Thermal waters in Arnedillo

The Hot Springs route of La Rioja

La Rioja

A relaxing experience in a natural setting

The valleys of the rivers Cidacos and Alhama are a place for switching off and feeling better. All you need to do is sink into their thermal waters, lift your gaze to the mountains, and let yourself drift away. Whether winter or spring, it’s a pleasure you can enjoy any time.

The valleys of the rivers Cidacos and Alhama are south-east of La Rioja. This area is rich in hot springs and thermal waters, and is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. With three spas and several outdoor swimming pools within a 50 kilometre radius, we are in the “hot springs route of La Rioja”, a sensational natural well-being experience.

Arnedillo, home of hot springs

The trip begins in the village of Arnedillo, where the thermal waters have been known since Roman times. From the village there is a 600 metre walk along the bank of the river Cidacos to the hot springs, the spa and the public baths. These outdoor pools fed by the hot springs are free to use. The water temperature ranges from 38º to 48º C, getting gradually hotter as you move through the pools. Some people also bathe in the river for the relaxing and toning effects of the alternating hot and cold. It’s an amazing feeling to immerse yourself in the hot water in winter, with a beautiful mountain landscape in the background.

Sunset in Arnedillo

Opposite the municipal pools is the Arnedillo spa, which also has outdoor thermal pools. This centre has always been a pioneer in developing treatments and facilities which make the most of these extraordinary waters. Here there are many ways to relax: enjoying the hydrotherapy programmes, a spa mud treatment or a soak in the outdoor hot springs are a few options.

Hot spring triangle

The municipalities of Grávalos and Cervera del Río Alhama are home to the other two spas, forming with Arnedillo the spa triangle of La Rioja. The Grávalos spa, 33 kilometres from Arnedillo, was built in the 19th century in a natural setting of unusual beauty. After a careful remodelling project it reopened as a modern spa complex with next-generation facilities. It offers various health and well-being programmes, such as the Roman-Irish circuit where you can relax in the active pool while gazing out of the enormous windows at a beautiful landscape of vineyards and hundred-year-old olive trees.

Exterior views of the Arnedillo spa

17 kilometres from Grávalos, in Cervera del Río Alhama, La Albotea spa first opened in 1851 and was also recently restored. The result is a modern, functional centre which has kept the most characteristic elements of the older building and where services will soon be restored so we can enjoy its thermal waters. After the recently completed restoration, it still has no reopening date.

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