The chemka hot springs is a natural spring in the Caucasus Mountains near the village of Kudepashk, Azerbaijan. It is located in an isolated and untouched area. Visitors can walk through a peaceful forest to reach it, only two miles away from the village. The water comes up through layers of stone and granite, where it meets with carbonic acid vapors that give off heat to create hot springs out at its outskirts and form pools where people can bathe.
The water is in a pristine state. The temperature of the water averages 105 degrees Fahrenheit and the pH level is 8.9. It is not recommended for people with weak immune systems or open wounds, as the microbes in the water can cause diarrhea, vomiting, high fever and rashes. At times when there are too many visitors in one day, authorities close off access to it.
There are a few essential rules to follow if one visits the springs:
If you are visiting in a group, wear swimsuits. Clothing is not recommended as it takes longer to dry and it is very cold near the water. Bathing suits or undergarments are recommended for women visitors, as the water is deep and reaching the bottom may be difficult for them. Do not drink from the water. Although safe to bathe in, possible consequences of drinking from it were not studied.
If you follow these rules, you can visit the springs and walk along the shore. Before making a visit, it is best to check the state of access at the springs with locals or officials.
Local villagers believe that because the water of Chemka is healing, it should be preserved from human activity. Access to it is restricted during certain seasons as well.”
The hot springs have become an important tourist attraction for Azerbaijan. Every year about 100 thousand people visit them. Despite the fact that access is restricted during certain times of the year, some tourists visit it illegally.