Brazil is a country often associated with water, with long, golden beaches stretching the coastal perimeter, it’s often the beaches and the many nearby waterparks that come to mind.
Yet like the majority of South American regions, Brazil is home to a vast array of lush hot springs where tourists and locals alike can soak in healing water.
As it turns out, thermal bathing has been popular since the turn of the 18th century, if not before. Various well-placed towns’ economies have developed majorly from hot springs tourism. The country is home to the majority of the Amazon Rainforest, which does contain its own hot springs but is largely uncharted.
In Brazil these heated natural phenomena are known as ‘agua termais.’ Let’s find out yet more about the hot springs in Brazil and their various spots in the vast, tropical regions.
The Most Popular Hot Springs in Brazil
In the nation’s central regions close to the vicinity of the capital you can find many well-frequented hot springs.
Many have resort-type hotels with various features built around them like the popular Mato Grosso Aguas Quentes with its water slides and rock-lined pools.
In the more southern regions like Santa Catarina, you’ll find water parks with pools containing water from hot springs along with other natural features like the tiered, hot spring-fed waterfall at Cascade Nazzari.
Caldas Novas is a resort town in the state of Goiás, 300 km from the capital. It contains what is considered the largest hydrothermal source in the world, and the highest number of hotels.
The waters are housed in a complex containing numerous hot springs renowned for their health benefits attracting both people seeking long term treatment and daily visitors.
There are 86 active wells in all here with temperatures varying between 93 and 134 °F. This is easily the most popular and well-known destination for thermal springs, and the city can host literally thousands of visitors every month during some periods.
The complex includes numerous hotels and resorts with their own features as well as a vibrant culture that offers endless exploration.
Fervedouro Bela Vista
In the central State of Tocantins, the Fervedouros and most notably the Bela Vista make it onto many must-see lists when it comes to Brazilian hot springs.
Located in the Jalapao region, the Fervedouro is a unique experience in itself, many describe it as floating in a bottle of champagne due to the subterranean river that causes the pool to gurgle.
Combine this with the remote tropical surrounding that offers a quiet reprise from the busy cities of brazil, the 75°F soak is an unforgettable one.
Águas Termais do Morro Vermelho
If you are planning on spending some time exploring and want a chance to cool down instead of warm-up, the Águas Termais do Morro Vermelho offers a relaxing cold soak with a picturesque backdrop.
Visitors are welcome to explore the surrounding area and uncover one of the many waterfalls that feed into the cold pools.
The location is remote, and travel by car can be difficult depending on the traffic, but there are several accommodations in the vicinity.
Bica Natural do Caixa D’aço
Located in the southern region, Bica Natural do Caixa D’aco offers up beaches framed by the forest. It offers up many trails along the Trinidade beaches that lead up to natural pools.
The pool itself, only a meter deep, offers a unique view with the soaking area protected from the open sea by large stones.
This is a popular area for locals and tourists alike, and it can get crowded during the busier season and at certain times.
The remote location is also accessible by water ferry and many people find the jungle trails just as enticing as a soak in the waters.
Termas de Araxá
One of the most popular spa retreats in brazil, the Termas de Araza is rich in history, reflected in the preservation of the are and historical information on site.
The old-fashioned structure was built between 1938 and 1944, aiming to offer a refined luxurious experience for visitors. Others find the location imbues an atmosphere of peace and esotericism.
Different types of massages, treatments, and baths are featured alongside other activities for wellness. The facilities are reported as obviously well-maintained and clean.
Given the history of the area, the inclusion of nearby luxurious accommodations allows visitors to get the most out of Termas de Araxá.
Types and Origins of Hot Springs in Brazil
Thermal springs are linked to various different heat sources with geological and topographic characteristics.
They can be connected to volcanic activity or tectonic backgrounds like continental collisions and fractures. The thermal springs are often fed from completely different configurations.
For years it was thought that volcanic activity was producing geothermal heat in Brazil’s hot springs. Maybe a volcano had existed in the area and had its crater infiltrated by rainwater. It was thought this water was heated at great depths before returning to the surface by way of cracks in the rock.
As it turned out though, the hot springs in Brazil are related entirely to deep thermal reservoirs. In the central region of Brazil where hot springs are rife, they are largely distributed in different rock types.
In the Chapada dos Veadeiros region, 12 geothermal springs were identified, studied, and eventually classified as non-magmatic and fault-related.
The only recharge source was identified as rainwater, with the groundwater flowing southwest until it reached a point where various processes induced upward flow to the hot springs areas.