Hot springs are produced when geo-thermally heated groundwater reaches the earth’s surface. People often think of hot springs as a source of relaxation. But along with soothing your body, hot springs offer several health benefits. The silica and sulfur-rich water can have a healing effect on your skin, and the maintained temperature of 38-degree celsius relaxes your muscles and improves your circulation.
The best part is that you don’t have to fly to Iceland or Japan to dip in the warm waters. Several hot springs in India still haven’t lost their pristine value. We have compiled a list of seven such hot springs that will give your body a much-deserved dose of relaxation and wellness.
The well-curated hot springs in Panamik give you yet another reason to go to the much loved Ladakh. Panamik is situated close to the picturesque Nubra valley and is about 150 kms away from Leh. The hot water spring here is located at an elevation of 10,442 ft above sea level. Along with offering all the virtues of a typical hot spring, Panamik goes a step beyond and offers you scenic Himalayan views while you get comfortable in the warm pools.
Manikaran, Himachal Pradesh
Located in the stunning Parvati valley of Kullu district, Manikaran is famous as a pilgrimage centre for both Hindus and Sikhs. In addition to various religious sites, Manikaran is also popular for its collection of hot springs. The hot water is extensively used for cooking meals in the temples and gurudwaras, and of course, you can dip yourself in for a holy bath. Because of its popularity, the small village is dotted with various affordable stay options.
Kheerganga, Himachal Pradesh
Want to experience hot springs minus the crowds at religious sites? Driving 22 kms from Manikaran reveals another splendid hot spring in Himachal Pradesh. The name Kheerganga is derived from how the the river Ganges looks in that part of the region. It looks white like ‘kheer’ or the Indian porridge. To travel here, one has to go to Barshaini and trek to Kheerganga. The trek might be tiring but offers gorgeous views of the mountains in all their glory. Once up, you can give your muscles a spa-like treatment by dipping into the hot waters.
Yumnthang Valley in Sikkim is popularly knows as the Valley of Flowers. The abundant natural beauty only makes the visit to the hot spring here more worthwhile. This hot spring is located only a short distance away from the Yumthang village. There are two huts with two pools that are set up for the convenience of the visitors. The hot water here is said to be rich in sulphurated hydrogen.
Barkeshwar, West Bengal
Barkeshwar is a sacred sight, an approximately six hour drive from Kolkata. Famous for its Shakti temple, this town, located on the banks of the Barkeshwar river, is thronged by many pilgrims every years. The spring water is located close to the temple and devotees of the temple believe that it has divine powers. The temple itself is beautiful and there are other shrines to explore around.
Tapovan is located only 14 kms from the sacred city of Joshimath. In addition to the hot springs, Tapovan gives you the chance to closely view high peaks like Nanda Devi. The hot spring isn’t large but you can collect the ‘multani’ soil around the springs as it is said to have many medicinal qualities for your skin. The road leading up to Tapovan is incredibly beautiful, too.
Dhuni Pani, Madhya Pradesh
Hot springs in mountains is not an uncommon phenomenon but in a forest? This little-known natural jewel is hidden in the dense forests of Amarkantak in Madhya Pradesh. However, like most other hot springs, this is located alongside an old temple. Dhuni Pani has a great spiritual significance. In the earlier times, people here used to believe that taking a dip in the warm waters would cure one of fatal diseases. It must be noted that Dhuni Pani is not easily accessible and one has to undertake an arduous trek into the forest. But there is nothing better than having a pool of hot water after a long trek, is there?
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