There is nothing quite like taking a plunge in hot thermal water to de-frost your inner-core! I trudged up to the Bagni Bernabo and stood looking out over snow covered Bagni di Lucca musing over the fact that for this time of the year there is barely any water in the river Lima. At the risk of sounding like a ‘meteo’ bird, the weather is rather unusual these days. Freezing but as dry as a biscuit with high winds that cut right through you. So it was wonderful to step into the neo-classical atmosphere of the recently renewed baths and be greeted by Valentina. She speaks impeccable English and gave me a tour of the beautifully appointed treatment rooms, each with its own original marble bath and then on to the huge marble sunken pool with its gush of steaming thermal water.
I loved the ‘cave’ wall which in a couple of weeks time will be turned into a contemporary glass steam room with sky lights letting in natural light.
The whole place is tranquil and whilst I expected to be hit by some sort of thermal smell (for those of you who have been to Rotorua you will know what I mean!) the baths are filled with crystal clear thermal waters instead of murky brown. The mineral content of these baths claim to improve all sorts of skin conditions and have been lauded since the time of the Romans. As far as I was concerned just sinking into that hot water was therapy enough, but I did come away feeling incredibly relaxed and cleansed.