Last November I traveled to Iceland for a week. I deliberately targeted the winter season so that I can visit the ice caves. Before going, I contemplated going to the Blue Lagoon in the winter. I never really spent time in any form of hot spring, so I didn’t know what it would be like in freezing weather.
Well I did it anyways, and I would do it again in a heart beat. Just imagine the thought of peeling off your winter jacket, stripping down to your swim wear and running in below freezing weather until your toes reach the warm waters. Here’s my experience, as well as some tips for those who plan to go to the Blue Lagoon some day.
Whether you have a layover in Iceland, or if you’re traveling throughout Iceland, the Blue Lagoon is worth a visit. It is Iceland’s most popular attraction, located in Grindavík in a lava field. This gem is not a natural wonder, but actually man-made. A near by geothermal power plant outputs natural mineral-rich from underground geological layers, which gets fed into the lagoon.
The water is incredibly warm, rich in minerals such as sulphur and silica, which is responsible for its milky blue shade, which makes this spa so beautiful and serene. It is located in between the Keflavík International Airport and Reykjavik so it is a place most people visit on their way to or from the airport.
I landed at the airport at 7:45 am on a November morning. It was very much dark with short days and all during that time of year, so it felt like night, a very cold night. And considering back home was indeed night time, I worried about adjusting to my new environment.
When I arrived, I was directed to the luggage locker where I was able to leave safely my belongings. You’ll receive a receipt for which you’ll pay (about $3.00 USD) when you checkout of the lagoon. Don’t forget to pay. They’ll stamp your receipt, which will serve as proof of payment.
After dropping off my bags, I entered into the lobby of the Blue Lagoon and waited in line assigned to the Premium Package, which was the package that I booked. This included the following:
- Entrance to Blue Lagoon
- Silica Mud Mask
- Use of Bathrobe
- Use of Towel
- 1st drink of your choice
- Algae Mask
- Table reservation at LAVA Restaurant
- Sparkling wine at LAVA Restaurant
I also received a bracelet which served as my locker key and tab to charge purchases made while at the Blue Lagoon, including additional mud masks, drinks and dining. It serves as proof for any purchase you make or don’t make, therefore losing it can incur hefty fees.
I didn’t bother using my reservation at the restaurant. I didn’t have an appetite for a fancy expensive meal, so if you’ve eating at the LAVA restaurant, I would love for you to share you experience in the comments below.
The use of the bathrobe was very much overrated. The point of the bathrobe is to wear it when you step out of the water, so you can either hang it up right at the entrance to the lagoon, or by the locker room. The problem is that there’s nothing stopping someone else from losing or misplacing theirs and stealing yours.
As I exited the doors to make my way to the lagoon, I had to brace myself for a second. Mind you, it was winter time, and I was going for a swim in my bathing suit in -2 Celsius (28 Fahrenheit) weather. Moments earlier I was freezing in my winter jacket and the thought of getting out there in nothing but swim wear was nothing short of crazy and exhilarating.
Armed with my robe and sandals, which were included in my package, I ran as quickly as I can to where people hung their robes. It really wasn’t that far from the door, but when it is -2 C, it feels like a miles away. Of course, when I got there, I had to spend a minute or two finding a free hanger to hang my robe. Once I found one, I ran as fast as I can, and let me tell you, the minute my toe touched the water and the rest of my body melted into the milky blue lagoon, it felt like none other. It was so warm, I forgot how cold outside really was.
Take a look at a quick video below of my experience in the Blue Lagoon and make sure it is unmuted. It’s as wonderful as it looks.
Tips for your visit:
- Book your shuttle and entry ticket to the Blue Lagoon in advance.
- Since it’s on the way to and from the airport, go on the first or last day of your stay. I would even recommend making it your first stop, which will allow your bathing suit to dry in your hotel, instead of packing wet swimwear onto the plane.
- Carry everything you’ll need at the Blue Lagoon, such as your bathing suit, in your carryon. It’ll be a hassle to open your luggage and retrieve everything on the spot. Having them ready and available on you will make it very easy to hand off your bags at the luggage locker.
- If you don’t want to brave the extreme cold, while in nothing but your bathing suit on your way to the lagoon, there’s a way to enter the water from inside and swim out the door, so you stay warm the whole time. This is a much better option in the winter time, as opposed to exiting into the harsh weathers running like a chicken until you reach the warmth of the water.
- Before entering, you are required to shower without your bathing suit on. There are stalls with swing doors for privacy. This means that the doors can literally swing open since there are no locks.
- Drench your hair in the conditioner that they provide and avoid getting your hair in the water. It’ll cause damage for weeks. The silica in the water is bad for your hair, but awesome for your skin.
- Don’t forget to drink water periodically so that you don’t get dehydrated.
Visit the Blue Lagoon website to book your stay, learn more about services, and get additional tips.
Have you been to this lagoon, or any others in Iceland? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below.