Looking for a thermal bath away from the noise of downtown Budapest? Dive into the iodine-salt waters of the recently reopened Pesterzsébet Bath.
Do you think you’ve seen it all in the Budapest thermal bath scenery? If you can recite all the big names, like Széchenyi Baths, Rudas Baths, and Gellért Baths by heart, and even had a few sweet dives at the tiny Veli Bej, it’s time you venture deeper and discover some lesser known spas of the city. Further from the main tourist spots and the buzzing downtown of Budapest, there are some hidden gems that are worth the ride. One of these is Pesterzsébet Iodine-Salt Thermal and Open-Air Bath, or in short, Pesterzsébet Bath. As the name suggests, this venue offers a very unique water composition, the only one in Budapest, which alone makes it a must. Besides, it reopened its upgraded doors in, so it’s still quite untouched by the crowds of tourists. Sounds good? Take the road less traveled with us and enjoy a spa day at the Southern corner of the Hungarian capital.
Hungary is famous for the many mineral springs that run through the country. Budapest alone has half a dozen thermal baths well-known for their healing waters. But while Széchenyi Baths, Rudas Baths, Gellért Baths and the other popular ones in the city center have the same water composition with health benefits mostly to arthritis and musculoskeletal problems, the waters of Pesterzsébet Bath are truly unique.
Rich in iodine, bromide, and salt, its geothermal waters have stress-relieving and calming powers, as well as antiseptic and anti-inflammatory effects great for a number of health problems ranging from degenerative illnesses of the joints, chronic and semi-acute arthritis, dislocation of the intervertebral discs, neuralgia, and chronic gynecological issues. It is the only iodine-salt thermal bath in Budapest, and with just a handful of similar healing waters in the countryside (Cserkeszőlő, Hajdúszoboszló, Igal, Debrecen), Pesterzsébet Bath offers a spa experience like no other in the capital city.
Contrary to most thermal baths in Budapest, Pesterzsébet Bath does not date back to the Ottoman times. Its story started in the early 1900s when the Danube at Budapest was still suitable for swimming. All it took was a pier stretching into the river and some wooden structures for the area to quickly become a popular swimming and sunbathing spot for the workers of the nearby factories.
Shortly after, the first pools got built, including the leisure pool with a then-revolutionary wave generator – which, according to some, was the first of its kind in Europe. Oddly enough, as it was before the discovery of the iodine-salt waters, the first pools got filled with water from the Danube. As the decades went by and the water of the Danube got less and less suitable for bathing, the owners of the bath started to drill wells and accidentally found thermal water. During the 1950s, they even built a domed bathhouse, mimicking the Turkish bath traditions. However, even the exceptional thermal water couldn’t save the bath from financial problems, which resulted in closing the open-air pools in 2001, and the spa in 2005. As the main gate got locked, Pesterzsébet Iodine-Salt Thermal and Open-Air Bath ceased to exist for the next decade or so.
Fast forward 14 years, Pesterzsébet Bath got its well-deserved renovation. The expanded and modernized indoor thermal bath reopened in December 2018, while the revamped open-air area welcomed its first guests in July 2019. Now the spa complex is ready to operate all seasons. Building on the old faux-Turkish dome, the indoor area now stretches to a 4,300 square-meter with 10 pools, one of which leads to the outdoors through an in-water exit, and an extensive sauna world. The outdoor facilities include the iconic wave pool, a swimming pool, and a children’s pool.
- Medicinal and thermal pools: a salt-iodine therapeutic pool with water temperature: 36-38 °C and another thermal pool with water temperature: 38-40 °C
- Leisure pool with in-pool access to the open-air bath area with water temperature: 34-36 °C
- Wave pool with water temperature: 26-28 °C
- Outdoor sitting pool and sun terrace with water temperature: 36-38 °C
- 25-meter outdoor swimming pool open all-season with water temperature: 26-28 °C
- Children’s pool with water temperature: 30-32 °C
- Indoor Finnish sauna (up to 20 people) – 80-90°C
- Indoor steam room (up to 8 people) – 45-50°C
- Indoor infrared-salt cabin (up to 6 people) – 45-50°C
- Outdoor Finnish sauna (up to 20 people) – 80-90°C
- Cold water immersion pool with water temperature: 10-14°C
- Hot water immersion pool with water temperature: 40-42°C
- Medical, aroma, and refreshing massages
- Medical and spa pedicure
- Bathing in carbonated water
- Underwater jet massage
- Underwater traction
- Mud treatment
- Medical pool bath
- Medical tub bath
The all-inclusive adult tickets on weekdays are 3,600 HUF and on weekend 3,800 HUF, which is approx. 10-11 euros. Due to its recent reopening and relative distance from downtown Budapest, entrance tickets less than that of the most famous thermal spas of the city. If we add this to the fact that it’s still quite unknown to tourists yet offers something exceptional, the iodine-salt thermal waters, it’s quite a good deal.
Located at the south Pest banks of the Danube in the 20th district of Budapest, Pesterzsébet Bath is relatively far from the inner city. But don’t get discouraged, the newly reopened thermal spa is definitely worth the ride.
If you use public transport, you can get there by suburban train H6 from Közvágóhíd (you may be familiar with the area because of Budapest Park, the biggest open-air concert venue in Budapest) or by bus nr. 23 from Boráros tér.
If you’re coming by car, there is a free parking lot for bath visitors.
If you’re planning to visit the bath multiple times or take sightseeing trips to the nearby towns while in Hungary, you should probably rent a car for your stay.
Are you done with thermal water and all you need is a good swimming pool? Check out the top pools in Budapest. And if you’re into a more adventurous spa experience, Budapest also has spa parties and a top notch waterpark at hand. Make a splash!
- What is Pesterzsébet Bath famous for?
- As its name suggests, Pesterzsébet Iodine-Salt Thermal and Open-Air Bath is famous for its unique waters rich in iodine, bromide, salt, and other minerals. Thermal water with this composition is only available in a few places in Hungary, and Pesterzsébet Bath is the only one boasting with it in Budapest.
- What are the main facilities of Pesterzsébet Bath?
- Pesterzsébet Bath includes a total of 10 pools, including indoor medicinal and thermal pools, a leisure pool connected to the outdoor sitting pool, as well as an outdoor wave pool, a swimming pool, and a children’s pool. The hot spring water is rich in iodine, bromide, salt, and other minerals with various health benefits. Besides the pools, Pesterzsébet Bath has an extensive sauna world with spacious Finnish saunas and steam rooms.
- Where is Pesterzsébet Bath located in Budapest?
- Pesterzsébet Bath is located in the 20th district of Budapest, at the south Pest banks of the Danube. Being further from the city center, this area is lesser known among tourists, but the newly opened Pesterzsébet Bath with its unique iodine-salt waters is definitely worth the ride. You can get there by suburban train H6 from Közvágóhíd or bus nr. 23 from Boráros tér.
- What are the entrance fees of the Pesterzsébet Bath?
- On weekdays the all-inclusive adult ticket is 3,600 HUF, while on weekends it’s 3,800 HUF, which is approx. 10-11 euros. Compared to other Budapest baths, these are cheaper prices given the fact that this bath is located further from the city center. Yet, its unique iodine-salt waters make it worth venturing a bit further into the outskirts of Budapest.
08:00:00 – 20:00:00