Generous hot springs gush forth in this picturesque newly-conditioned thermal area, where it is still possible to use the old baths. The waters, with a temperature between 36° and 48°, are attributed as having beneficial properties against rheumatism and skin diseases.
This place in Porto Quintela, in the municipality of Bande, Orense, is one of the few in the world where you can take a free thermal bath with mineral-water with medicinal properties, day and night, in wells, pools and open baths under the sky.
In Roman times, during the construction of the Via XVIII between Braga and Astorga, various camp bases had to be established. This location turned out to be ideal for such a task, not only for its strategic location but, above all, for the discovery of the existence of thermal waters. This was of vital importance for the Roman civil and military population, since it was customary to take advantage of both their recreational and therapeutic properties.
Around 1985 the first two baths were recovered. The clues were obtained by archaeologists due to bubbles emerging from the bottom of the water (the heat that emerged from the hot springs immediately mixed with the cold of the reservoir). Since the Fenosa hydroelectric company had flooded the Limia valley in 1948 to build the As Conchas reservoir (Orense), what had been an old bathhouse – and, long before, Roman baths – had been lost in time.
From Roman times to the inauguration of the Las Conchas reservoir in 1949, they were always used as a spa. The foundations of buildings from the last use are still preserved.
The Os Baños de Bande thermal area has been the subject of significant improvement works in recent years, especially that carried out on the pools and the recovery of some of the old baths; the rise in the water level of the reservoir for several months limits the use of the area as a bathing area.