Top 5 Relaxing Hot Springs in Taiwan

A photo of the largest public hot spring pool at Jioujhihze Hot Spring, it is large enough that it accommodates dozens of people.

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Taiwan’s hot springs are one of the island’s top attractions for wellness-oriented tourists. With over one hundred hot springs around the island, Taiwan has one of the greatest concentrations of hot springs in the world. Most large cities will have several hot spring regions, each with a cluster of hotels, to choose from. In most regions, multiple bathing options are available, ranging from public pools and day spas to simple hotels with en-suite bathing and even all-inclusive luxury spas. 

With some small exceptions, almost all of Taiwan’s developed hot springs are surrounded by verdant mountains or located in relaxing natural environments. Many of Taiwan’s hot springs are also located in deep valleys and on or besides the rivers and creeks. What could be more relaxing than bathing in a hot spring in the middle of a forest, or perched over the ocean. Taiwan’s hot springs are perfect destinations for wellness getaways and some well-deserved rest and relaxation—no wonder Taiwan is consistently rated as Asia’s happiest country, and one of the top in the world! 

Jioujhihze Hot Spring in Datong Township, Yilan County

Taiwan’s Most Natural Hot Spring Spa

A bather enjoying a private hot spring pool within the larger public open-air hot spring at Jioujhihze Hot Spring.
Steam rises from egg-boiling pools, obscuring the forest and valley in the background.
Boiled corn is shown; steam rises from a boiling pool of hot spring water in the background.
A suspension bridge crosses the river besides Jioujhihze Hot Spring.
A trail leads through the forest in Taipingshan National Forest Recreation Area.
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Jioujhihze Hot Spring, also known as Jiuzhize Hot Spring, is a semi-remote hot spring located just inside Taipingshan National Forest Recreation Area in Yilan’s mountainous Datong District. Unlike most hot springs close to Taipei, Jioujhihze Hot Spring is surrounded completely by subtropical forest.  

Due to its location inside of a National Forest, there are no hotels, no restaurants and no businesses nearby. On-site facilities are limited to a bathhouse and a welcome center which sells basic refreshments and snacks. Jioujhihze also features dedicated hot-spring-powered egg-boiling pools where visitors can enjoy boiling corn and eggs. For the more adventurous, a suspension bridge crosses the Duowang River and leads to an adjacent short nature trail.  

The water at Jioujhihze Hot Spring is slightly alkaline with a pH of 8.87 and rich in minerals such as sulfate, calcium, and magnesium. The waters here are believed to have therapeutic properties that can help ease a range of health problems, such as muscle pain, arthritis, and skin conditions.

Jinshan Hot Spring in Jinshan District, New Taipei City

Best Hot Spring for Ocean-Gazing

Bathers enjoy an outdoor hot spring while gazing at the ocean during twilight.
Bathers enjoy a natural-looking hot spring pool made with cement, rocks, and bamboo
The sun rises over an outdoor hot spring pool in Jinshan.
Bathers enjoy a moonlight soak Governor-General Hot Spring in Jinshan.
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Jinshan Hot Spring is located in the coastal district of Jinshan in New Taipei City. There are several hot spring sources here which vary in acidity and mineral content, including seawater-fed springs, sulfuric springs, carbonic acid springs and iron oxide springs.

The hot springs here were formed after the earthquake and tsunami of November 23, 1867. While the area was devastated, new hot springs were discovered after the ocean waters receded. The hot spring water at Jinshan Hot Spring is clear and odorless, and quite warm—it is 90 degrees celsius at the source. 

Jinshan is one of the only areas in Taiwan where one can enjoy hot spring bathing by the ocean. The local spa, Governor-General Hot Spring, used to serve as a guesthouse for the Japanese governor-general of Taiwan. The second floor features outdoor bathing pools with views of the ocean and the mountains of Yangmingshan National Park. The slightly acidic water here not only moisturizes the skin but also stimulates blood circulation.

Taian Hot Spring in Taian Township, Miaoli County

Where Nature is Integrated Into Architectural Design

The main building of Onsen Papawaqa rises from behind foliage as it seemingly blends into the forest surrounding it.
A bather enjoys a soak in a hot spring underneath a tree.
A bather soaks at night in a pool surrounded by sub-tropical plants.
A first-person view from within a hot spring, jungle can be seen in the distance beyond the hot spring.
Private indoor bathing pools sit next to floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook the nature outside.
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Taian Hot Spring is the home of one of Taiwan’s most conceptual hot spring hotels: Onsen Papawaqa. This hotel integrates natural aging processes into the building’s aesthetic. Exposed raw concrete, aged wood, and “growing” natural vegetation are all part of the experience here. The Taian Guanzhi Hot Spring Hotel features numerous outdoor bathing areas that integrate local flora, and also includes separate nude bathing areas. Each room includes floor-to-ceiling windows and river views.

Another local favorite is the classic King’s Resort. While the rooms here aren’t as design-oriented, the extensive outdoor bathing area features relaxing mountain views and the hot spring water is of excellent quality. 

Taian Hot Spring features slightly alkaline sodium bicarbonate hot spring water that is generally odorless and colorless. The mineral water here is said to help with muscle pain, joint stiffness, and is generally beneficial for the skin.

Guanziling Hot Spring in Baihe District, Tainan City

Taiwan’s Most Famous Mud Hot Spring

Bathers enjoy an open-air hot spring within a cave-like structure.
Bathers enjoy bathing in an open-air hot spring pool.
A hot spring bather soaking in muddy water, a thermometer reads 41.6 degrees Celsius.
Chickens, mounted onto bamboo, are roasted over an open fire.
A fire burns in a hole in the rock above a pool of water.
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The only mud spring in Taiwan, Tainan’s Guanziling Hot Spring area offers a truly unique wellness experience. Over a dozen hot spring hotels offer hot spring baths and mud spas, and other healthy attractions include short day hikes, and delicious kiln-roasted chicken restaurants. Sightseeing options include Fire and Water Spring and Erjiewan Vista.

The water at Guanziling Hot Spring is known to contain high levels of sodium bicarbonate, which gives it an alkaline pH level of around 7.8 to 8.6. This type of mineral composition is believed to have therapeutic benefits for the skin and body, such as improving circulation, reducing inflammation, and promoting relaxation.

Zhaori Hot Spring (Green Island) in Ludao Township, Taitung County

Seaside Hot Spring for Sunrise Viewing

Travelers sit on the coast watching the sun, a circular hot spring pool appears in the foreground.
Hot spring pools lay next to the coast made up of volcanic rock and golden sand.
Three hot spring pools are located in a tidal area surrounded by volcanic rock.
A first-person view from within the hot spring, a bather's feet emerge from the water and Green Island's coastal mountains can be seen in the background.
Multiple tiers of hot spring pools lead down to the volcanic coast at Green Island's Zhaori Hot Spring.
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Zhaori Hot Spring is located on the southeastern tip of Green Island, which is off the coast of Taitung. Formerly known as “Asahi Hot Spring” during the Japanese colonial era, Zhaori Hot Spring is famous for being one of the world’s only saltwater-fed hot springs. The springs, which combine a mixture of saltwater and freshwater, are heated by volcanic lava deep under Green Island.

While the hot spring facilities at Zhaori Hot Spring are rather basic, the benefit of visiting is experiencing the natural surroundings. Zhaori has three open-air pools and a large spa pool where visitors can listen to the sound of the surf, enjoy the sunrise, or watch the stars as they soak away the stress. Visitors should note that the three open-air pools located in the tidal zone are closed during the winter months due to rougher sea conditions. However, the large spa pool remains open throughout the year.

In addition to hot spring soaking, Zhaori’s comfortable environment and quiet location make it an ideal place to watch the sunrise, stargaze, or simply relax and unwind. There are several hiking trails nearby that offer beautiful views of Green Island’s coastline and natural scenery. Visitors can also explore the nearby Zhaori Visitor Center, which provides information on the history and ecology of the area.

Ferry service to Green Island takes approximately 1 hour and is available from Taitung’s Fugang Fishing Harbor.

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