Tangyu Hot Springs
Located in Lantian County, 38km (23mi) south of Xian City, Lantian Tangyu Hot Springs, also called East Tangyu Hot Springs, was once the royal bathing site, as well as the origin of China’s bathing culture. It is one of the best hot springs around Xian.
Tangyu Hot Springs, which was called Shimen Hot Springs, started being used during the Han Dynasty (202BC-220AD) when Emperor Wu built Shanglin Garden, an imperial garden in Tangyu District. During the Tang Dynasty (618-907), emperor Xuanzong built Daxing Hot Springs Courtyard there and then expanded it with five bathing pools.
With an average temperature of 58C (136F), the Tangyu Hot Springs water is abundant in minerals beneficial to skin and muscle diseases. It was also called “Water of Virtue” and “Mysterious Water” and the hot springs werenamed "No.1 Hot Springs in the World". It has become a famous spot for people around Xian to spend their holidays. The water used to be called Peach Blossom Water because one can enjoy, while bathing, a view of the peach blossom in spring. It was said that “the peach blossom water is worth more than gold”.
As the largest open-air hot springs in northwest China covering an area of over 40,000 square meters (47,840 square yards), Tangyu Hot Springs can receive 10,000 visitors per day. There are many bathing pools to choose from, such as Man’s Bath, Women’s Bath, Liyu Bath, Baths of Five Blessings, different VIP bathrooms and several independent bathing courtyards; the water temperature which decreases progressively from 60C (140F) to 40C (104F) is suitable for people of different body conditions. The five bathing pools remaining from the Tang Dynasty respectively named Rongxue, Yunv, Lianzhu, Shuyuand Zhuoying connect with each other by small waterfalls, and the largest one, Zhuoying, collects water from the above four springs and forms a beautiful small waterfall. Another pool called Round Sky and Square Earth with a square pool and round roof reflects the ancient nature concept. You could also try the stone bath, lying on the warm stone slabs, with hot water flowing under it.
The Site Park of ancient Daxing Hot Spring Courtyard is now open to the public, with eight different ancient bathing pools. Visitors could take a bath in the independent courtyard, sit in the sauna drinking a cup of coffee or tea made with hot spring water and forget all their worries.
Apart from taking baths, visitors could also hang around in the town’s pedestrian and food street, go boating or go fishing in the nearby lake, or watch shows at the theater if interested. Mountain climbers can visit Dongfeng Mountain and Xifeng Mountain on both sides of the hot springs spot.
It is advised to bring your own towel and bath robe as the quality of the ones provided can’t be guaranteed.
How to get to Tangyu Hot Springs
Take bus No. 920(To Tangyu) at Xian South Bus Station and get off at Tangyu Station. Walk along Hot Spring Avenue for 460m (500yd) and turn right. Continue walking along Tangyi Road for 300m (330yd) to reach Tangyu Hot Springs.
CNY138. Free of charge for children under 1.2m (3.9ft).
Note: If you have some friends who can read Chinese, you could ask them to buy ticket of Tangyu Hot Springs online for you. It’s much cheaper than those bought at the ticket office.