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For spa lovers, the best reason to visit the Great White North may be to explore its proliferation of Nordic spas. Scandinavian baths or Nordic spas are a time-honored tradition, especially in chillier climates. As the name suggests, this therapeutic tradition originated in Northern Europe, but Canada has jumped on the thermal bath bandwagon like you wouldn’t believe. You’ll definitely want to add this selection of incredible Nordic spas in Canada to your bucket list!
Nordic Spa Tradition
When visiting a Nordic Spa in Canada or beyond, spa-goers cycle through a circuit of hot, cold, and relaxation. In the first phase, you sweat it out in traditional saunas or steam baths. That’s followed by a plunge into a cold pool, said to increase circulation. Finally, you rest. This process is repeated as desired.
According to iOrtho The Orthopedic Institute, this aquatic therapy circuit has several proven health benefits. These include accelerated healing, reduced pain, improved mood, skin rejuvenation, immune system boost, and more.
1. Scandinave Spa Whistler
Whistler, British Columbia
You know Whistler as one of Canada’s top ski resorts, but not everyone who goes on a ski holiday wants to swoosh down the slopes all day. When your legs are burning and you can’t take any more vertical, head to Scandinave Spa Whistler to soothe sore muscles.
This Canadian spa includes a eucalyptus steam bath, cold baths, and dry saunas at this child-free spa. Choose between couples, deep tissue, and prenatal massages to add to your Nordic spa experience.
Situated on Lost Lake in the heart of nature, this amazing spa is surrounded by fragrant forests for exploring in winter or summer in Whistler. The scent of cedar alone will likely lower your stress levels.
2. Kananaskis Nordic Spa
Kananaskis County, Alberta
Most spas are all about the quiet. Not here. It’s not that Kananaskis Nordic Spa isn’t peaceful and relaxing. It is. But you won’t have anyone shushing you and there are no signs reminding you to be silent. You’re totally welcome to gab with your girlfriends in the pools or saunas.
The whole vibe is easygoing and well-suited for a stagette party. There is, however, a quiet zone with its own pool and steam room for those yearning for utter tranquility.
Opened in spring 2018, Kan-Nord is halfway between Calgary and Banff National Park. It’s in the mountains — right next door to a ski resort.
Being on the grounds of the Pomeroy Kananaskis Mountain Lodge means you can stay a few nights. Only adults are allowed spa entry but hotel guests can take advantage of their babysitting services or Creative Kids Center while you go for a soak.
3. Thermea by Nordik Spa-Nature
Thermea Winnipeg is situated smack dab within a capital city. You wouldn’t know it, though, since it’s perched on the edge of a massive park.
Begin in their aromatic steam sauna and forgo the outdoor pools on your first pass. Just outside this steam room is an exfoliation chamber brimming with infused salts to revitalize your skin.
If you’re not brave enough to hit their bracing PolaBër Pool and even colder IceBër Waterfall, then choose the warm and lovely Gëser Pool instead. In addition to outdoor hammocks, you’ll find alluring relaxation rooms. One resting room has thick mats luring you for a nap. Another has heated tiles and headphones.
Bonus: their on-site restaurant serves alcohol. The bad news is that kids must be older than 16 to visit. But maybe that’s a good thing?
4. Scandinave Spa Blue Mountain
The Blue Mountains, Ontario
A few hours’ drive outside of Toronto lies The Blue Mountains, a spot where Ontario city folk go skiing at the bewilderment of Western Canadians. They may be blue, but these aren’t really mountains. Hills is more like it.
But they do have something awesome going for them — the award-winning Scandinave Spa Blue Mountain. Situated in a serene natural forest, this Nordic spa is mere minutes from the charming town of Collingwood and Blue Mountain Ski Resort.
Enjoy Nordic waterfalls, hot baths, and cold plunges. Plus, you’ll find infrared Finnish saunas and a eucalyptus steam room. Registered massage therapists are on-site. The spa boasts an on-site bistro dishing up healthy local fare, too.
Although children aren’t allowed, it’s easy to score a sitter at one of the nearby Blue Mountain resorts.
5. Siberia Station Spa
Quebec City, Quebec
Most of these Nordic spas in Canada have a strict adults-only policy. Not so at Siberia Station Spa in Quebec!
Every Sunday morning and the mornings of school vacation (spring break, summer, and Christmas), potty-trained kids are welcome with their caregivers. Staff really goes the extra mile, too, providing children’s bathrobes, a kid’s menu at the on-site cafe, and even discounted youth spa service prices.
In addition to the many steam rooms, saunas, and pools, there’s a river on the edge of the grounds, with a swimming hole. In winter it’s more of a quick dip spot, but it’s got a platform and handrails.
Perhaps the biggest draw for both adults and children is their relaxation chambers. Some are shaped like igloos, while others contain individual chair hammocks for curling up to catch forty winks.
6. Le Nordik Spa-Nature
Le Nordik is Canada’s largest day spa and was one of the first Nordic spas to open in the country. While this spa is situated in Chelsea, Quebec, it’s only a short drive from the Canadian capital of Ottawa.
It’s got your typical thermal cycle but on a much larger scale. There are 10 outdoor baths, nine saunas, an infinity pool, and some pretty tricked-out relaxation areas.
The big deal here is their Kalla treatment, a massive saltwater floatation pool. It’s the second floating pool of its kind in the world. This is the spot to experience weightlessness inside a pool saturated with tons of Epsom salt. It’s similar to floating in the Dead Sea, but with zero mud and less hummus.
7. Balnea Spa et Réserve Thermale
Balnea is very much a destination spa, set in the heart of Quebec’s Eastern Townships. In addition to all the outdoor spaces with (non-heated!) pools, expect steams, saunas, and legit spa treatments. Extend your day trip by staying the night nearby at the laidback Beatnik Hotel or the romantic Pleasant Hôtel & Café.
You can get a facial, mani-pedi, scrub, wrap, and yes, massage, too. They also offer yoga classes, a boot camp in the woods, plus gourmet dining.
Kids over 14 are welcome at the gorgeous Balnea Spa. Those under 16 wanting a massage must have a female masseuse and be accompanied by an adult caregiver in a duo treatment.
8. USVA Nordik Spa
Moncton, New Brunswick
Opened in 2018 in New Brunswick, this was the first Nordic spa in Atlantic Canada. Situated right beside Magnetic Hill Winery, you can’t beat the location. USVA Nordik Spa is also less than a 5-minute drive from Moncton’s top attractions including Magic Mountain and Magnetic Hill.
This is probably one of the smallest Nordic spas you’ll come across, but it ticks all the right boxes. Expect three saunas, an outdoor heated pool, an outdoor cold plunge pool, and both indoor and outdoor areas for the relaxation phase.
Choose to warm up in the heated indoor relaxation room or with a massage in one of six treatment rooms. Meanwhile, outdoors there are suspended hammock chairs and fire pits to gather around.
Kids between ages 8 and 15 may join parents at USVA Nordik Spa on select dates. Check their Instagram for details.
9. Mysa Nordic Spa and Resort
Saint Peter’s Bay, Prince Edward Island
The first Nordic spa on Prince Edward Island, Mysa is the perfect place for a day of wellness experiences or a multi-day spa retreat. Open year-round, this thermal spa provides an adult-only atmosphere to unwind among 18 acres of nature.
Mysa means “cozy” in Swedish, and that’s the vibe you’ll find here. Choose from two different saunas: Finnish or barrel. You can also heat things up with a thermal bath or eucalyptus steam bath. Then chill out with a Nordic bath, cold plunge pool, cool shower, or by breathing in the cool breeze from St. Peter’s Bay. Relax outdoors in front of a roaring wood fireplace, in the indoor relaxation room, or with a guided meditation at Mysa Nordic Spa & Resort.
10. Bota Bota Spa Sur L’Eau
Built from a repurposed ferry boat, Bota Bota Spa provides a unique experience aboard a floating thermal spa. Take in breathtaking city views of Montreal while soaking up the health benefits of immersive water therapy at Bota Bota Spa.
Experience a dry sauna, a cold plunge in the Saint Lawrence River, and hot baths. Enhance your wellness experience with a facial, massage, or body treatment. Bota Bota’s adjacent land-based Gardens include outdoor hot tubs, a fireplace, an outdoor pool, and lounge chairs for lazing.
Side note: If you think there seem to be more Nordic spas in Quebec than in other Canadian provinces, you’d be right. The Quebecois are French in descent after all, which means they know how to appreciate the good things in life.
Canadian Nordic Spa Tips
It doesn’t really matter which Canadian Nordic spa you choose from this list. All will relax and refresh your mind and body. Just be sure to arrive early in the morning, especially if you haven’t made a reservation for a spa service. During the holidays and on many weekends, it’s not uncommon for Nordic spas in Canada to reach their full capacity before noon. Most of all, give yourself plenty of time to unwind. You deserve it!
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Have you experienced Nordic spas in Canada or elsewhere? Would you like to? Let us know in the comments below!
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