Are you feeling overwhelmed by the holidays? Soak away those winter blues with a hot spring. Though many are concentrated in Daxing and Changping, there are also a few within the city if you can’t take off for an entire weekend. Though none of them list a minimum age requirement, high temperatures and a lack of activities for younger children make hot springs better suited for ages 5 and up.
Hot springs are known to promote blood circulation, relieve swelling and pain, and alleviate stress, but bathers should also take precautions to avoid injury or disease. Most commercial hot springs in China will provide towels, robes, and slippers; some will even supply sterilized bathing suits. It’s usually a good idea to shower before and after soaking.
In general, bathers should avoid soaking too frequently, too long, or at too high a temperature. Though every person is different, start with short sessions of 15-20 minutes. Don’t bathe on an empty stomach, and stop immediately if you start to feel tired or dizzy. Pregnant women should avoid hot springs and those with health problems are urged to consult a doctor before bathing.
Huaqing Hot Springs Hotel
Huaqing Hot Springs Hotel is located in the northeastern part of Chaoyang District. It features a natural hot spring with water welling up from 2,700 meters underground. The centerpiece of the resort is a large, open-air pool surrounded by greenery. The facilities are relatively simple, with 12 types of indoor and outdoor pools, nine private spa rooms in Thai and Japanese style, a sauna, hot stone kangs, and TCM massages. There are also guest rooms, restaurants, meeting rooms, and a fitness center.
Admission to the hot springs costs RMB 118 for adults and is free for kids under 1.2 meters. The hotel’s website is entirely in Chinese.
2 Lishui Qiao, Chaoyang District (8482 6665) www.hqwqbg.cn
Spaview Hot Spring World (Shunjing Spa Hotel)
Spaview Hot Spring World is located diagonally across from the Ikea store in Lido. The spa bills itself as “the world’s largest indoor hot spring” and claims a floor space of 130,000 square meters. The natural hot spring water is drawn from a depth of 2,600-3,075 meters. Facilities include both indoor and outdoor pools, Asian and Western dining, guest rooms, and conference rooms.
Admission to the hot springs costs RMB 198 for adults and RMB 99 for kids under 1.4 meters. Kids under 1.1 meters get in for free. The all-you-can eat buffet costs an additional RMB 80 per person. The staff speaks limited English and the website is completely in Chinese.
3 Beisihuan Donglu, Chaoyang District (5827 1888, 5865 3888) www.shunjingwenquan.com
Longxi Hotspring Resort
Located in Daxing District, Longxi is the ultimate five star experience. The resort includes a hotel, golf course, and fitness and recreation center. Be prepared to shell out the big bucks if you’re staying overnight; rooms with a view of the Longxi’s “Hot Spring World” start at RMB 1,500 a night. Luckily, visitors don’t have to stay at Longxi to access the hot spring facilities.
The Hot Spring World includes a huge indoor swimming pool, food gallery, spa, saunas, heated beds with onsite TCM consultation, and a variety of therapeutic and beautifying pools. These are divided into several “areas” with names like the Skin Whitening and Skin Care Area, Health Care Area, Tea Therapy Area, and Wine Culture Area.
Admission to Longxi’s hot spring facilities costs RMB 369 for adults and RMB 150 for kids under 1.2 meters. The pools range from 25-50 degrees Celsius. Hotel staff speak limited English, but Longxi has an English website.
8 Shunjing Lu, Panggezhuang, Daxing District (8928 2222, firstname.lastname@example.org) http://longxiresort.com/en
Chun Hui Yuan Resort
Chun Hui Yuan Resort in Shunyi includes hotel accommodations, meeting rooms, shopping, dining, and a hot spring club. The hot springs cover 13,000 square meters, and include both indoor and outdoor pools with remedies like rose, milk, and red wine. Chun Hui Yuan is best for a quiet weekend getaway. Room amenities include free Wi-Fi, breakfast, a walk-in shower, and an in-room hot tub. The hotel features beautiful garden surroundings, but there isn’t much to do in the neighboring areas.
Admission to the hot springs costs RMB 268 on weekends and RMB 168 on weekdays. Kids under 1.4 meters get in for RMB 138 on weekends and RMB on weekdays. Discounts are available for large groups.
Yuzhuang Village, Gaoliying, Shunyi District (6945 4433) www.chunhuiyuan.cn
Jiuhua Resort and Convention Center
Located in Changping District, Jiuhua has over 2,300 rooms and suites, 10 restaurants, a convention center, meeting rooms, sports facilities, a shopping center, and a medical center. Standard rooms start at RMB 620 per night.
Jiuhua is one of the only natural hot springs on this list. The mineral-rich water wells up from 1,230 meters underground and stays around 40 degrees Celsius. The outdoor hot spring is surrounded by traditional architecture and courtyards. Other facilities include saunas, massages, TCM consultation, a hydrotherapy center, mud baths, and a Thai spa.
Admission costs RMB 188+ for adults and RMB 150 for kids under 1.2 meters. The resort has an English website, but the online reservation form is only available in Chinese.
Xiaotang Shan, Changping District (6178 2288 ext 6666) www.jiuhua.com.cn/enindex.as