A “Therme” is a thermal bath, or thermal spring. In Austria, there are many Thermal bath complexes, called Thermen, which house mineral-infused pools, relaxation rooms, saunas, restaurants, fitness rooms, and spas (for massages and beauty treatments).
You can visit a Therme for a few hours, all day, or even overnight, as many Thermen have attached hotels. Ultimately, spending the night in a Therme is the most relaxing and memorable way to experience an Austrian Thermal Spa. We recommend the Aqua Dome Therme Hotel and the St. Martin’s Therme Hotel.
It’s important to think of a Therme as an upscale public bathhouse. While there are designated spaces for adults only, the main bathing complex is for everyone, including toddlers.
Contrary to a traditional spa in the States, a Therme isn’t centered around treatments. You go to a Therme primarily to bathe, to sweat (in a sauna), and to relax. You don’t need to schedule a treatment, or massage, to gain access to the thermal bath facilities.
Austrian Thermal Spas: How to Visit a Therme in Austria
- Pricing: A Therme day ticket costs around 33 – 42 EUR. The entrance to the sauna area usually costs an additional 13 – 15 EUR.
- Best Therme in Vienna: Therme Wien
- Best Therme Hotel in Burgenland: St. Martin’s Therme & Lodge
- Best Therme Hotel in Salzburg: Tauern Spa
- Best Therme Hotel in Tirol: Aqua Dome
- Best Therme Hotel in Upper Austria: Therme Geinberg
- Best Therme Hotel in Lower Austria: Linsberg Asia Hotel, Spa & Therme – Adults Only
- Best Therme Hotel in Styria: Hotel Rogner Bad Blumau
- What to Bring for Day Visits: Reusable water bottle, 3 towels, bathrobe, waterproof slippers, something to read, spa bag
Austria Thermen Map
There are about 40 Thermen in Austria. A spa is only allowed to use the name “Therme” (Thermal Bath) if it has its own spring, and its groundwater emerges at a temperature above 20° C (68° F).
The thermal waters of Austria are believed to have healing effects like strengthening the immune system (sulphureous water) and relaxation (brine baths).
Austria Therme Spa Complex
An Austrian Therme encompasses multiple spaces including:
Thermal Baths. This is the main bathhouse, which is made up of multiple pools of varying temperatures. Everyone is permitted in this space. Many thermal baths have designated pools for children, toddlers, swimmers, and adults.
Sauna Area. This is an adults-only, textile-free wellness area comprising multiple saunas, relaxation zones, pools, and showers. There’s usually a bistro, or bar, in the Sauna area.
Relaxation Rooms. Throughout the Therme, there are multiple relaxation and quiet zones.
Showers. There are showers in the Therme, Sauna Area, and Changing/Locker Area. It’s important to shower before bathing and after sauna sessions.
Restaurant. All visitors have access to a canteen-style restaurant.
Changing Room and Locker Room. Upon arrival, you are given a chip wristband, which gives you access to your own personal locker during their visit. You can also charge food, drinks, and extras (e.g. magazines, towels, bathrobe) to your wristband.
Treatment & Spa. Thermal Spas in Austria typically offer a myriad of treatments and massages. Depending on the spa, you may need to book spa treatment appointments in advance. Though, often times, you can sign up for a treatment when you arrive.
In most Thermen, spaces, with the exception of bathrooms, are not gendered. That means everyone, regardless of gender, intermixes in all spaces, including textile-free saunas.
If you’re interested in an exclusively women-only thermal spa experience, check out La Pura in Kamptal.
Also, the Therme Wien day spa has gendered sauna zones (women’s only, men’s only, and mixed).
Therme Pricing – Day Visitors
The cost of your visit depends on your age, how long you decide to stay (3 hours, all day, etc…), the time of check-in (evening tickets), and what areas you want access to (the sauna area is always an additional charge).
You will always have to pay the entrance to the Therme (the main bathhouse), even if you want to spend all your time in the Sauna World.
If you’re staying overnight in the Therme’s hotel, your room rate includes the entry to the Thermal Baths, Sauna, and other exclusive spaces for hotel guests only.
Here are some examples of how much it costs to visit an Austrian Therme.
Therme Wien Pricing
- 3 Hour Ticket: 26.50 EUR
- Day Ticket: 35.50 EUR
- Sauna Area: 10.50 EUR
- Relax! One Day Holiday: 94 EUR
- After Work Ticket (6 pm – closing): 30.90 EUR
St. Martin’s Therme Pricing
- 3 Hour Ticket: 28 EUR
- Day Ticket: 36 EUR
- Evening Ticket (5 pm till closing): 21 EUR (Sunday- Thursday); 27 EUR (Friday – Saturday).
- Sauna Area: 15 EUR
Which Therme Entry Ticket to Buy
Thermal Baths Only
When you arrive at a Therme, the first thing you have to do is purchase your entry ticket. Usually, you can decide between a 3-hour Therme ticket, or an all-day Therme ticket. Some Thermen have discounted early-bird and evening tickets as well.
This basic ticket gives you access to the main Thermal Bath complex, where you can swim and soak in various pools. You also have access to a number of resting/relaxation spaces, showers, a changing area with your own personal locker, and a Therme restaurant.
Thermal Baths & Sauna (Adults Only) – Recommended
In my experience, the best part of visiting an Austrian Therme is the sauna complex. Adults can purchase a Thermal Bath & Sauna combi ticket upon entering.
The Sauna Area usually contains 7 to 15 different saunas, pools, showers, resting rooms, and its own bistro/restaurant.
Throughout the day, Sauna Aufgüsse take place in specific saunas at specific times. A sauna Aufguss is an intensified sauna session, in which a Sauna master uses choreographed towel movements to circulate the hot air around the room.
Essential oils are often used as well. A Sauna Aufguss usually involves 3 cycles and lasts 15 minutes. After an Aufguss, it’s important to take a really cold shower to reduce your body temperature and then rest for a while.
Note: Saunas are always textile-free zones. You are not permitted to wear a bathing suit in any sauna, for hygienic reasons.
Sauna Etiquette and Tips
- Shower before/after a sauna session.
- Always shower before entering any pool.
- Do not wear your bathing suit, or any other clothing in the saunas
- Avoid getting sweat on wooden surfaces. Always place a towel between your body and the timber sauna surfaces.
- Avoid talking in the saunas.
- Speak very quietly throughout the sauna complex.
Access to thermal pools and saunas usually ends 30 minutes before the official closing times. This is called Badeschluss, which translates as “end of bathing.” This ensures that guests still have sufficient time to shower, dress, dry their hair, etc…, before the facilities close.
Therme Chip Wrist Band
After purchasing your entry ticket, you’ll be given a chip wristband. This wristband serves several functions, including:
Unlocking/locking your locker. During your visit, you can store your personal belongings in a locker, which you can lock/unlock using your wristband.
Payment for Food Consumption. You can purchase food and drinks with your wristband. When you exit the Therme, you’ll hand in your wristband and pay for anything you consumed during your visit.
Payment for Spa Treatments. If you partake in any add-on spa treatments, the total bill will be added to your wristband.
Sauna Access. If you have a sauna ticket, your wristband is programmed to let you into the sauna area.
Best Thermal Spas in Austria
Therme Wien: Day Spa in Vienna
Did you know that the largest thermal spa in Austria is located in Vienna?
Therme Wien is a massive 75,000 m² spa complex, comprising 26 indoor and outdoor pools, 18 saunas, multiple relaxation zones, a fitness center, treatment center, and canteen-style restaurant.
This Vienna day spa is conveniently located at the Oberlaa station on line 1 of the Vienna U-Bahn. That means that you can take the U1 from the city center to Therme Wien in 17 minutes.
Aside from the proximity to the inner district, Therme Wien is just an outstanding spa complex with immaculate facilities and an intentional layout.
The thermal bath area is made up of multiple indoor and outdoor pools and relaxation zones. It successfully creates a natural divide between children’s areas (diving pool, slide, infant and toddler pools) and adult areas, which we really appreciated.
We particularly love the sauna complex (ages 14+), a 2-level area with indoor and outdoor saunas and pools. Unlike most Austrian Thermen, Therme Wien has three sauna zones:
- Women’s only sauna area: 1 Finnish Sauna, 1 Organic Sauna, 2 Steam Rooms, 1 Tepidarium, Warm Whirlpool, Plunge Pool
- Men’s only sauna area: 2 Finnish Saunas, 2 Steam Rooms, 1 Laconium, Warm Whirlpool, Plunge Pool
- Mixed sauna area: 3 Finnish Saunas, 1 Organic Sauna, 3 Steam Rooms, 1 Laconium, 2 Warm Outdoor Pools, 1 Plunge Pool, 1 Kneipp Pool
Therme Wien offers entrance tickets for 3 hours, full-day, or after-work (6 pm till closing).
For the most comfortable experience, we suggest purchasing the Relax! One Day Holiday ticket. This VIP ticket gives you exclusive access to the Relax relaxation lounge with unlimited and complimentary refreshments (juice, water, coffee, tea), fruit, and snacks (dried fruit and nuts) all day.
You also get a spa bag, packed with two towels and a bathrobe, for your visit. Throughout the day, you can exchange your wet towels in the Relax lounge.
Other perks include a 12 EUR voucher, which you can redeem at the spa restaurant, or sauna bistrot. And, you get 15% off any spa massage treatments. You can book your massage in advance, or at the reception in the Relax lounge.
We both booked a 50-minute Sportmassage several days in advance. It was fantastic and definitely enhanced our thermal spa experience.
Aqua Dome: Day Spa and Spa Hotel in Tirol
Aqua Dome is a gorgeous, futuristic-looking thermal spa nestled in the Austrian Alps.
This Tirolean spa enjoys a scenic setting in Ötztal Valley, a 1 hour drive from Innsbruck.
Though Aqua Dome is a modern spa complex, people have been bathing in the Längenfeld hot springs since the 16th century. From 6000 feet underground, a sulfur spring bubbles up to the surface at a rate of 3-4 liters per second. Each Day, 80,000 liters of thermally heated spring water flow into Aqua Dome.
The spa complex comprises a Therme (thermal baths), sauna world, Spa 3000 (hotel guests only), fitness center, treatment and spa, and children’s world.
We’ve explained everything in detail in our guide to visiting Aqua Dome.
Staying in the Aqua Dome Hotel is also a really wonderful experience and perhaps the best way to experience this iconic spa. Read our Aqua Dome Hotel review to learn about hotel guest perks and our overall assessment.
Rogner Bad Blumau: Day Spa and Spa Hotel in Stryia
Bad Blumau is a thermal spa in Styria. It was designed by Friedensreich Hundertwasser, one of the greatest Austrian visual artists of the 20th century.
Hundertwasser’s artistry and philosophy of living in harmony with nature permeates every facet of the spa. A great enemy of the straight line, Hundertwasser endeavored to create a natural space featuring only organic shapes and lines. This manifests in walkable green roofs, uneven floors and asymmetrical windows.
The most compelling reason to visit this Austrian thermal spa is to simply marvel at Hundertwasser’s visionary architecture. Relaxation is secondary.
While we enjoyed visiting, we think the spa needs some updates including expanding the relaxation zones. It felt a bit crammed.
Learn more about this top Austrian spa in our Rogner Bad Blumau Hotel Review.
Thermal Spa Hotel Guests
If you’re staying in the Therme hotel, entry to the Therme and Sauna is included in your overnight stay. Additionally, hotel guests usually have access to exclusive spaces.
If you decide to stay in a Therme hotel, I recommend finding out when you can access the Therme/Sauna on your arrival day. When we stayed in Aqua Dome, we were able to enter the Therme as early as 9 am, even though the room check-in wasn’t until 3 pm.
On departure days, you usually have access to the Therme before check-out. If you want to extend your Therme access on your departure day, there may be a small fee.
Best Therme Spa Hotels in Austria
- Aqua Dome 4 Sterne Superior Hotel & Therme, Tirol. Read our Aqua Dome Hotel Review.
- Tauern Spa Hotel & Therme, Salzburg
- Linsberg Asia Hotel, Spa & Therme – Adults Only, Lower Austria
- St Martins Therme & Lodge, Burgenland
- Hotel SPA Resort Therme Geinberg, Upper Austria
- Falkensteiner Balance Resort Stegersbach – Adults only, Burgenland
- Hotel Rogner Bad Blumau, Styria. Read our Rogner Bad Blumau Hotel Review.
- Das Sonnreich – Thermenhotel Loipersdorf, Styria
- Avita Resort Bad Tatzmannsdorf, Burgenland
- Das Ronacher Therme & Spa Resort, Carinthia
- EurothermenResort Bad Ischl – Hotel Royal, Upper Austria. Read our Hotel Royal Bad Ischl review.
What to Bring to a Thermal Spa
- Reusable Water Bottle: Ion 1 Litre Water Bottle
- Something to Read: Kindle, Book, Magazine
- Bathrobe: day visitors can rent bathrobes for an extra fee
- 3 Towels: day visitors can rent towels for an extra fee
- Waterproof slippers with good traction: Crocs Women’s Swiftwater Sandal (I travel everywhere with these) or CROC Women’s Flip Flop Sandals
- Cosmetics: shampoo, soap, etc…
- Spa Bag like this Dejaroo Mesh Beach Bag to carry towels, reading materials, water bottle, and other belongings
Austria Trip Planning Essentials
When to Visit Austria
Summer and early Fall are our favorite seasons in Austria.
Getting around Austria
Austria has an excellent public transit system. We’ve used it extensively to travel throughout the country. We highly recommend using transit if you’re visiting cities (Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck, Graz, etc…), and/or doing hut-to-hut hikes.
Some areas like Mayrhofen, Schladming and Lech am Arlberg have wonderful seasonal transit systems in place (e.g. summer hiking buses). However, if you’re not visiting during the high season, bus frequencies are significantly reduced and it’s far easier to get around with your own vehicle.
If you’re planning on visiting multiple destinations across Austria, we recommend renting a car.
Use these road trip itineraries for trip planning inspiration:
- 2 Week Austria Road Trip – starting in Vienna
- 1 Week Austria Road Trip – starting in Salzburg or Munich
- 10-Day Bavarian Alps & Tyrolean Alps Road Trip – starting in Munich
We recommend using the Discovercars.com car rental reservation platform to search for and book car rentals. This easy-to-use booking platform compares car rental deals from 500+ trusted providers, so that you can choose the best option for your trip.
If you’re driving into Austria from a neighboring country, don’t forget to purchase a vignette at/near the border.
What to See & Do in Austria
- Go hiking in the Austrian Alps. Here are Favorite Day Hikes in Austria.
- Overnight in an Austrian mountain hut while hut-to-hut hiking in Austria.
- Visit a gorge like the Liechtenstein Gorge in Salzburg.
- Hike to a mountain lake like Lake Tappenkarsee in Salzburg, or Lake Drachensee in Tirol.
- Go Wine Tasting in South Styria.
- Marvel at the culture, music, and architecture of Vienna.
- Eat heartwarming mountain food in an Almhütte at Grosser Ahornboden in Tirol, or Ursprungalm in Styria.
- Drive the Grossglockner High Alpine Road in Hohe Tauern National Park.
- Visit the castles, monasteries, and wine taverns of the Wachau Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.