The beginner's guide to The Blue Lagoon

The gorgeous blue waters of Iceland's most visited tourist spot.

The gorgeous blue waters of Iceland's most visited tourist spot.

Anna Margrét Björnsson
Anna Margrét Björnsson

The gloriously enchanting Blue Lagoon is on most traveller's lists of must-sees in Iceland. It's recently been enlarged to accommodate the ever increasing number of guests, a succesful and very natural addition to this milky, aquamarine coloured lake.

Although there are plenty of natural hot springs in Iceland, the Blue Lagoon is actually a result of the nearby geothermal plant and was formed in 1976. In the eighties and early nineties people bathed in its unique waters, milky with silica mud, and those with skin conditions and exzema noticed great improvement to their skin.

In those times, the changing rooms were a mere shack by the edge of the water but now, The Blue Lagoon is without a doubt the most sophisticated spa experience you will find in Iceland, or for that matter, on an international scale.

Here are a few tips from Iceland Monitor before you plan your trip and submerge yourselves into its healing waters.

1. Book ahead.

You absolutely have to do this, book a scheduled time otherwise you will most probably not get in. This is easily done online or through the bus company who take you there from Reykjavik.

2. Decide on the kind of package you want, or can afford.

You can choose anything ranging from standard to premium and you can see what is included in those packages HERE. Whichever one you choose, you're guaranteed that the experience will be an unforgettable one.

If you have a lot money and time to spend, the luxury package is most definitely worth it. It's the choice of the Beyoncé's and Kardashian's of the world and includes this super cool private area where you can change and shower in private luxury, with a personal waiter to bring you drinks and fresh fruit into your own private lounge area into which the warm water enters if you want a secluded dip.

3. Shower, naked, before getting in.

Those of you familar with Iceland and its shower rules will know the drill. If you don't, there are actually polite members of Blue Lagoon staff that will MAKE you shower before you put your swimsuit on and get into the lagoon. Which of course, is all about hygiene and you don't want to swim in someone else's dirt, do you?

But if you are, unlike  Icelanders, prudish about nudity in a same-sex shower room, fear not. The Blue Lagoon is the only swimming place in the whole of Iceland that has actually fitted showers with doors on them. This is a bizarre sight for Icelanders but may be a comfort to some.

4. Take care of your hair

Everyone tells you to just put conditioner into your hair and you'll be fine. Not true.  If you have long tresses, our advice is to put it in a high bun slathered in coconut oil, or, if you really really care about your hair, put a plastic cap over it. Your hair will just get really really dry and disgusting after a swim in the lagoon, and it will take a few deep cleansing shampoos and a few days before it gets back to normal. You have been warned.

5. Book a massage

It's so worth it !It's a completely unique experience as you get to float on these mattresses in a calm, quiet corner of the lagoon while a fantastic professional masseur tackles your aches and pains. At the end of it, you're welcome to float on a bit longer, and could even take a nap.

6. Have a drink

Swim over to the supercool in-water bar. Obviously a lot of people will go  for a glass of white wine, beer or a cocktail, which is of course fun, but the Blue Lagoon also offers these delicious, healthy smoothies made with Icelandic skyr and fresh fruit, or fresh juices for a super kick of energy.

Eggert Jóhannesson

7. Put on a mask

You're here for a spa-experience so slather the white algae mask on your face and leave it on until it hardens. This mask is purifying, cleansing and revitalising and will calm any skin conditions. After looking like a total idiot for a around 15 minutes, take it off, and go on to the green Algae mask. This is complementary with some packages, otherwise you have to buy it additionally. Leave this on for a while and you'll look rejuvenated and hydrated, we promise. You can also buy these masks upon leaving the premises at the Blue Lagoon shop .

8. Understand the super high-tech bracelet thingy

Oh, and before we forget. Upon entrance, you get this futuristic bracelet which you can use for opening and shutting your locker, for purchasing drinks, massages and whatnot while you're in the water.Árni Sæberg

9. Don't kill your phone

Everyone takes selfies at the Blue Lagoon. Obviously all that steam is a really bad idea for your new gold I-phone 6S and yes, you could easily drop it in. You can buy waterproof covers for your phone at the premises, and you won't regret it.

10. DO, absolutely, go the Lava restaurant.

If you have time, you really should complete your Blue Lagoon experience by eating at the fabulous Lava restaurant which has a great team of chefs that have experience from Michelin star restaurants in New York, London and Paris. And all this with that unique new Icelandic twist - lots of lamb, fish, shellfish and seasonal Icelandic ingredients. Believe us, you'll be ravenous after your swim in the lagoon and a wonderful four-course culinary adventure will put the final touch to your day before heading back. Book a table HERE.




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