The Blue Lagoon: Icelands' Luxury Hot Springs

 Discover why swimming in a milky blue geothermal hot spring, surrounded by lava cliffs, is probably the most exotic thing you can do in Iceland! 


The Blue Lagoon is the reason we booked a trip to Iceland. Seriously, we’re not kidding. For some unknown reason, we had never considered visiting this little island country way up in the Atlantic ocean. Well, at least that was until we stumbled upon a picture of the Blue Lagoon on Pinterest. Two days later, we had booked our airline tickets to Iceland’s capital, Reykjavik, and a few days after that, we were soaking in the same hot geothermal waters we saw in that very picture.

And the trip was worth it! Our visit to the Blue Lagoon was an unforgettable experience; the bright blue waters and the amazing natural beauty surrounding the lagoon was absolutely breathtaking! Plus, since our visit was in the midst of the long Icelandic winter, the bitter cold chill that permeated the air made the idea of taking a dip into the naturally hot waters of the lagoon, seem like the perfect way to spend an afternoon!


Breathtaking Geothermal Hot Springs

The Lagoon is located just 45 minutes from Reykjavik, but feels like it’s a world away. During the ride you pass through some incredible scenery, with endless views of the ocean on one side, and mountains on the other, and once you arrive at the Blue Lagoon it only gets better. The lagoon itself is situated within an immense lava field, which, as we were there in January, was completely covered in snow. Looking around the strange landscape, we would have easily believed we were on another planet, as it was unlike anything we’d ever seen before. 

We spent an hour just walking around the grounds of the lagoon exploring the various hot springs, and marveling over the abundance of colors found around the water. Yes, the water itself was a milky blue, but after looking closer we noticed that there was also yellow, green, turquoise, and white all over the ground around hot springs which gives the whole area a psychedelic appearance! 

While the name the “Blue Lagoon” may lead you to think that the water is actually blue, it is actually just regular water. The blue color is actually caused by the sun reflecting off of the silica which is naturally found in the water. In addition to the silica, the hot spring is also rich in sulfur and other minerals, which the locals swear have natural healing powers.


A Touch of Luxury at the Blue Lagoon

To make the most of our day at the Blue Lagoon, we opted to book the “Luxury Experience”. This package includes all the important stuff like tickets, “skip the line” entrance privileges, access to an exclusive lounge, and a private changing room and shower to relax in before and after taking a dip in the waters.

Upon arriving at the Blue Lagoon, we were shown to our private room where we had all the amenities needed to get ready for the day, like; lotions, soap, conditioner, towels, sandals, and bathrobes. Although the room isn’t large, it is the perfect size for a couple. If you forget your bathing suit, don’t worry, they have great one-piece suites available in all sizes for women, and swim trunks for men. 

The luxury package has very limited availability each day, and only 12 people  can book it at a time, ensuring the lounge will never get overcrowded and that you’ll have your own private space to wind down. For us this was especially worth the money, as there are normally several hundred guests at the Lagoon at any one time.

This is a tourist hot spot, so expect long lines at the entrance. However, if you book a Luxury Experience, you’ll glide through the lines and feel more like you’re in a private spa.

Private changing room at the Blue Lagoon


Taking a Dip in the Blue Lagoon

After showering, we stepped out into the chilly Icelandic air, and made our way into the 5,000 square meter lagoon. As it is naturally heated to over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, it would be an understatement to say that the water was exhilarating! The water was so warm and tranquil that we literally slid right in. Plus the hot water mixing with the cold air created a thick foggy haze over the entire lagoon, which not only added an air of mystery to the experience, but also provided us with quite a bit of privacy. As members of the Exclusive Lounge we were also able to enter and exit the lagoon through a private entrance originating from inside a warm candle lit lounge, this way you never have to feel the ice cold chill of Icelandic weather if you don’t want to.

Anyone who has done a lot of swimming (and a lot of relaxing) knows that you can easily work up quite a thirst — so we decided to head over to the “swim up” bar and have a few drinks. Now, hanging out in a hot spring is good, but mix in a beer or two, and you’ve got perfection — Or, if you’re like me, maybe you’ll opt for a green smoothie instead! 

Drinks in hand we thought it be fun to give a few of the various face scrubs a try. The two that we picked were an algae face mask, and a silica mud mask, which are located at various points in the lagoon.  These masks are said to help smooth out your complexion and prevent aging, but for us it was actually more fun just to give it a try! When we finished with the masks we simply washed them off right in the water — how convenient! While i’m not sure if our completion was any better after having done it, I can say that I did get a good laugh watching Chris swim around with his face caked in mud!


Dining at the Blue Lagoon

After spending over two hours in the water, we decided call it a day. As the sun set over the Blue Lagoon we stepped out of the water and made our way back to our private changing area in order get ready for dinner at Lava, which is the signature restaurant of the Blue Lagoon.

The restaurant itself is stunning. Built directly into the side of a towering lava cliff overlooking the lagoon, Lava provided amazing views out over the hot spring. As evening was set in, and the snow began falling, the lights around the whole lagoon came on, and lit up the lagoon to an otherworldly neon blue color. 

Lava however, is not just about great views — it also has some really impressive food. We opted for their four course tasting menu with wine pairing. We didn’t know what food we were going to be served, but we had a feeling it would be really good as the head chef at the restaurant; Viktor Örn Andrésson, was the 2014 winner of the annual Nordic Chef of the Year competition. 

In all, diner at Lava was a perfect way to end our day at the Blue Lagoon. The food, wine, and service was really, really good. And the tasting menu is just 9,200 KRN (about $70 USD) per person, it is easily worth the price. 

If you’re interested in reading more about Lava Restaurant make sure to check out our review.


Is the Blue Lagoon Worth It?

Yes! Without a doubt, you should visit the Blue Lagoon if you head to Iceland. Sure, it's a huge tourist attraction, but there is a reason -- it's actually a lot of fun! Our trip to the Blue Lagoon was one of the highlights of our entire trip to Iceland. We heard it would be amazing, but we were not prepared for what we saw and experienced there. From the stunning natural beauty of the area surrounding the lagoon and the warm and inviting waters to the amazing food, the Blue Lagoon hit all of our buttons!

At 25,000 ISK (about $190 USD) per person, the comfort and privacy of the Luxury Experience package does come at a price, yet we think it's totally worth it. Chris and I both agree, that if we didn't have the Luxury Experiences, our stay would have been quite different. The soothing atmosphere of the lounge, the amenities, and the privacy is exactly what we were looking for and enabled us to truly appreciate the time we spent at the Blue Lagoon.

If you’re thinking about going to Iceland (you should), and if you want to have an unforgettable day soaking in a geothermal hot spring surrounded by beautiful scenery, then book a ticket to experience the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa — you won’t be disappointed! 


To visit the Blue Lagoon & see their packages make sure to visit their website: