Getting Steamy at Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Jessica Peterson

BLUE LAGOON, ICELAND

Pretty much the most touristy thing you can do in Iceland, Blue Lagoon is still a must-experience stop. The lagoon is tucked into a part of town that looks positively post-Apocalyptic with piles of black volcanic rubble. The drive out there is a bit spooky, but you didn’t come to Iceland to see anything banal, did you?

The lagoon is bit pricey at over $50 per person, but you can stay all day to soak up the geothermal waters and slather on white clay that makes you look like you belong to an African tribe. As you steam in the baby blue pools, you’ll feel like a red-faced snow monkey. A swim-up bar gives the place more of a pub vibe than a spa feel, but you can also get a massage right there in the lagoon. The white table-clothed restaurant is pricey with beautifully composed, but a bland Icelandic delicacies. Service was friendly but incredibly slow.

The lagoon has showers, changing rooms, a cafe, restaurant, and even a hotel with renovations in progress. The mechanical thud of construction echoing in the near distance only made the scene more weird. We couldn’t help feeling like we were in Logan’s Run, being ceremoniously prepared for Carousel.

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Jessica Peterson
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Jessica Peterson

Jessica Peterson is a travel filmmaker, photographer, and journalist. She released her first documentary film about indigenous culture on Guam in 2016, after having lived nearly 7 years on the Pacific island. Jessica is currently on the Great American Roadtrip in her Airstream trailer.
Jessica Peterson
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  • Looks amazing. Would really love to go here one day

    Leonie ♥ Lo On The Go

  • Adelaide

    Even though it’s a tad overpriced and is ridiculously touristy… it’s a definite must!
    I went there in the middle of winter and saw the sun rise over the mountains at 11am.
    It was so glorious but the run from inside to the lagoon in your bikini is rather difficult!
    http://aworldlyaddiction.com/

    • Hi Adelaide. What an experience to be there middle of winter! Isn’t Iceland magical?

  • What’s the best time of year to visit?

    • We went in May and it was cold, icy, windy and gorgeous! Didn’t see the Northern Lights though. I like to travel in shoulder seasons to avoid throngs of tourists, but I’d definitely check out Iceland in the winter months to see the Northern Lights. Just note that some roads and sights are closed in winter.

      • Looks like I’ll have to take a look then! 😉

  • USD50?? Whoa! I didn’t know it was that expensive. But as you’ve said, even if it’s very touristic (and expensive) I think it’s all worth it. I’m just not sure about the swim up bar that they have. I’d probably like it better if it was a relaxing experience without any bar whatsoever around me. But what do I know? Maybe I’d actually like it! :p

    • Yeah, some people are there to relax and some are there to socialize, but it wasn’t rowdy or anything.

  • Crazy Dutch Abroad

    The blue lagoon in Iceland is high on my list! Thank you very much for sharing the insights, for that price I would pamper myself the whole day in the steamy lagoon. The food looks well-balanced, too bad the service was slow.

    • You can stay all day or until you turn into a raisin. That’s the nice thing about it.

      • Crazy Dutch Abroad

        Great, love the raisin expression! 🙂

  • Carly Heyward

    Oooh, you made me so jelly! I went to Iceland in December, but I didn’t realize I’d have to book the Blue Lagoon in advance! About 1.5 weeks out and it was all booked up!!

    • Oh wow. I went in May and didn’t have reservations, but it was full of tourists, even then.

  • Now the first line is interesting! I’m generally someone who avoids doing touristy things and I’ve seen so many blogposts about the Blue Lagoon. Thanks for this affirmation that though it touristy, its a must visit place. The food looks delicious.

    • Sometimes tourist spots live up to the hype, but there are a few people who don’t enjoy this sort of thing.

  • I know you mentioned it being pricey, but that food looks absolutely delicious!! $50 is super steep for the blue lagoon, but I suppose as its one of the “must dos” in the country they can get away with charging whatever they like. I for one would happily pay up – I’d love to go there one day!

  • Sindhu Murthy

    I haven’t been a great fan of blue lagoon as it is quite expensive and always full of tourists. But I love the way you have lucidly described the experience of spending time in the lagoon. For me, the picture of the food looks more interesting. Like a piece of art! Btw, I really liked the feature image of this post.

  • Sonia Sahni

    We went here three years ago and spent about 3 hours in the lagoon. We had a couple of beers and splashed all around the place…it was so much fun. We never tried the restaurant…your pics makes me feel that we should have given the food a shot…maybe next time!

  • Carlinn

    We are heading to Iceland in November. I was actually trying to decide if we should go to the blue lagoon or to some other geothermal springs in the North. It does look lovely though even with the price and tourisits!

    • Hi Carlinn. How exciting! I would go back in a heartbeat if I could. There are far less touristy hot springs, so it just depends what kind of experience you’re looking for. Either way, it’s hard not to fall in love with Iceland.

  • Thanks so much, Nadine!