It’s safe to say that visiting the Blue Lagoon in Iceland is on just about everyone’s bucket list. It’s milky blue water and otherworldly appearance is like something out of a dream. But before my first trip to Iceland, I had read plenty of articles about the Blue Lagoon and there were a couple of common themes: it’s expensive and it will ruin your hair.
I must admit I found neither to be the case for me personally.
I’ve now traveled Iceland twice, and the Blue Lagoon has been on my must-do list both times. My last visit was a 10-day road trip along the Ring Road in a camper van, and by the last day, I could not have been more excited to lounge “lagoon-side” and spend the day relaxing at the Blue Lagoon.
Here are my tips for visiting the Blue Lagoon in Iceland!
Interesting Facts about the Blue Lagoon
- The Blue Lagoon is actually a manmade lagoon; it’s basically one of the world’s most amazing hotel pools. A nearby power plant, Svartsengi, was drilling to create electricity and hot water for nearby communities and the Blue Lagoon was originally an accidental byproduct of this process.
- The Blue Lagoon is now a Geothermal Spa and is run like most other day spas you find around the world. There is accommodation, as well as saunas, restaurants & cafes, lockers, showers, etc.
- The geothermal water features three active ingredients: Silica, Algae & Minerals.
- While it looks blue, the water is actually white. If you pour it into a transparent cup, it will have a milky white color. The sun simply makes it look blue!
- The water temperature is 37-40°C (98-104°F), year-round.
How much does it cost?
As an avid day spa seeker, I actually find day spas to be an amazing affordable luxury in my travels. While I can’t afford to drop $100 on a massage everywhere I go, $40 for day-use at a spa is well worth the mini-splurge.
A little pampering can go a long way!
I recommend bringing your own towel and paying for the standard package (€35). You get your own locker and access to the Lagoon, saunas and showers. I definitely made the most of my visit and stayed for about 4 hours.
You’ll also find as much FREE silica mud as you want located in convenient swim up buckets around the Lagoon. I definitely wasn’t expecting that and it was a huge bonus.
Naturally, I covered myself in it. Twice.
Alcohol around Iceland is just plain expensive. There’s no way around it. But, I was expecting a beer at the Lagoon to be beyond my budget. To my surprise, the awesome swim-up bar sold large draft beer for $8.50. That’s about what you’d pay at any other day spa, sporting event or amusement park.
I had an amazing experience at the Blue Lagoon and highly recommend planning a visit while traveling in Iceland!
Will the Blue Lagoon ruin my hair?
As a blonde, water is my hair’s worst enemy. I’ve definitely had issues with everything from green hair problems after a swim in a pool to breakage from too much ocean water.
I was seriously worried with everything I’d heard about the Blue Lagoon damaging my hair.
Again, I found this widespread concern to not really be an issue at all for me. First, I wet my hair with the shower water and then lathered on a coating of conditioner before getting in. Many girls had their hair up in buns and swim caps, but I was adamant on getting an epic shot in the Lagoon, so I went all in.
After washing and drying, my hair did feel slightly “crispy,” but nothing too concerning. More hair tips below!
How to Prevent & Treat “Blue Lagoon” Hair
To prevent that mineral buildup, pack a clarifying shampoo and a deep-conditioner that doesn’t contain protein. I actually emailed my hairdresser back home for tips to share on my blog and here’s what he said:
“There’s nothing to worry about. It’s not damaged it’s mineral buildup. You just have to clarify it out, then recondition.”
- Get a clarifying shampoo and use it 2-3 times each time you shower.
- Then, use a regular daily shampoo.
- Rinse thoroughly then towel blot out some of the water and put a deep conditioner on the mids and ends of your hair. Don’t use a conditioner with any protein, just pure moisture.
After one wash with a clarifying shampoo and an overnight deep condition, my hair was 100% back to normal!
- The Blue Lagoon is about 45 minutes outside of Reykjavik and about 20 minutes away from the airport. There are shuttle transfers available to the Lagoon from both locations. A local mentioned a good way of visiting is on the day you leave before you head to the airport (if time allows). That way you’re relaxed for your flight!
- The water is not hot hot. It felt more like warm bathwater. Though, after swimming around to different areas, I did find that the warmest spots were oddly located near the placement of trashcans.
- The weather in Iceland is highly unpredictable. I’d often experience all four season in a single day! Don’t let bad weather keep you from going to the Blue Lagoon. It rained, hailed and then got sunny all within the time I was there. Rain = better chance of rainbows!
- If you plan on taking photos inside the Lagoon, use protection. My LifeProof iPhone case was a serious lifesaver in Iceland between the snow, dirt and water we encountered in our adventures.
My Blue Lagoon essentials!
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