Chile is a tricontinental country, that is to say, it is composed of three geographical zones: continental, insular and Chilean Antarctic. Both, the Andes mountain range, covering approximately 2,500 miles (4,000 km), and the 90 potentially active volcanoes within the ‘Pacific ring of fire’ are highlights of this region. From the volcanoes, over 275 hot springs are born with healing properties and are rich in minerals, from the arid Atacama Desert in the north, to the abundant vegetation of the south.
Quinamavida and Panimavida are located in the south of Maule, their hotels are known for their history and colonial architecture, typical of the region, offering thermal spas, treatments with mud and volcanic stones, geothermal baths with herbs/salts, steam baths and clay treatments.
Meanwhile, the largest hot springs concentration in South America is located in La Araucanía, Los Ríos and Los Lagos. This region has a prominent tourism industry, featuring internationally recognized lodges with distinctive architecture allowing for connection with nature and offering thermal wellness programs.
Pucon, in Araucania, is recognized for being the ‘capital of adventure tourism’ with ski centers, rafting, trekking, national parks and a vast array of thermal waters, including diverse thermal pools, annual memberships and spa services.
Approximately 90 minutes away, in Los Rios, sit the geometric hot springs of Coñaripe, distinguished by its creative and innovative design: a large wooden footbridge, approximately 1,659 feet (500 meters) long, that runs along 20 pools around the southern jungle of the Villarrica National Park.
The Huilo-Huilo Biological Reserve is an excellent thermal choice with a variety of pools, thermal baths made of volcanic stone or native wood, saunas and mineral mud pools, ideal for experiencing relaxation and tranquility, enjoying the beauty of the rainforest and native fauna. Activities such as hiking to the volcano, zip-lining and horseback riding. Stay in cabins, lodges or hotels designed with the concept of ‘magical forests’ inviting guests to appreciate the natural environment.
Chilean Patagonia has about 70 hot springs, however Puyuhuapi stands out for its remote location with lodges, hostels and cabins with typical and gourmet local cuisine. Find indoor and outdoor thermal pools, and a spa offering treatments such as thermal hydromassage with aromatherapy, thalassotherapy, milk baths and wine therapy. There are also fitness facilities and activities such as hiking and kayaking.
This itinerary is recommended for those who want to resonate with volcanic energy, alongside ancient forests, rivers, lakes, routes and exotic trails in Chile, to live a transformative thermal tourism experience.
By Jessica Heredia
Co-founder, Consciencia Wellness
Cocalmayo Thermal Waters
Santa Teresa, Peru
Located approximately 12 miles from Machu Picchu, the thermal waters of Cocalmayo are ideal for relaxing after visiting the Inca city. Its facilities include three pools with crystal clear waters from a natural hot spring originating in the Uripata lagoon, with temperatures of 100° -113°F (38°-45°C), rich in magnesium, calcium, sulfate and bicarbonate.
These waters are attributed with healing properties for skin conditions, rheumatism and joint pain, and also considered a natural source of hydrotherapy and relaxation. Nearby, there are icy cold waterfalls, ideal for cooling off.
The Mayan Baths
San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
On a hilltop outside San Miguel de Allende sits an exclusive sanctuary with hot springs and tunnels lined with stone, quartz and crystal, adorned with Mayan symbols and lit by candlelight.
With temperatures of up to 40°C (104°F), and views of the La Laja Valley, The Mayan Baths were designed for guests to enjoy the sunset from its central tunnel.