Iceland’s Blue Lagoon is a true bucket list activity. Located in the midst of an expansive lava field, the famed pool is a naturally heated spa, filled with geothermic waters. Silica lines the lagoon and is responsible for both its iconic milky appearance and incredible health benefits.
However, there’s a catch. The Blue Lagoon is a massive tourist trap. Located in a remote area, it has a monopoly on all amenities and can become extremely busy, extremely quickly. I also discovered that the water does go through a treatment system, but only to cool it down – so I guess I can forgive them that.
However, this doesn’t mean you should forgo the experience – it’s well worth the money! Just that you need to play things a bit smarter. Here’s my list of Do’s and Don’ts to make the most of your lagoon experience.
DO- Embrace the Weather
My trip to the Blue Lagoon was booked during a hurricane. Museum personnel in Reykjavik were explicitly warning guests not to travel out of the city, and we assumed that would mean cancellations. Not in Iceland.
The coach was delayed but still left with no concern. I’m pretty sure we almost died on several occasions driving through the sheets of water falling from the sky – but we made it!
And I’m so glad we did! Sitting in the steaming waters, with the moody sky and thrashing winds ripping around our heads, was a truly unforgettable experience. Don’t be put off by cold and bad weather. It’s part of the package!
DON’T – Get Dehydrated
I must admit, I laughed pretty heartily at the signs everywhere telling you not to get dehydrated. I was pretty sure I could handle floating around in a warm pool for an hour without suffering from any severe health repercussions. The only available water fountain involved a quick dash through icy winds in your bikini, and bottles from the bar were horrendously overpriced.
However, when I finally got back into the changing room, it took mere moments for me to realize that I was pretty close to passing out. Cleary I’d underestimated the heat and mineral content of the lagoon. Seriously guys – remember to drink water.
DO – Explore the Perimeter
Many people enter the lagoon and bob around in the first pool. the water is a weird depth here, so you find yourself squatting awkwardly. However, a float around the perimeter offers a plethora of exciting surprises.
Not only are there plenty of shallow patches where you can lounge in comfort, but the views from some of the additional pools are also way more spectacular than gazing over the changing rooms and restaurant area! It’s also an excellent way to orientate yourself to the location of the bar, saunas and facemask dispensary.
However, our excursion to the outskirts brought a rather unpleasant shock – until we uncovered the reason. Which brings me on to the next point:
DON’T – Freak Out At the Slime
Every so often, the placid atmosphere of the lagoon is broken with a shrill shriek. It wasn’t until I emitted the sound myself, that I discovered the reason. Particularly around the edges, the solid floor is covered with great mounds of slime – a pretty unpleasant experience if you aren’t expecting them.
But there’s no need to worry! The slime is merely a build up of the Silica in the water – the same thing as the free facemasks on offer. Once you’ve come to terms with this knowledge, it’s a pretty awesome experience to run your hands through the smooth, clay-like substance and rub the healing compound over your skin!
DO – Hire a Robe
The Blue Lagoon is all about the additional costs. On top of the basic entrance fee, you have to pay for towels and robes. As most budget travelers would, I concluded these were unnecessary expenses and simply brought my own towel.
However, after having to make the freezing trip from the pool to the changing rooms a couple of times – by which point my towel was as drenched as I was – I decided it was time to invest in a robe.
It was definitely the right decision.
No longer was my relaxing experience brought to a sudden halt whenever I had to go inside. It even meant I could spend some time wandering around the wooden platforms and taking pictures.
DON’T – Buy a Drink
While some additional investments are worthwhile, others are not. Because of my health problems, I’m not really meant to drink. But when we discovered the hilarious submerged bar dispensing pints of beer, the novelty was too much to resist.
However, not only was it ridiculously expensive, but it also meant having one very cold hand from trying to keep the beer out of the water. A task that became redundant fast as the steam from the pool heated up the drink anyway. Plus, there was something that seemed hypocritical about putting harmful alcohol in my body while spending time at a healing spa.
To the despair of many nearby onlookers, I threw away the beer after only a few sips. (Blasphemy, I know.)
I would recommend the Blue Lagoon over and over. It truly was one of the best experiences of my life. However, I thought it would benefit you guys to be able to learn from my mistakes!
Have you made it to the Blue Lagoon yet? Or do you have an upcoming trip? Are there any additional tips that you think you be on the list, or are you surprised by some of my revelations?! Let me know in the comments below!