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What could be better for the jet-lagged, stressed-out traveler than a spa visit? When you are finally prone on the massage table and your face is nestled into the cradle, you know you can safely “turn off your mind, relax, and float downstream,” as John Lennon sang.
If the treatment happens to be a massage at Kupu Kupu Barong Villas and Tree Spa in Ubud, Bali, your last vision before drifting into semi-consciousness is a perfect bowl of rose petals in water that is placed beneath the face cradle. Not bad after flying 8,000 miles.
The world has a delicious menu of spa treatments. In a new slide show on Bing Travel, we explore the classics. Blue Lagoon Spa in Iceland encourages you to soak in geothermal brine. Les Bains de Marrakech in Morocco is the place to experience the hammam, a particularly vigorous massage that will leave your skin as soft as a slow-cooked tagine. Tanjung Aru resort in Borneo serves up a green tea scrub and volcanic mud wrap along with your massage and facial.
Relaxation is a beautiful thing, but you can also visit a spa to get your life back on track. Places like Canyon Ranch in Tucson, The Ashram near Malibu, Calif., and The Ananda Spa in the Himalayas focus on wellness and lifestyle changes. Visit them, and you might take home the best souvenir of all: a new you.
Have you enjoyed a classic spa treatment in an exotic locale? Share your blissful experiences with other spa aficionados in the comments section.
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The Nature Island of the Caribbean is Dominica. It is a lush tropical rainforest island located between Martinique and Guadaloupe in the Eastern Caribbean.
There are a number of local spots here to bathe in the 'hot water' as it is stated locally, and there are a number of commercial venues that range from ultra small, and very charming to larger, less ambiant but still very unique.
My favourite and one I go to as often as possible is Ti Kwen Glo Cho (little corner of hot water in Creole) which is owned and operated by Henry and June. It is a fabulous venue of traditionally styled Victorian Tubs, into which falls the tepid hot sulphur water. The water arrives to the tubs through bamboo tubes and fall in a water massage velocity to ease all of your sore muscles. Also, there is a lovely waterfall of ice cold water, Flam bo lanterns, a larger tub for groups, a small organic farm and a great little bar with many local rums all designed with medicianl purposes. Henry can tell you about all of them and their various traditional healing properties. As well, a mud bath near the cold water falls can round up your spa day.
My favourite thing at Ti Kwen is to go in the later evening, watch the stars twinking from the absolute blackness of the Wotten Waven area and close my eyes and...
Blue Lagoon is very pretty, but it is made with the run off water from a geothermal plant. The water is a pretty blue but has a strong sulfer smell. Bring your best shampoo for afterwards, and ladies put your hair up before dipping unless you want a tangled, sticky mess. The hotel and locker rooms are very clean and luxorious.
The best of the best is the Mud Baths at Tintamare Island, off the French side of St. Martin, in the Carribean. Take the Tiko-Tiko Catamaran Cruise from Orient Beach's south end to Tintamare where your hosts will prepare a mineral mud bath treatment that you will never forget!
I've been to the Blue Lagoon in Iceland. Wow is all I can say, and the weather was not favorable yet the spa was incredible. It was raining, it was a dark evening but the water and the facility are rewarding. You feel like you've had an entire body massage after just 45 minutes in the soothing waters. Can't wait to go again.
I have been to the Blue Lagoon in Iceland a couple of times. My sister is there right now. Tomorrow is her 50th birthday and she will be enjoying a full body massage, exfoliating scrub and a warm soak in the geothermal waters of the this spa. Even in the middle of winter, the waters are very relaxing. Wish it were me! Be sure to stop in the gift shop and bring some of the lotions and scrub back with you!
I have been to the Blue Lagoon many times...back when it was free and there were no amenities. It was great!!! It was my favorite place in Iceland.
I've been to the Blue Lagoon. Very nice, very clean, very relaxing, very $$$. I had a massage from a muscular woman in the lagoon. She managed to slip her finger to the top of my butt crack. Other than that, it was awesome. Watch out for hot spots. The mini water falls have a lot of power!!
The best I have been to is Ojo Caliente in New Mexico. Strawberry Park near Steamboat Springs is also very nice.
If in either of these areas, it is well worth the time to check out both of these places!
Blue Lagoon was one of my favourites, also the Nordica Hotel ( now Hilton ) in Iceland. I have one that tops them all is in Goa, India. Ayurvedic massage at the Leela is a must do!
The best massage I have ever had was at the Westin Maui Resort and Spa in Maui, Hawaii. After a shower and soak in the hot tub I enjoyed a traditional Lomi Lomi (I think thats how you spell it) massage. There was lots of strethcing movements similar to a thai massage. After I was most relaxed I enjoyed a cup of hot tea in their relaxation room. A room with plush chaise lounge chairs all set facing floor to ceiling windows overlooking the ocean. As I sat there I spotted whales jumping out of the water! It was an absolutely amazing experience!
The Caldea geothermal waters in Andorra are heaven, especially after the long drive through the Pyrenees to get there!
We went to Turkey on Honeymoon . Our hotel suggested a Turkish bath..after looking at the brochures, we decided we wanted a REAL Turkish bath...not some posh overpriced spa deal so we wandered down to the marketplace and backstreets of Kushardashi We found the place. What an experience. Fat Turkish men (no women) walking around naked without a care in the world. At first we were a bit nervous but then we thought "What the hell" We had an amazing experience. We were rubbed, scrubbed, loofahd, steamed and massaged! It was fantastic (and I never felt ao clean!)
I have enjoyed Rancho Rio Caliente in the state of Jalisco, Mexico, just a few miles from Guadalajara. I've been there several times. The most bang for the buck! --and the hot river is natural! The pools, co-ed and separate ones for men and women (nude, you know) are available almost 24/7. They are closed for cleaning frequently because no chemicals are added to the hot water, but some are always open. The food is simple and excellent; vegetarian choices always available. Massage, accupuncture, yoga, hiking (before brekfast), horseback riding, campfires, etc., etc.
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