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BlueLagoon1

All About the Blue Lagoon

October 24, 2019

BlueLagoon1

All About the Blue Lagoon

October 24, 2019

A Blue Oasis in a Lava Field

The milky blue lagoon in the Reykjanes peninsula is quite striking in contrast to the black lava field and fragile green moss surrounding it. The geothermal water is between 37° and 40° C (98-104°F) but can sometimes fluctuate beyond that range.

A happy accident

What many people don't know is that the lagoon is man made and was in fact originally an environmental accident. The water is actually waste water from the nearby geothermal power plant Svartsengi. When it opened in 1976, it was decided to let the water trickle into the lava field, assuming it would be absorbed by the porous ground. The dissolved minerals in the water instead created a blanket of mud which formed the foundations of the lagoon.

Five years later, in 1981, people started bathing in the small lagoon. There were no facilities there so people would get changed either in their cars or just out in the open. Stories about the healing powers of the water soon spread out, and people suffering from psoriasis in varying degrees swore it helped them with their disease.

The Blue Lagoon Spa

In 1992 the Blue Lagoon Company was established. Facilities where people could undress and shower before entering the lagoon were built, and it has since become a luxury spa and one of the most visited attractions in Iceland.

Eventually the power plant was moved, which in turn meant the lagoon itself had to be moved. New facilities were built, a restaurant was added as well as research facilities and a hotel.

Why is the lagoon blue?

The lagoon gets its colour from the silica in the water. However, the algae sometimes give it a greenish hue in summer.

Additional silica is kept in barrels around the lagoon for bathers to slather on at will. It is reportedly very good for your skin. We don't recommend putting it in your hair though and some use conditioner before entering the lagoon to keep their hair from becoming very stiff and difficult to manage.

Where does the water come from?

The water comes from the nearby geothermal power plant Svartsengi. Geothermal power plants use boreholes to get their water, sometimes from as deep as 5,000 metres. There is no need to go further down than 2,000 metres in Reykjanes to get to the superheated water. At this depth, the water is infused with sea water and is very rich in minerals.

On the way up, the water changes to steam due to pressure changes. The steam then powers large turbines which in turn create electricity for the municipalities of Reykjanes.

Leftover steam is used to heat up fresh groundwater which is pumped up from the surrounding area. The heated freshwater is then used to heat up houses. Reykjanes is one of a few places in Iceland where you can drink the hot water from the tap. In other places, such as in the capital area, geothermal water is pumped directly into the system, giving it that distinct and very authentic smell of sulphur.

The excess water from the power plant is what makes up the Blue Lagoon.

Please shower before entering the lagoon

There are strict rules regarding hygiene before going into the Blue Lagoon (and all geothermal baths in Iceland for that matter). Everyone must wash his or her whole body without swimsuits and with soap before entering. There are seperate changing rooms and showers for men and women and the shower area has enclosed cubicles for those uncomfortable with semi-public nudity. We do recommed going nude with the locals however, it does wonders for body positivity!

That said, just respect your own boundaries and the lagoon's by adhering to these rules. It is after all, a place to feel completely relaxed in luxurious wellness.

BlueLagoon3
BlueLagoon2

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BlueLagoon1

All About the Blue Lagoon

October 24, 2019

BlueLagoon1

All About the Blue Lagoon

October 24, 2019

A Blue Oasis in a Lava Field

The milky blue lagoon in the Reykjanes peninsula is quite striking in contrast to the black lava field and fragile green moss surrounding it. The geothermal water is between 37° and 40° C (98-104°F) but can sometimes fluctuate beyond that range.

A happy accident

What many people don't know is that the lagoon is man made and was in fact originally an environmental accident. The water is actually waste water from the nearby geothermal power plant Svartsengi. When it opened in 1976, it was decided to let the water trickle into the lava field, assuming it would be absorbed by the porous ground. The dissolved minerals in the water instead created a blanket of mud which formed the foundations of the lagoon.

Five years later, in 1981, people started bathing in the small lagoon. There were no facilities there so people would get changed either in their cars or just out in the open. Stories about the healing powers of the water soon spread out, and people suffering from psoriasis in varying degrees swore it helped them with their disease.

The Blue Lagoon Spa

In 1992 the Blue Lagoon Company was established. Facilities where people could undress and shower before entering the lagoon were built, and it has since become a luxury spa and one of the most visited attractions in Iceland.

Eventually the power plant was moved, which in turn meant the lagoon itself had to be moved. New facilities were built, a restaurant was added as well as research facilities and a hotel.

Why is the lagoon blue?

The lagoon gets its colour from the silica in the water. However, the algae sometimes give it a greenish hue in summer.

Additional silica is kept in barrels around the lagoon for bathers to slather on at will. It is reportedly very good for your skin. We don't recommend putting it in your hair though and some use conditioner before entering the lagoon to keep their hair from becoming very stiff and difficult to manage.

Where does the water come from?

The water comes from the nearby geothermal power plant Svartsengi. Geothermal power plants use boreholes to get their water, sometimes from as deep as 5,000 metres. There is no need to go further down than 2,000 metres in Reykjanes to get to the superheated water. At this depth, the water is infused with sea water and is very rich in minerals.

On the way up, the water changes to steam due to pressure changes. The steam then powers large turbines which in turn create electricity for the municipalities of Reykjanes.

Leftover steam is used to heat up fresh groundwater which is pumped up from the surrounding area. The heated freshwater is then used to heat up houses. Reykjanes is one of a few places in Iceland where you can drink the hot water from the tap. In other places, such as in the capital area, geothermal water is pumped directly into the system, giving it that distinct and very authentic smell of sulphur.

The excess water from the power plant is what makes up the Blue Lagoon.

Please shower before entering the lagoon

There are strict rules regarding hygiene before going into the Blue Lagoon (and all geothermal baths in Iceland for that matter). Everyone must wash his or her whole body without swimsuits and with soap before entering. There are seperate changing rooms and showers for men and women and the shower area has enclosed cubicles for those uncomfortable with semi-public nudity. We do recommed going nude with the locals however, it does wonders for body positivity!

That said, just respect your own boundaries and the lagoon's by adhering to these rules. It is after all, a place to feel completely relaxed in luxurious wellness.

BlueLagoon3
BlueLagoon2

The RE blog

ua0HKR9O
JRJ05671_Ketchup_blackdiamondbeach
vaskur
Golden-Circle-and-Fontana-Steam-bath
Fjaðrárgljúfur
Into the Glacier
Eistnaflug_EydisKlaraThorleifsdottir
iStock-1151150610
RE63
JRJ09685-min Dress the Part
Thorsmork Panorama
Nature Pool
BlueLagoon1
Skógafoss waterfall Iceland hero mynd
RE05-Reykjavik Panorama
kirkjufell-12x7
Reykjanes

Christmas Traditions

Where to begin? There’s the Christmas Cat, a lot of great food, a little bit of truly bad food, way too many fireworks, bonfires, a “book flood,” and an endless amount of Santa Clauses (we call them Yule Lads).

Read more