It's been one of our dreams to visit an outdoor spring ever since our aborted trip to Japan, following the earthquake and tsunami of last year (RIP to those who were lost). It was during a recent trip to China that we lept at the chance to visit one.
We booked through a local travel agent for the princely sum of £14 for the return coach journey and entry to Bishuiwan.
We arrived at the pick up point nice and early and set off to the hot spring on a, not very modern, coach, which left me a little woozy. Nevermind, because once we got there we were essentially treated like royalty.
We were led to the changing areas (ladies in one, gents in the other), where you were given a locker (with electronic key), changed into flipflops and then ushered into the lounge area, where we were plied with drinks (tea, water, coffee, soft drinks, that kind of thing), prepared fruit (melon, oranges, tomatoes, guava, etc.). Afterwards, you were free to go back into the changing areas and change into your swim wear.
Before heading to the outdoor hot springs, we took in a herbal sauna. Having never been in a sauna before I had to will myself to stop from passing out from the heat. However, even that was great. We then headed to outside, it was cold and drizzling, but once we jumped into our first hot spring, it was nothing less than awesome.
The place is littered with springs of different types. There was a coffee pool, a tea pool, a milk pool was rumoured to be a round but was closed for cleaning, jet pools, massage pools, pools with those fish which peck at your feet, there was a twin pool called 'fire and ice' - one pool was 40 degrees, the other freezing. There were hot stone beds, a swimming pool, there's even a conference pool where, erm, you can hold internet and face to face meetings (yeah, I KNOW!!!).
Also, with your ticket you get a meal voucher, okay the meal wasn't especially great, in fact, for me it was poor, but my family lapped it up, and for £14 for the day you can't really complain. Drinks were free and staff often came up to you with trays of water to keep you hydrated or with fresh towels. I even saw staff run out to people with umbrellas to escort people to and from buildings or between pools...
There was even a show during the day - singing and dancing and some acrobatics - nothing spectacular, but a very nice touch indeed. I can't stress how helpful staff were - though it will probably pay if you have a mandarin speaker with you.
All in all, a fantastic day out and totally recommended.
*Note: The place is also attached to a hotel, but we didn't stay there, but by all accounts staff and facilities there as just as good as the hot spring section.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.