Tired of traffic jams in the morning - jobs that needed to be done yesterday - kids with never ending colds - not meeting that 10,000-step goal - and bad cholesterol levels that are on the up and up? Seems like someone needs to recharge their batteries! If so, we've got a unique escape plan for you: a trip to Lithuania!
Beer SPA procedures
With more and more travellers seeking opportunities to improve their well-being and health, finding inner peace, and switching to a higher quality of lifestyle, wellness tourism is on the rise globally.
And Lithuania is no exception. In fact, it has long spa traditions and a thriving sector already in place that is primed and ready to revive, purify and energise you.. Local SPA procedures use local products and ancient Lithuanian traditions to ensure you receive a truly authentic experiences and a sense of well-being.
For example, have you ever heard of taking a milk bath? Besides the more traditional offers at various local SPA centres, you can also try a modern take on Cleopatra's recipe for preserving what's left of your youth: a bath with wild berries and goats' milk which moistens the skin effectively and reduces fatigue.
At a rural tourism homestead in northern Lithuania, meanwhile, you can enjoy an open-air bath with milk, medicinal herbs, or... beer and hop blossoms! Yes! It's said that this beer procedure warms and cherishes the skin, nurturing it with minerals, easing your blood pressure and elevating your spirits.
If you've already tried and are no longer surprised by therapeutic mud or mineral-water baths, which the Lithuanian resorts of Druskininkai and Birštonas are justifiably famous for, why not go for an amber bath? Special amber water, hydro massage and rubbing yourself with bags filled with pieces of amber strengthens your immune system, improves the digestion and stimulates the release of happiness hormones.
You'll find that your little ones are taken care of at the resorts too. They can enjoy an apple bath, a strawberry bath or a camomile bath. It's said that even the most capricious kids and monsters under the bed cannot resist.
The therapeutic benefits of Baltic amber are no mere legend; they have been scientifically proven. That's why amber is used not only for making jewellery in Lithuania but for a variety of SPA procedures too.
Even in the very centre of the capital Vilnius, you can order a massage on an amber mattress with amber oil, black amber, amber beads and amber incense. In other parts of Lithuania, you can experience a body scrub with amber dust, a body wrap with amber powder and honey, blue amber therapy for your hands and feet, and even amber aromatherapy.
Amber has quite rightly taken a dominant role in Lithuanian SPA processes. Baltic amber contains 3% to 8% of amber acid, which has clear health benefits as it stimulates metabolic processes, reduces inflammation, improves blood flow, reduces stress and fills you with energy.
What's more, you can even give amber a taste. After a relaxing amber massage you will find yourself being offered to take part in an amber tea ceremony, or you might even have the opportunity to try the dessert called The Amber Jewel, that's an inspired combination of amber and honey.
Or maybe it's time to try the unique, patented Amber and Mineral Therapy Centre in Vilnius with its amber interior? Or the biggest amber sauna in the world near the seaside resort of Palanga, made with three tonnes of Baltic amber?
Birch rods from the freezer and milk cubes
Saunas deserve a separate mention in Lithuania, as every sauna enthusiast has their own philosophy. Some offer a sacred sauna experience with scrubbing, aromatherapy and tea, while others can rub you down with salt and amber powder, make you a clay mask, and massage you with honey and hemp oil in a sauna. But it doesn't stop there, as there other keen sauna specialists will bring whey cubes with cucumbers, and in winter they'll wrap you in a sweet milk blanket.
In winter, some sauna enthusiasts use fresh birch rods, which are kept in the freezer so that even when the snow falls you'll be able to enjoy the fresh aromas of birch, oak, lime tree or chestnut.
And what greater pleasure is there than jumping into a lake after a sauna? And it's not only in the majority of rural tourism homesteads that you can do this. If you're with a larger group you can visit Ilzenbergas Manor with its reconstructed 19th century sauna, which is considered to be the biggest of its kind in the Baltic states accommodating up to 25 people.
In the resorts, in the SPA centres after a sauna, you can enjoy not only traditional swimming pools but also mineral-water swimming pools; and in Palanga you can even take a dip in a Lithuania-shaped swimming pool with heated water from the Baltic Sea!
Burdock, sand and honey for wellness
A lot of people draw their strength from nature, and with this idea front and centre, Lithuanians have adapted nature into their SPA procedures. They offer massages with oak branches, body scrubs with oak-bark scrubs, ground chestnuts, sand, hemp, ash berries, cranberry puree and poppy seeds. After wrapping you in burdock, dandelions or sea buckthorn, they prepare masks with parsley, plantago, nettle and apple, use buckwheat or salt therapy, and also offer special dolphin, horse even bee therapy.
In Lithuania, you can learn a few recipes that will help improve your quality of sleep. Trying one of them will take only a few minutes, as that's as long as you'll be able to stand in the 120 degrees Celsius heat! Cryotherapy helps you recover from traumas, strengthens your immune system, reduces anxiety – and makes you look younger too.
Fancy spending some time in a cloud?. even if it's not exactly a real one. Colours, light, sound and motion are used in a special device to create a deep relaxation effect. Twenty minutes in this device is equal to two hours of deep sleep. You can find this innovation near the pretty village of Trakai.
From spring next year, you'll be able to visit the first Sleep SPA in Eastern Europe located in the resort of Druskininkai. There, you'll find a number of innovative therapies aimed at improving sleep, as well as the physical, emotional and spiritual well-being of every guest.