Home Uncategorized Ultimate Guide to the Széchenyi Baths in Budapest

Ultimate Guide to the Széchenyi Baths in Budapest

by Roberto
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Nothing says relaxation like a hot tub and a massage. When we found out that Budapest is known as the spa capitol of Europe, we obviously added it to our itinerary.

Budapest sits on a network of mineral hot springs which is where the spa water is sourced from. The mineral baths are recommended by locals and are considered to aid in recovery for ailments like joint pain, arthritis, and back pain.

There are SO MANY different bath houses around the city, so do your research on which might be best for you. Most of them used to only allow women on certain days. That’s right, many of these pools were mostly men only. Today, Rudas Baths is the only bath house left that’s still gender restrictive.

We decided to go to the largest and most famous, the Széchenyi Baths, so this post will be specifically around our experience and recommendations here, but I can’t wait to return and experience some of the others!

Do I need to get a ticket to Széchenyi Baths in advance?

I’d absolutely recommend being prepared with a ticket in advance. I’ve heard the lines can get very long, especially on weekends and during peak tourist season! There are so many websites where you can buy tickets and packages that include massages and other things. We booked a tour through Viator that included the entrance fee and an optional massage!*

Our tour included entrance to all of the pools (except the beer bath), a free mini bottle of shampoo, a personal changing room and locker for each of us, and a 20 min massage! It was a pretty sweet deal and was definitely our most relaxing day of our vacation.

Where is Széchenyi Baths?

This bath house was a bit outside of the Budapest city center, but was SUPER easy to get to. It’s right on the Budapest M1 Metro Line, so if you are staying anywhere near the main city center, just hop on and go to the Széchenyi fürdő stop.

Don’t forget to stamp your ticket at the validation machines!

When you get out of the metro station, you’ll easily see the LARGE yellow building. The entrance in the park is the cash only entrance, so if you bought tickets online beforehand, follow the building to the left to the main entrance.

What do I bring to Széchenyi Baths?

  • TOWEL – Hopefully this was an obvious one. We just brought a couple from our hotel. If you have room, bring an extra one too, ours was soaked by the end of the day and it would have been nice to have a clean/dry one after our final shower.
  • WATER SHOES – Bring shoes you can get wet, like watershoes or flip flops. You don’t need them in the pools, but you will walk from pool to pool and use them in the showers.
  • SWIMSUIT – This might also seem like an obvious one, but many of the bath houses (if gender separated), used to be “Swimsuit Optional”. Don’t worry, Széchenyi is a swimsuit required venue. ?
  • FOOD – This bath house allows you to bring your own food in. They do have a snack bar, but there aren’t many choices. We didn’t bring food and really regretted it. So, bring snacks!
  • WATERPROOF PHONE/PHONE CASE – This one isn’t required, but if you want your pictures “for the ‘gram” you’ll need to have a waterproof phone or some where try to keep your non-waterproof one. I ended up keeping mine in my locker most of the day.
  • SWIM CAP – While the lap pool is included in your entrance fee, they require a swim cap to get in. If you plan to get your exercise on, bring one.

What to expect when you get to Széchenyi Baths?

Once you get in, someone will escort you to your cabin (if you bought one). They will also give you a bracelet that will function as your cabin key. You’ll place the bracelet on a screen at the end of each cabin aisle and it will tell you your cabin number. You can do this any time during your visit if you forget your cabin number. The cabins have enough space for you to change and leave your things.

Once you get changed and drop off your things, head off to the pools! Each pool has a posted temperature in Celsius, so you can move from pool to pool depending on the heat you are looking for. BEWARE of the plunge pool! There is one pool that is meant to be used as a plunge pool, and it is COLD! Although, if you are one of those people who enjoy self torture, then have fun!

Indoor pool at Szechenyi Baths

What extras are available at Széchenyi Baths?

Thermal Beer Spa

A really unique concept at Széchenyi is their Thermal Beer Spa! I know what you’re thinking and no, it’s not a bath tub of beer. They use the thermal water and mix in hops, yeast, and malt. This mixture helps reduce acne and cellulite, relieves muscle tension, and improves blood circulation.

You can purchase a ticket for €30 (or €50 for two to share a tub). This will get you an hour of relaxation, but ALSO unlimited beer from your own tap! WHAT!?

Beer Spa at Szechenyi Baths

Aqua Fitness Classes

From 8am to 5pm every day, one of the indoor pools offers Aqua Fitness classes ever 30 minutes! There is also a fitness center onsite if you prefer your workouts out of the water.

Massages

Many relaxing massages are also available. Our Viator ticket* came with a 20 minute aromatherapy massage, but there are other massage options available as well.

Bath Parties

If you are one who is much more young at heart (and doesn’t go to bed at 10pm like me), then you might be interested in the evening Bath Parties. They are held every Saturday from February to December, but are very popular, so buy your tickets in advance.

After a long day at the baths, head back to town and find some nice warm, hearty goulash or langos.

*I do get a small commission for bookings through Viator, but the experience and price is no different for you! Also, I wouldn’t recommend anything to you that I wouldn’t recommend to my BFF.

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