Wednesday, 14 October 2015


How do I start the morning in Samosir. Soaking in hot spring while enjoying a cup of hot Bandrek. [coffee] [snowflake] 
Pangururan, north Sumatra, Indonesia, source.

Regionally speaking there are not many theme's attracting attention, so let's start off this posting elsewhere on the globe.

Problems in the land of free soaking; authorities have first taken action to limit use of Umpqua hot springs (oregon, U.S.A.) after concluding that the E. Coli bacteria count was way over the limit (yuck). 
Further testing has now revealed the opposite (Oregon Live, Oct. 9):
'The Umpqua Hot Springs, about 70 miles east of Roseburg, closed to the public due to "very high" E. coli counts two weeks ago, and now forest officials say the popular springs are suffering from another possible public safety concern: bleach'.
Though the former seems to solve the latter, what is evident is the lack of management (be it government and / or volunteer). This is leading to a number of unwanted situations with health concerns being the most important. 
The bleach is also unwanted as it now affords the authorities with a real good excuse to take severe action which ultimately will mean less opportunity for soaking. 
However both situations are undesired, so in this case we just might have to have a little faith in government and hopefully the solution will only affect the less dedicated soaker ....

#nopooping #iceland  
Hrunulaug, Iceland: apparently common sense is on a wane; thus the need to heed the hordes? 
Also from the US, the situation surrounding the Skinnydipper hot springs is not faring well either. A latest posting on Facebook (Sep. 14):
'I started this page to save skinny dipper hot springs, we got a lot of likes (almost 10,000!) a lot of people stepped up to help and invested a lot of time and effort to "save skinny dippers" we met with the blm, spent countless hours trying to come up with solutions that remedied the concerns the blm had, remedies that could not appease them because ultimately they (the blm [= Bureau of Land Management]) wants skinny closed due to the fact there is a history of documented issues over the many years it has been open.
the real issue for the blm that is not being spoken about is that it is more profitable for the blm to close this beauty than to keep it open(business is business'.
So not good news

Better news from New Zealand: a geyser has sprung back to life (NZHerald, Sep. 9):
'A geyser which has been dormant for more than 35 years has caught
locals off guard after suddenly erupting'.
Though possibly they were not too surprised as the rewired geyser will hardly stand out:
'The Papakura Geyser is located at the Te Puia Te Whakarewarewa Thermal Valley in Rotorua, where there are more than 500 geothermal wonders'.
Having been there myself, there are no immediate soaking opportunities to be had nearby. 

Moving on.
Sometimes the sprucing up of local soaks can result in something quite attractive. Dezeen magazine (May 5) reports on  a recently constructed architectural gem at Mian Yang (Sichuan). Oddly the pictures are devoid of people. Apparently it's named Well Water Resort. Cheapest rooms start at US$ 125 / night ... 

Quirky news, from Rocketnews (Oct. 7): 
'In Oita Prefecture, this means presenting their world-famous hot springs with a synchronized swimming team in what can only be known as “synchronized bathing”'.
Also published on Youtube:


Taiwan seems to frown on the attire of a Chinese soaker (Rocket News Jul. 22):
'One such visitor, reported to be a tourist from mainland China, raised a few eyebrows recently. Obviously, you can only spend so long sitting in a hot spring before you need to get out and let your body cool down again, and this man decided to spend that time browsing for souvenirs.
Local media has criticized the breach of etiquette, even as Taitung shopkeepers say they’ve been seeing an increasing number of tourists strolling around in public in their bathing suits after exiting the hot springs. Residents have called such conduct disgraceful. Frankly, we’re not sure which surprises us more, that the man in the video seemingly didn’t feel enough embarrassment from the stares he was getting to put on a shirt, or that he didn’t feel enough pain from pebbles in the soles of his feet to put on some shoes'.

Asia Baffled? So it seems, as reported in the Bangkok Post (Jul. 28). But the baffling this time is done by the need of young tourists to create a lasting souvenir of a visit in the region with taking a picture ... naked. Hmmm ...:
'According to Maria Lombard of Northwestern University, the need for tourists to connect with locations "in a tangible way" and the ire that it draws are not new or unique.
Ms Lombard points out that tourists have been carving initials into landmarks and historical sites for ages.
"This desire to show that "I was here" is not new; just the mode for expressing it is."
Local officials are also puzzled why Western tourists who flaunt their bits at revered sites in Asia refrain from doing so in their own countries in front of landmarks like St Peter's Basilica.
"They don't seem to strip off much in the Notre Dame or Hagia Sofia or any other place I can think of," said Lawrence Osborne, a bestselling author who has written extensively about the clash of culture and identity in Southeast Asia.
"Modesty and restraint are still respected virtues in the East, so stripping naked at tourist sites that are sacred or highly visible is not only taboo in these countries but a "loss-of-face" for local officials."
Others see it as a fight against conservatism ...

Somewhere in the Balinese mountains
Angseri hot spring, source.

On towards more regional soaking news.
  • Indonesia
Possibly a tourist attraction in the offering according to Thinkeoenergy (Aug. 10) on Sulawesi near the town of Tomohon.
  • Malaysia
#hotspring #sohot #nature #saturday #steve #iphone6 #malaysia
Selayang hot spring, Selangor, source.
  • Philippines
Thinkgeoenergy (Sep. 8) draws attention to the Bacman geothermal power plant. Besides power generation it has a considerable environment conservation and protection project, well noted. 
From the original news source:
'Besides those we visited, the BacMan Geothermal Plant still boasts of other natural attractions that we weren’t able to check out due to time constraints. I would’ve loved to photograph the huge Golden-Crowned and Large Flying Fox bats that dot the treetops of the power plant, the Inang Maharang Mud Pool, the Naghaso Boiling Lake and the Parang Hot Spring'. 
An Experiance like no other . some peace and soul searching can be found here ! #latergram #mashtravels #chefmash #vacay #Philippines #vacay #travel #asiatrAvel #unwind #relax #greattimes #moments #airasia #manilla #hotsprings #relax #hiddengem #natural #hiddenvalley #waterfall
Hidden Valley somewhat warm springs, source.
  • Thailand
A very lengthy intro on Phra Ruang hot springs, (trip101, Sep. 9):
'Stay at Phra Ruang Hot Springs for a terrific addition to your Kamphaeng Phet [province] experience. And, if you listen to local legends, you may also take away more than you anticipated; supposedly, if you take some of the water home with you, it will bring you good fortunes and luck!'

bathing in the pai forest [herb] [leaves] #hotsprings #pai #thailand
Mae Hong Son province,  source.

  • Vietnam
Sometimes the description of a hot spring experience seems a bit out of here. An example of this comes from Vietnam's Yen Bai hot springs of Son Thinh and Son A. As published in Yen Bai (Oct. 6):
'In the recesses of the hot springs that Son Thinh, streams you view in Son A Tu Le and hot springs are all preferred medium.
At Tu Le, two hot spring baths beside cool stream and the shores are ripe rice fields. A very hot bath and a warm bath. The hot tub is more or less arbitrary per person. Whenever way down, after a day of hard work, the Thai girl to pull together down stream Tu Le, naturally shed her clothes and become the fairy between earth and sky.
At the end of the cold season: the mineral springs and wells steaming, sulfur-smelling H2S and with an average temperature of about 45 ° C, very good for health. Travelers come here also the bath, the boys are also allowed to share the bathroom, get playful harmony between nature, rest or relax in the hot water smelled of sulfur airlines between nature and details arcade arcade cold sky.
You can also dabble water, chatting with her, the girl pretty red cheeks, or the extent absolutely must keep their distance and not have bad behaviors, or they will be young men and punish law'.

Just a mud experience in Nha Trang (We live in the country, Jul. 19): 
'We opted to spend a rather luxurious day at the i-resort Nha Trang. We had a car and driver to take us round trip, and a private little villa, with our very own mud bath! The mud bath was Delicious- like chocolate soup!- and it immediately stopped all the skin irritations (I have Psoriasis) that I'd been experiencing! You actually float in the mud- but it isn't salty like the Dead Sea, and I have no idea what creates that kind of buoyancy! I loved it so much that before we left I bought two jars of the mud powder to take home- and I've been using it ever since! After our mud bath and showers, we had our massages, and enjoyed our private hot spring pools and the waterfall overlooking the mountains- the view was truly enchanting. We had lunch on the patio of our little villa, and I laid out by the pool for a bit... and all too soon it was time to leave...
Travelfish now has a section on mud baths in Nha Trang (Sep. 15). Not all is well:
'Thap Ba Hot Spring, six kilometres from downtown Nha Trang, is cheap and the most popular, which means it is usually crawling with people.
Baths are emptied after each round and there’s a big show to spray down the tubs, but if and how they clean the actual mud is a mystery.
the pools [of 100 Egg (Tram Trung)] and facilities are cleaner, tidier and better organised than Thap Ba. Our mud was pleasantly warm too, and felt velvety rather than cold and gritty like in Thap Ba'.
Treated ourselves to a mud bath because we can [pig] #danang #galina #mudbath #spa #theblondeadventure 
More mud mores catching on, now available in Danang, source

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