Every Budapeset travel guide noted the Thermal Baths as a must see while in the city. So of course, I added the baths to my travel itinerary. It was a bit hard to convince Dylan to join me to the bath, but after a long day walking around the city, being a tourist, he agreed to join me. We went to the Király Thermal Bath, which is a unisex bath, and offers four baths of varying temperatures. It gets pretty steamy in the bath, so all of the pictures in this post are press photos!
Upon entering, you buy your tickets from reception. The receptionist spoke very little English, but was able to complete our transaction. The daily ticket to the bath with a cabin is 2600 Forints (approx $11.50 CAD), and the ticket for the bath with a locker is 2300 Forints (approx $10 CAD). You can also rent a towel and/or bathing suit for a small fee plus a deposit. You are given an electronic bracelet that you can tap to your locker to lock and unlock it.
There are 4 baths, all of which are varying temperature. The water is described as "Hot spring water with calcium, magnesium, hydrogen-carbonate and sulphate, also containing sodium and with a substantial content of fluoride ions." There is a slight sulphur scent to the water, but that's really only noticeable if you're sitting under the faucet (pictured above). When we went to Király it was fairly busy, but it wasn't crowded. Most people sit around the edge of the bath, but there were a few people that ventured into the center, floating around. There are other smaller pools, which are warmer or colder (26-40°C). There is also a steam room, which was a bit too intense for me, but Dylan enjoyed it. There are two other saunas, of varying temperatures.
We spent 2 hours at Király, and Dylan and I both left feeling incredibly relaxed and rejuvenated. The atmosphere at Király is relaxed, but people are still talking, so it can get a bit loud inside the bath area. There were many couples at the bath, but there were also many singles, groups of friends, etc. Király is on the Buda side, and it's very easy to get to by foot or by public transportation. The baths in Budapest have domed roofs (pictured below), which makes it easy to spot them throughout the city!
If you're planning a trip to Budapest, then I would highly recommend visiting one of the famous Thermal Baths! I loved my time at Király, and I think that anyone looking for an authentic bath experience would also be pleased. We don't have anything like this here in Canada, so it was a great way to immerse myself into Hungarian culture. I found that most people at Király were locals, with just a handful of tourists.
Have you visited a thermal bath before? Does this sound like something that you would be willing to try?