The Blue Lagoon Geo-Thermal Spa, Iceland

By alison - December 5, 2011 (Updated: January 16, 2015)

This entry is part 2 of 4 in the series Exploring Iceland.
The Blue Lagoon Geo-Thermal Spa, Iceland

The Blue Lagoon Geo-Thermal Spa, Iceland

A few weeks ago, we told you about our favourite air-port layover ever, The Blue Lagoon, geo-thermal spa, in Iceland. Today, we want to give you a peek inside the spa, and tell you why you can’t miss this travel destination, in Iceland.

Icelanders love their geo-thermal waters. And so they should – 87% of their buildings are heated by this natural resource, with plans to make Iceland 100% fossil-fuel free in the near future.

While hot water powers the nation, it also powers the people. Icelanders spend a large percent of their leisure time soaking in the many geo-thermal pools dotted around the country.  If you visit Reykjavik, you should definitely check out some of the local pools, for an authentic taste of Icelandic bathing. But don’t rule out the Blue Lagoon, as a great way to spend the day.

It’s true; you’ll find way more tourists at the Blue Lagoon, than locals. One of the main reasons for this is the ease with which you can visit, while transiting through Keflavik airport. But don’t let the other tourists scare you off. After all 400,000 visitors a year can’t be wrong. The Blue Lagoon is legendary in spa circles for good reason.

First of all, the facilities are incredibly clean and well maintained. The change-rooms are huge, with plenty of space to store your belongings. Products from The Blue Lagoon’s own line are available in the showers and it is possible to rent towels, bathrobes and even bathing suits, if you don’t have your own.

There is a large and airy cafeteria, on site.  While you enjoy a drink or snack, you can watch the activity in the thermal pools.  Or you can dine in the LAVA Restaurant, where local ingredients are featured in fine dining menus.

LAVA Restaurant, Blue Lagoon

LAVA Restaurant, Blue Lagoon
Lava field around the Blue Lagoon

From the roof-terrace, you can see the lava field around the Blue Lagoon

For me though, the Blue Lagoon is all about the water. First, let me say, it is really that blue. The colour is the first thing you notice, when you arrive.

Blue Lagoon, Iceland

The clear blue water in front of the Blue Lagoon spa

Second, there is very little smell. I had expected it to be rather sulphurous but that wasn’t the case.

The water averages 37–39 °C (98–102 °F), which feels perfect compared to the brisk outside air. The bottom of the pool is sandy in places and smooth lava, in others. As you float around the pools, there is plenty of room to escape the other bathers, as the irregularly shaped lava formations have plenty of nooks and crannies.

Bird's Eye View of the Blue Lagoon

Bird’s Eye View of the Blue Lagoon

The six million litres of water are incredibly clean. Water is renewed every 40 hours and bacteria can’t thrive in the silica and sulphur rich water.

Speaking of silica, wooden boxes filled with the Blue Lagoon’s silica mud are scattered around the pool-side. Slathering this on your skin and letting it dry, is supposed to exfoliate and rejuvenate your skin.  Our skin did feel softer after the process, even if we felt a bit silly. (If you want to see proof of our silliness, make sure you check out Andrew’s video from The Blue Lagoon)

If floating around in the pool isn’t enough to keep you entertained, you can also spend time in the sauna, steam bath, waterfall, relaxation area or visit the swim-up bar. You can also get in-water massages and other treatments.

For us, visiting the Blue Lagoon was one of the highlights of our trip to Iceland. It helped us conquer our trans-Atlantic jet-lag and rejuvenate after a stressful summer. We can’t wait to return.

Want more on Iceland? Later this week we’ll be sending out our next issue of the CheeseWeb Escapes E-zine. This month we’re featuring Reykjavik, Iceland, so make sure you’re on the mailing list.

Read more from



Big Cheese at CheeseWeb
Alison Cornford-Matheson is a Canadian freelance writer and travel photographer and the founder of She is the author of The Foodie Guide to Brussels: Local Tips for Restaurants, Shops, Hotels, and Activities. Alison landed in Belgium in 2005 and, over the years, has become passionate about slow and sustainable travel, in Europe and beyond. She loves to discover hidden gems - be they museums, shops, restaurants, castles, gardens or landscapes, and share them through her words and photos. She has visited 45 countries and is currently slow travelling through North America in an RV, with her husband, Andrew, and two well-travelled cats. You can also follow her work on Google+
One of my biggest goals in coming back to my home province was to learn as much as I could about our First... - 7 days ago
Go top