main purpose of hot spring resorts are the hot springs. The hot springs located all throughout Taiwan vary in quality and are not identical, so selecting the proper location is very important. For instance, those who do not like the smell of sulfur should avoid hot springs with sulfur (such as Beitou Hot Springs or Yangmingshan Hot Springs). When choosing a hot spring resort, the bathroom is the most important aspect. Whether it be the size or comfort of the bath, or even the decorations in the room: these are all important aspects to consider. If you prefer Japanese-style or look forward to Eastern culture, there are many hot spring resorts that feature baths with wooden floors. So when you soak in the water, you can also smell the natural aroma of the wood due to the heat. If you choose the bath house option, you will need to keep track of time. The usage time allotted by each hot spring resort for their bath house differs, some are as little as 1 hour while others allow up to 3 or 4 hours. In addition, some resorts will even provide snacks and refreshments for the guests to enjoy.
Notes for hot spring soaks:
You must familiarize yourself with some of the rules and regulations of hot spring resorts beforehand, such as there being at least two or more travelers checking in at once (this is done for the safety of guests). Or if the resort has a public bath, guests will be required to wear a swimsuit and swim cap before entering. Before going into a hot spring, guests should evaluate their own physical condition and health. If you have severe high blood pressure or heart disease, it is recommended that you ask a doctor before. It is also not advised to enter after you’ve drunk alcohol, eaten, or are tired, otherwise it may be easier for you to get dizzy.