So you’re planning a trip to Italy, and wondering if the thermal pools – Cascate del Mulino, are worth visiting?
Well, let us put you out of your misery – the pools definitely are worth visiting! Although; we would certainly say it is important to visit under certain circumstances to have the best experience.
So, whether you are considering going on an Italian road trip, or want to travel exclusively to see the thermal pools, we will let you know why the trip to Cascate Del Mulino will truly be worth it!
Below are the many reasons why it’s worth visiting Cascate Del Mulino, and a few reasons why not!
What Is Cascate Del Mulino?
Cascate Del Mulino is a series of natural hot springs located in the Tuscany area, near the small village of Saturnia. It is known by several different names including Cascate Del Gorello – not to be confused with ‘Terme di Saturnia‘ which is a completely different area.
Cascate Del Mulino is home to a series of cascading warm waterfalls. The warm water passes under the surrounding fields before making its way to the falls. Below the waterfalls there is an array of large, shallow warm pools. Many people choose to lounge in these pools and enjoy the warmth. The hot springs are 37°C all year round!
The pools contain high levels of sulphur, which is said to have healing properties for the skin. After you have washed the sulphur off your skin you should be able to feel how soft your skin has become. The hot springs are known to naturally detox your skin, they are also great for skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis.
These milky blue pools surround an old mill which adds to the allure of the area. The Cascate Del Mulino pools are unbelievably beautiful with steam rising above them making the pools incredibly inviting!
How To Get To The Thermal Pools
Wanting to go to the pools is easy, planning your trip there is another thing completely. The thermal pools are essentially in the middle of nowhere. Located in the countryside, these hot springs are not really near to any large town. Positioned between Florence and Rome, you will need to take quite a long journey to reach Cascate Del Mulino.
Due to its location, the only real way to get to the Thermal pools is by car. Public transport in such a rural area is both complicated and limited. Travelling from Rome, it is a 2 hr 30 min drive to the pools, alternatively, travelling from Florence is a 2 hr 40 min drive.
The pools are fairly easy to find once you are in the right area. When you can see the steam rising above the trees you know you’re in the right area. There are some small sign posts, but to be honest, following the steam is the easiest.
When to visit the Thermal Pools
Cascate Del Mulino is a natural feature and is therefor free to enter and open all year round 24/7. This means there is no right or wrong time to visit these beautiful pools. These are a few suggestions on when to visit to have the best experience.
Because of their unique beauty, the pools can get pretty congested especially during the summer months. When the pools are busy it makes it more difficult to enjoy them. Another issue with visiting the pools in summer is the air temperature – when it is 35°C outside, a warm bath is the least refreshing thing in the world!
Spring and Autumn, in the shoulder season, the pools are considerably less busy and the climate is still temperate so you’re not stood freezing in your swimwear. This is a great time to enjoy the warm thermal pools.
In our opinion, the best season to visit the thermal pools is Winter. Winter is the best as there is a good contrast between the air temperature and water temperature. Climbing into the cozy pools feels like such a treat – a warm bath on a cold day.
No matter what season you visit, there will always be a good number of people at the falls during the day time. To get the best experience we recommend visiting at sunset or sunrise. We visited at sunrise in early April and for a time were the only people there. Having the hot springs to yourself makes it an unforgettable experience; it also makes your holiday photos a lot more impressive!
Top Tips For Visiting Cascate Del mulino
1 – The Smell
There is no nice way of saying this, but Cascate Del Mulino smells absolutely horrendous. The sulphur water makes the whole surrounding area stink of rotten eggs. There is not much you can do to alleviate the smell but just prepare for it! We were not expecting the stench to be as awful as it was!
2 – Wash Sulfur Off
Because of its ghastly smell, you will want to wash the thermal pool water off of your skin and swimwear. If you don’t wash it off, the smell will linger with you wherever you are travelling to next.
There are no shower facilities at Cascate Del Mulino so you will need to fashion a shower of your own. We were lucky that we could enjoy a warm shower in our campervan but simply washing yourself down with bottled water on site would do the trick.
3 – Bring Water Shoes
Be sure to bring some sort of footwear to wear in the hot springs. The pools are made up from porous rock which are quite painful to walk across without footwear. There are also some stones at the bottom of the shallow pools which can be quite uncomfortable underfoot.
4 – Parking
Although visiting the Thermal pools is completely free, parking unfortunately is not – well kind of. There are a couple of options for parking. There is a large car park right beside the falls which is free but unfortunately not always open. We arrived early in the morning for a sunrise dip and this was too early for the car park.
There is another car park a bit further away from the pools – around a 5 minute walk. Be sure to bring a few euros for the pay machines.
On the whole i think it’s pretty easy to say that yes, Cascate Del Mulino is definitely worth visiting! It’s a once in a lifetime type of experience which is unforgettable. If you are taking a road trip around Italy be sure to add this to your itinerary!
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If you have any questions about Cascate Del Mulino, leave us a comment, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.