Which is the Best Thermal Bath in Budapest?

Thermal Baths

You HAVE to visit one (or more) of the Thermal Baths when you come to Budapest: Hungary is the third most thermal country in the world (after Iceland and New Zealand) and Budapest is the only city in the world with healing thermal baths!! You have to visit! 

What they all have in common: 
In all of them, the layout is kind of similar (an outside pool or two, lots of inside pools of different temperatures and lots of saunas and steam rooms). 

Also in all of them, the layout is super confusing and you could easily miss an awesome room or two. Try and get your hand on a map, and don't be surprised if you walk towards something, to find you can't go in that way and you have to turn around and go another way. 

In all of them you must wear a swimming hat in the swimming pool. You can bring one with you or buy one there. We just didn't bother going in the swimming pools, there are enough other pools, baths and saunas to keep you occupied, and frankly after an hour or two in those relaxing pools, you're not going to want to go swimming.  Saying that though, I was super jealous of a few ladies who had the most beautiful flowery swimming hats. 

Essentially no mater which bath you go to, you're going to get to try out some awesome baths and saunas, and you're going to go back to your hotel feeling as soft as a baby's bottom, but, despite their similarities, each bath still had something unique:


Szechenyi bath is probably the most famous bath in Budapest, with its iconic outdoor pools. These are pretty big and very warm, which was disappointing as we went on a hot day, and felt like lobsters. We're told it's magical in the winter!!

We enjoyed the inside a lot more, where there are lots of baths of all different shapes and temperatures. 

Out of the three we went to, we found Szechenyi to be a bit 'lads on tour' like. There were lots of 'lads' there buying beer at 11am and vegging out. Perfect if you're a lad on tour, but if you're a young couple, with a prudish old-fashioned attitude (like us) it probably won't be your favourite pool.  We still recommend going though as it's still a beautiful place.

But if you only have time/money for one pool we'd definitely say go to:

Gellert was the second bath we went to and our favourite one over-all. Their outside pool has a wave machine (which Germans like Tanbay love) and it was a much more reasonable temperature for a hot summer's day (i.e. it was cold). 

We also loved the decor of Gellert - it was so pretty inside!! 

If (when) you come to Gellert make sure you go to the pools on both sides of the swimming pool, we nearly missed the pools on the rhs and they were the prettiest!

We really loved the saunas and steam rooms here too.


Rudas was the third and final pool we went to. We were a little disappointed with the size of their outside pool (it's tiny):

but the temperature was perfect for the summer (not too hot like Szechenyi and not bordering on too cold like Gellert). This outside pool got extra points because it was the only one with cool views of Budapest:

Rudas has one section of baths of different temperatures which is nice, but very modern and not that aesthetically pleasing. No, what we loved about Rudas was the other section of baths which are super old and gorgeous!!! Make sure you don't miss the old section!

Our personal favourite: 
Personally, we loved Gellert the best, it's perfect for couples/singles/people who love pretty architecture. Rudas is perfect if you travelling just as girls/just as guys because they do guys only days (Mon, Wed, Thurs and Fri) and girls only days (Tues). Sat and Sun are for all. Szechenyi is perfect for families and large groups. 

Whichever pool(s) you visit you must be brave and do this: relax in the hottest pool you can find (usually around 40 degrees celsius) and then jump into the coldest one you can find (usually around 20 degrees). You won't want to, but submerge yourself in that cold one and I promise when you get out (which will probably be immediately whilst saying a couple of swear words), you will feel like you SPARKLE!!  

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Travelling through the kyriarchy and weaselling our way out of the rat race - a female travel blogger writing about socially and politically conscious travelling.


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