Between the little pueblo of Dolores Hidalgo and the town of San Miguel de Allende, in the Mexican state of Guanajuato, is an area renowned for its steamy hot mineral springs. At the 10 kilometers mark along the highway stretching between the towns, you’ll find the La Gruta Spa. Walking through the gated entrance is like stepping through the looking-glass; the welcoming façade ushers you from apparent wilderness to a wonderland of self-indulgence. Floral-colored birds accentuate the tropical gardens, making the spas aesthetically, as well as physically, pleasing. Rent a locker for your belongings (the small refundable fee is a recommended investment) and head to the changing room. Don’t forget your bathing suit!
Once changed, make your way to one of the three pools into which the waters of a thermal spring have been channelled. Each varies in size and temperature—the depth of the pool determines the water temperature—though the level of enjoyment is invariably the same. Literally translated, La Gruta means “the Grotto,” and in San Miguel de Allende this name epitomizes rest and relaxation. The hottest water is in the grotto, entered through a long rock tunnel and lit by a single shaft of sunlight. Once inside, you can take your turn at a shoulder massage from the hot water spout gushing out of the ceiling. Besides relaxing, a popular activity is hopping from one pool to another. The spa also has a restaurant, which is a bit pricey but convenient, as it offers service to the pool areas. A ten minute taxi ride from the spa will drop you off in the stunning colonial town of San Miguel de Allende.
Among the clean-swept streets and exquisite architecture you’ll also find good shopping, great restaurants and popular hotels. Shop ‘till you drop, and then soak in the healthy waters of La Gruta. It is an experience you won’t want to miss.