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TRAVEL: Czech out the land that heals

Saturday, 24th November, 2018 9:00am

Story by Jack Gleeson
TRAVEL: Czech out the land that heals

The impressive Hotel Imperial, Karlovy Vary

TRAVEL: Czech out the land that heals

The impressive Hotel Imperial, Karlovy Vary

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A SPA holiday is a fantastic way to, relax, reenergise and recharge the batteries but in many European countries they’re also a prescribed treatment for a variety of medical conditions.

For generations, natives of central and east European countries, on doctors’ orders, have packed their bags and headed off to mountain or coastal retreats where the emphasis is more on medical treatment than a relaxing holiday.

These spas are seen as an essential part of the healing process and they’re staffed with fully qualified consultants, doctors and nurses who guide clients through programmes specifically designed to treat whatever condition they’ve arrived with.

Some of the best spas in Europe can be found in Czech Republic, where tourism bosses are now promoting medical treatment breaks to the Irish market.

The country is home to more than 30 spas spread across its diverse landscapes. And they include some of the oldest and most spectacular in Europe.

The country’s spa industry is home to top balneology experts, highly qualified medical staff and the highest number of certificate holders among EU member states.

So, let’s take a look at some of Czech Republic’s leading spas.

Located on a hill above the Czech Republic’s largest spa town, Karlovy Vary, Hotel Imperial uses locally sourced spa treatments, some of which date back 650 years.

The town’s thermal spring water runs directly into the five-star hotel and it has been used to treat everything from skin conditions to digest tract diseases since the 1500s.

Treatment is available around the clock and there’s over 50 medical employees including 24-hour nurses, therapists, masseurs and a spectrum of treatment from physiotherapy to healthcare education.

For details and prices for Hotel Imperial visit


Lázne Belohrad was the first spa facility to win the prestigious quality award from the European Spa Association in Brussels.

Its unique selling point is locally sourced peat, used to help guests unwind.

Located in a remote town, the local spa company offer three interconnected spa hotels, a selection of villas and the modern four star Tree of Life resort.

Peat has been used in the area for more than a century to speed up the regeneration of painful and strained tissue and it’s also said to be good for skin conditions.

For details on Lázne Belohrad see


If peat sounds like an unconventional way to treat medical conditions, how about radon?

The world’s first radon spa, Spa Jáchymov, is Czech Republic’s main centre for the treatment of respiratory tract diseases.

Its story began in 1864 when local miners extracting ore struck water in which they bathed to heal minor bruises and injuries. This led to the development of balneology – the study of medicinal springs and the therapeutic effects of bathing in them.

Today, the mine is owned by Radon Spa Jáchymov and it attracts thousands of clients every year seeking treatment for various of respiratory conditions.

Details on Radon Spa Jáchymov can be found at


As radon is central to Spa Jáchymov so iodine-bromine is to the wheelchair friendly Sanatoria Klimkovice, a neurorehabilitation clinic and spa.

Its water baths are used to treat both children and adults with psychomotor disabilities.

The spa’s unique, highly saline water is said to be more therapeutic than the Dead Sea, assisting in the treatment of musculoskeletal disorders, neurological and gynaecological diseases.

More details can be found at


Czech Republic is also home to the oldest spa in central Europe – Teplice Spa. Situated between the Ore Mountains and the Central Bohemian Uplands, the ‘Little Paris of Bohemia’ specialises in treating musculoskeletal ailments.

This is where Beethoven unwound while composing his famous ninth symphony following advice from his doctor. It’s said to be the only spa in the world that has thermal mineral water of a bicarbonate-sulphate-sodium type, with a high content of minerals and radon. 

The Teplice spas attracts clients looking to improve problems with joints, the spine, back problems and related headaches.

Find out more at To find out more about medical spas in Czech Republic see

The mineral waters are pumped directly into the spas’ therapy pools.

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