The phenomenally exquisite Blue Lagoon is located in a lava field near Grindavík on the Reykjanes Peninsula in southwestern Iceland, an area best known for its barren landscapes and cone-shaped volcanoes.
While Iceland teems with natural hot springs, the Blue Lagoon isn’t one of them. The warm blue reservoir formed as a result of the nearby geothermal power plant’s drilling for steam and hot water. While the engineers at the Svartsengi Resource Park had expected the water to seep through the lava and return to the volcanic aquifers, given the high concentration of silica, this never happened.
Instead, a beautiful body of water occurred, with a new batch of super-heated sulfur- and silica-heavy water flowing into the lagoon every two days. The water’s unique powers were discovered in the early 1980s when local residents began to bathe here tentatively. Over the decades, the Blue Lagoon has grown from a natural curiosity into a recognized world wonder.
A modern wellness complex, with saunas, a steaming hot waterfall, and various water-based treatments that promote the eco-friendly skin care merchandise produced at source, has developed. An interplay of architecture and design with a strong focus on the world of wellness.
Not only an incredibly photogenic experience, which it is in those smoky shades of milky electric blue, but a visit to the Blue Lagoon allows bathers to soak up some of the healing powers so good for body, mind and spirit – while soaking away their everyday stresses.
At around 102°F, the perfect temperature for bathing, the Blue Lagoon is open every day of the year, although the best time to visit is a late summer night to fully enjoy the midnight sun, or in winter for the Northern Lights.
As a matter of interest, the first person to take a dip in the lagoon was a young man named Valur Margeirsson, who got special permission from the chairman of the plant in 1981 to do so. Valur suffered from psoriasis and hoped that the water would help his skin. In fact, it worked wonders. Valur can also be credited with giving the name Blue Lagoon to the geothermal pool.
The picturesque sunset over landscapes and waterfalls. Kirkjufell mountain, Iceland.
Some people came to the water for healing. Others for pleasure. But all who came left with a profound sense of wonder. – Unknown
** This post forms part of my 100x Magical Places series which offers an introduction to my favourite destinations.
** Pics sourced.