The five Oshtavski mineral springs

Location of the springs

If you have never heard of the Oshtav mineral springs, today is your lucky day! As their name suggests, they are located around one of the most original settlements in southwestern Bulgaria – the village of Oshtava.

Although not very large, Oshtava remains a beautiful village, surrounded by stunningly beautiful nature at the foot of Pirin Mountain. It has 15 neighborhoods that are scattered among pine forests and meadows around the passing river Devil’s, which is better known as Sheitan Dere.

Due to its high altitude here you can enjoy the following peaks:

  • Vihren
  • Pirin
  • Kamenititsa
  • Pleshki
  • Albutin
  • Sinanitsa

In the land of the picturesque village are located the famous mineral springs, which are visited annually by thousands of Bulgarians. The Oshtav mineral springs or known under their other name “Banite” are a group of five healing springs.

However, only two of them have a practical application and are accordingly used for treatment by visitors. Also, the hydrothermal pools are located at an altitude of 600 m.

The springs in which you will be able to dive are respectively:

  • Hot spring (Vryalata Banya)
  • The lukewarm spring (Hladnata Banya)

To be further informed before going to them, it is important to know that Vryalata Banya is located in the village of Oshtava, while Hladnata Banya is located in the village of Stara Kresna. The water temperature is from 30 to 65 degrees, which makes it more than perfect for general strengthening of the body.

Poorly mineralized, clear and colorless water will affect you really well. Whether you visit the Hot or the Lukewarm spring, we guarantee that the experience will be worth it, so don’t think about it at all.

Why do people visit them?

Mineral springs around the world are known to be natural healers of many different diseases. Before science could prove it, people instinctively knew that spending some time in these hot springs was beneficial to them.

As a matter of fact, they have been used by humans for millennia and are most widely accepted in Europe and Japan. According to many scientific studies, they have been found to have a number of therapeutic benefits.

This is actually the main reason why all people visit them en masse. The springs in Bulgaria usually reach temperatures of 37 to 50 degrees, and the waters are characterized by a low level of mineralization. This applies with the same force to the Oshtava mineral springs, which are a very preferred destination.

They, in turn, are fully capable of helping in the following circumstances:

  • diseases of the musculoskeletal system
  • cardiovascular disease
  • inflammatory-gynecological diseases
  • skin diseases and many others

Also do not forget that there are indoor mud baths near the Oshtav mineral springs. One of the biggest advantages of mud baths is that they completely eliminate stress. The warm and soft mud can relax the muscles and calm the mind, and when you combine this with a visit to the springs, your soul will thank you.

What do they help?

Balneotherapy in mineral springs is a very popular practice, which has many more benefits than more people think. This healing practice even has a special name – phangotherapy. In fact, such treatments have a very rich history, which, as we have said, dates back to antiquity.

Transdermal absorption is the main culprit for our body being able to be healed by these special waters. Although the skin is a great barrier, we must not forget that it is also capable of leaking substances. And this automatically allows the passage of various minerals.

In general, medicinal springs contain the following substances in their waters:

  • Potassium
  • magnesium
  • calcium
  • sodium
  • sulfate
  • iron
  • phosphate and many others

All have unique healing properties. That is why when you soak in these springs, you get a healthy and safe dose. Even if you don’t do it often, you will still be able to absorb small doses of minerals, thanks to transdermal function. 

It has been scientifically proven that soaking in hot springs can be a great way to perform a natural detox on your skin. This is possible due to the saturated amount of silica in the water. In addition, it can soften dry and rough skin.

Even if you suffer from permanent skin diseases, do not lose hope, because the healing pools are fully capable of helping you in this regard. It has been proven that the content of minerals in them works flawlessly against acne, eczema and even psoriasis. 

This includes other conditions such as joint pain or arthritis. Immersion in superior waters will alleviate pain receptors. That is why a number of experts recommend such therapies, but before embarking on this adventure we advise you to consult your doctor. 

Another interesting fact is that sulfates in water can provide anti-inflammatory benefits for bones and joints, and in some cases even have benefits in the ingestion of water – it prevents colds and infections.

For this practice to be successful, it is recommended to look for reservoirs that are safe for consumption(such as the Ostavski mineral springs). Be careful, as heavily loaded mineral water can be dangerous to your health.

How to get to them from Lucky Bansko Hotel?

If you are vacationing in Lucky Bansko Hotel, but still want to add a little variety to your family vacation, we recommend that you take a walk to Oshtavski Mineral Baths. However, be patient for this purpose, as the route will take about 1 hour and 15 minutes.

The springs can be reached both from the village of Oshtava and from the village of Stara Kresna. In case you love the adventure, we recommend you to visit and explore the two villages – when you leave Lucky Bansko you need to head to Simitli and follow the signs for Stara Kresna.

The total distance you will pass is 68.6 km, but the experience will definitely be worth it, so don’t think about it at all. Immersion in mineral springs is more complete than you imagine and will reward your body with many benefits.

In addition, while travelling you can visit a number of places and landmarks that is again worth seeing. A typical example of this are the MominaSkala National Park and the rafting complexes, which will prove to you how extreme teamwork can be in the turbulent waters of the Struma River.