Regular men visitors of Rudas Spa (historical Turkish spa of Budapest) are outraged because they can only enjoy “apron bathing” (traditionally naked) until 12:45 on Fridays – this particular programme for men used to be in the afternoon on Fridays. After the end of the programme, guests have to take on their swimming suits and coed system activates. The reasons for the decision are that the number of visitors is higher than ever and public sex has gone out of control. 

One of the regular guests of the spa started an online petition, to restore the former routine – reported. According to the frequenter, the programme used to be an excellent opportunity for men to relax after tiring weekdays, to make friends, have discussions etc. By giving away this valuable time to tourists, the spa culture will lose a lot. The friendly exchange of views will be altered with uncomprehending emptiness. Other guests created a Facebook group to protest against the undiscussed measure of the spa.

But why is it such a big deal to relax in a swimming suit? As the petition says:

“obviously it is possible to have rest in swimming suits, but those who are used to the apron bathing, are not happy with wearing and carrying wet unhygienic swimming suits at all.”

According to Rudas Spa, men can enjoy the apron bathing on Thursdays from 6 am till 8 pm, and women can do the same on Tuesdays. So, what can be the real reason for the change? 

“We made this decision because of the intense growth of tourism and also because public sex has gone out of control. Even the reinforced security staff was unable to prevent these obscene scenes against public morality. The bigger number of security guards would disturb the guests’ relaxation.”

associate of Rudas Spa said. For a long time, there has been a growing need for more coed days because the spa has been frequently visited on Fridays. Besides, for other spas of Budapest (Széchenyi, Gellért, Király etc.), coeducational bathing has brought significantly large profit. 

Rudas Gyógyfürdő
Pool of Rudas Spa

One of the dissatisfied frequenters of the spa says:

“I have been coming to this spa for 25 years regularly. It has been such a f* good opportunity for 300 people to have rest at the beginning of the weekend. But now, tourists can come so we can f* off.”

According to Rudas, it would be more profitable to go fully coeducational, but as the only functioning historical Turkish spa of the country, they will keep preserving traditions. 

The writer of the petition says that associates of the spa did not consult with the regular visitors at all; on the other hand, directorate of Rudas says that everyone has been informed accordingly. Regular visitors have received messages specially addressed to them by name, and changes have been published on the website of the spa for more than a month. Taking their needs into consideration, visitors can attend apron bathing in the morning on Fridays.  

Rudas spa
Ruda Spa at sunset

The petition writer thinks that this is a significant loss for the unique Hungarian spa culture. Guests could enjoy bathing the same way for centuries in Rudas. He has encountered the only similarly high bath culture in Japan, and as he says, even in Turkey, there are way fewer people visiting spas. This is what is getting lost right now as we watch. 

You can read about the Hungarian spa of 2019 here, and you can also learn about the cheapest Hungarian resorts and water parks here.



1 comment
  1. Rudas needs to keep the traditional bathing as much as possible. I would suggest banning swimsuits on single sex days forcing anyone attending on those days to experience the traditional process. If someone wants the modern process then the modern wellness areas cater for this or attend on a weekend. As a foreigner I arrived early on a Friday to experience the traditional process. Do not lose this for future visitors.

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