Under the sea…
Autumn is officially here and I’m cold. If you are feeling the chill, I know the perfect place to warm yourselves up. Bad Wilsnack is an hour by train from Berlin, but still in Brandenburg State, so you can get a nice cheap ticket (€23) for yourself and four friends as long as you travel together. [A sneaky insiders tip: sit on the right side of the train and look out of the window just after you leave the main bit of Berlin and you can get a lucky glimpse into the naked world of men who like to wander around without clothing and sunbathe. I was a little shocked when I saw it for myself and, being an English lady, will now be sitting on the left side of the train – haha!]
Our lovely friend Jenny had told us about these salt baths that you can soak in for hours and it reminded me of Onsen (hot springs) in Japan, which Jason and I both absolutely love. There is literally nothing better in the winter than soaking in a huge public bath with your friends in natural water so hot it actually hurts your skin. This doesn’t exist in Germany, but we have found the next best thing! Salt baths!
Bad Wilsnack is a tiny town with a lot of visitors – it’s about five minutes walk to the resort and on the way you pass a graduation tower which releases salt into the area. The website and price list are here. Once you are inside, you can float in all kinds of salt water pools, from a little salty to so salty you cannot stand up straight and need to wear floats around your neck and shoulders so you don’t accidentally drink any. The whole space is around 600m² and you can easily get lost. Part of the place is inside in varying degrees of warm and hot water and then if you step outside you can bathe and relax in a huge salty jacuzzi. For such a so-called healthy and relaxing place, the food is typical meat and chips. We enjoyed our fatty food, even more so knowing that the spa is actually good for you! It has iron-rich mud and iodine brine and we felt so relaxed that we all fell asleep in the train on the way home and slept like babies that night.
I would recommend bringing a bathtowel to wander around in, not shaving any part of your body for at least a day or two and flipflops are a must! If you don’t mind getting naked, then get the extra entrance to the saunas, which all have different temperatures and aromas and even an ice-mist room. After my traumatic experience, we stayed in the clothed area, but I will say that some people left their bits to dangle and float about even here… Eeeep!
Here a little hint: You can not only float in the beneficial brine! The graduation tower (below photo) next to the thermal bath vapourizes the brine using a specially selected brushwood, so you can breathe the healthy salt air while hiking in the area. This salty air has proven positive effects of your general well-being and your respiratory system. So there!!