At 582 metres above sea level, San Casciano dei Bagni is a small town in the province of Siena with just 2000 inhabitants. The surrounding territory, which abounds in hills and woods – surrounded by Monte Cetona, Monte Amiata and Monte Radicofani – includes Celle sul Rigo and Palazzone.
The thermal baths of San Casciano have been known since antiquity, first by the Etruscans and later by the Romans. Archaeological digs have in fact unearthed abundant treasures from this period, such as the carved stone that refers to Triaria, wife of Emperor Vitellius. Under Rome the baths were well known with the name of Fontes Clusinae and the therapeutic properties of the waters are mentioned in works by the great poet Virgil.
The San Casciano dei Bagni basin extends for roughly 300 hectares and the waters are classified as hypo-thermal, sulphate, calcite and magnesiate. The waters emerge from 42 springs at a temperature of roughly 40°C in a myriad of small waterfalls that attract many tourists.
The San Casciano town council runs a small spa centre here in partnership with Italterme, the firm that also manages the baths of Saturnia. There are plans to build other spa centres and new hotels, with a view to increasing the town’s reception capacity and make correct use of all the water springs whilst not ruining the natural environment.
The waters of San Casciano are particularly suited for mud therapy, massages and inhalations. Mud therapy is used for skin treatments, beauty treatments and vaginal irrigations. Mud balenotherapy is employed for curing rheumatic illnesses, while the inhalations available at the spa are exceptional in the treatment of respiratory pathologies such as rhinitis, sinusitis, pharyngitis, adenoiditis, tonsillitis, laryngitis, chronic bronchitis and tracheo-bronchitis.
San Casciano dei Bagni also boasts a number of interesting buildings and monuments. The Church of became the seat of the Confraternity of Sant’Antonio in 1500 and the town’s oldest sight is a 5th century AD pagan temple. In Piazza Matteotti there is a castle known as the Castello Turrito, built in 1911 and surrounded by a large garden. Right in the middle of town is the Church of the Santissima Concezione, founded by the Capuchins in 1579. Of the public buildings of San Casciano, perhaps the most eye-catching is Palazzo Lombardi, with its tower.