The salt that has been produced in the Cervia area since time immemorial is less bitter than standard kitchen salt and is described as being “sweet” in taste. The salt pans are an important landmark in the area’s local history and culture, as well as being a precious source of water and mud, brimming with healing properties.
First opened in the 1970s, the Terme di Cervia spa makes good use of these extraordinary health properties in a series of treatments that use the sodium chloride, bromide and iodide-rich waters, in a vast facility surrounded by lush-green pine forest.
The proximity of the Cervia spa to the Adriatic Sea and the salt pans make it the perfect destination for those seeking to combine spa pampering with the opportunity to discover all the natural and cultural wonders in the area.
‘Acqua Madre’ thermal water and the thermal pools
The spa treatments at the Cervia facility use the sodium chloride, bromide and iodide-rich water known as ‘Acqua Madre’, which is extracted directly from the salt pan basins. This means that the water has a high content of dissolved salt and other minerals including selenium, magnesium and potassium. ‘Acqua Madre’ also contains Dunaliella salina algae which helps to protect the skin from the sun's rays owing to it being high in beta-carotene.
Balneotherapy therefore provides a range of benefits for the body, specifically improving joint mobility and reactivating blood circulation. Soaking in this thermal water can also boost the immune system, as the hypertonic nature of the water (owing to the high salt content) makes it anti-septic.
To reap the maximum benefits from the water’s properties, the Terme di Cervia provides guests with three thermal pools: one large pool, measuring 20 metres long; a deeper pool (1.70 m) for floating; and lastly a hypertonic ‘Acqua Madre’ pool, with a sodium and chloride content that is five times higher than seawater and even higher than the Dead Sea.
In addition to the indoor pools, the facility also has an outdoor pool with massaging water jets and views out over the pine forest, a solarium, a rehabilitation pool and a Kneipp therapy system.
Muds and other treatments
Once you have experienced the water’s effects on the body, it’s now time to try the black mud, which also comes from the salt basins of Cervia's salt pans. Working for long hours with their feet immersed in salty mud, salt collectors were the first to experience the healing power of this mud on their skin; the perfect organic substance to ease skin disorders, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and rheumatism.
The treatments available include detoxifying muds, the salt scrub massage, the Dunaliella salina algae ritual to help combat skin ageing, and the hydrating and toning salicornia ritual.