NatureHot SpringsTop Icelandic Hot Springs: Relaxation in the Heart of Iceland
Aerial view of Iceland's hot springs with steam rising from the pools
Go Car Rental Iceland travel writer Aron Freyr
By Aron FreyrJun 7, 2024 • 7 min read

Top Icelandic Hot Springs: Relaxation in the Heart of Iceland

Iceland, the land of fire and ice, is home to some of the most breathtaking natural hot springs in the world, including the famous hot springs in Iceland. These geothermal wonders offer more than just a warm soak; they provide an unforgettable experience that combines relaxation, rejuvenation, and awe-inspiring scenery. Dive into the world of Iceland’s hot springs and discover why they should be at the top of your must-visit list.

Key Takeaways

  • Experience Iceland’s renowned hot springs with unique landscapes and warm, mineral-rich waters.
  • Adhere to the dress code and hair/skin protection tips when visiting for an optimal experience.
  • Enjoy winter or summer highlights at different times of year. Witness Northern Lights in winter or soak up stunning views in the summer months.

Iceland's Geothermal Wonders: Why Hot Springs are a Must-Visit

Iceland’s hot springs, also known as Iceland hot springs, are a result of the country’s unique geological characteristics and the remarkable experiences they offer. Imagine soaking in warm, mineral-rich waters while taking in the majestic beauty of the surrounding landscape.

Delving into the geological factors that lead to these geothermal marvels further elucidates the unique experiences they afford.

Geological Factors

Volcanic activity and tectonic plate movements contribute to the prevalence of scenic hot springs in Iceland, offering visitors breathtaking views and unique experiences. Some notable hot springs in Iceland include:

  • The Blue Lagoon, which was formed in 1976 due to surplus water from a nearby geothermal power plant
  • The Secret Lagoon, a natural hot spring located in the Golden Circle area
  • Reykjadalur Hot Springs, where visitors can hike to reach the hot springs and enjoy a relaxing soak in nature

Iceland’s geothermal activity stems from its location at the convergence of two diverging tectonic plates, which leads to significant volcanic activity.

Nestled in the heart of Iceland’s stunning landscape, Hrunalaug is a small and cozy hot spring near Flir in southern Iceland. This rustic and secluded hot spring provides a serene atmosphere with no amenities, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in Icelandic nature and culture. However, some may argue that hot springs lack certain comforts found in more developed locations.

Unique Experiences

Iceland’s hot springs offer more than a mere warm soak; they serve as hubs of relaxation, rejuvenation, and health benefits, all set within stunning natural surroundings. The mineral-rich waters are believed to provide relief from nasal and lung congestion and may even have a positive effect on certain medical conditions, such as psoriasis. At the Blue Lagoon, visitors can enjoy a swim-up bar and a “mud bar” where they can apply a silica mud mask.

Beyond the restorative properties of the waters, the encompassing landscapes present a visual spectacle. Whether it’s the dramatic lava fields of the Blue Lagoon, the serene vistas at Hrunalaug, or the awe-inspiring scenery at Mývatn Nature Baths, the natural beauty of Iceland’s hot springs is truly unparalleled.

Top Hot Springs in Iceland

Blue Lagoon

Most Popular Hot Spring in Iceland.

The Blue Lagoon is undoubtedly Iceland’s most famous hot spring, offering a luxurious spa experience and unique milky-blue waters.

Formed in 1976 due to surplus water from a nearby geothermal power plant, the Blue Lagoon has since become a major tourist destination and a must-visit for anyone traveling to Iceland.

Mývatn Nature Baths

Mineral-Rich Geothermal Pools in North Iceland.

Aerial view of the Mývatn Nature Baths in Iceland with people swimming in the mineral rich waters

Located in North Iceland, Mývatn Nature Baths provide a less crowded alternative to the Blue Lagoon, surrounded by stunning lava fields. These geothermal baths offer visitors:

  • A more peaceful and authentic Icelandic experience
  • A chance to relax and unwind in natural hot springs
  • Beautiful views of the surrounding landscape
  • A break from the hustle and bustle of tourist hotspots


Oldest Man-Made Swimming Pools in Iceland.

Nestled between mountains in southern Iceland, Seljavallalaug is Iceland’s oldest man-made swimming pool, heated by a natural hot spring.

This picturesque pool offers a more rustic and remote atmosphere, with basic changing rooms and facilities and water quality that can be affected by algae growth.

Geosea Sea Baths

Blissful Spa in North Iceland.

Geosea Sea Baths offer a unique geothermally heated seawater experience with breathtaking views of the Skjalfandi Bay and the surrounding mountains.

These baths provide a truly unforgettable and relaxing experience for visitors, allowing them to soak in the warm, mineral-rich waters while taking in the stunning natural beauty of Iceland.

Sky Lagoon

Luxurious Geothermal Spa in Southwestern Iceland.

The Sky Lagoon, situated near Reykjavik, is a modern geothermal spa offering an infinity pool and a signature seven-step treatment known as “The Ritual”.

With stunning views of the North Atlantic Ocean, Sky Lagoon provides a luxurious and rejuvenating experience, perfect for those looking to unwind after a day of exploring Iceland’s natural wonders.

The Secret Lagoon

The Oldest Natural Hot Spring in Iceland.

Hot springs in iceland: Secret lagoon, a hot spring  swimming pools located near the golden circle in Iceland

The Secret Lagoon, located near the village of Fludir and the popular Golden Circle sightseeing route, is the oldest hot spring in Iceland.

Offering a more natural and local experience, the Secret Lagoon is a must-visit for anyone looking to experience Iceland’s geothermal wonders in a more authentic setting.

Forest Lagoon

One of the newest lagoons in Iceland.

Newly established in North Iceland, Forest Lagoon is a geothermal spa featuring:

  • Outdoor baths in a serene forest setting
  • Two infinity pools
  • Two in-water bars
  • A sauna and a steam room
  • A quiet room

Forest Lagoon offers a truly immersive and relaxing experience for visitors looking to connect with nature.


Highland Geothermal Oasis in Iceland.

People wearing swimsuits in a hot spring in Iceland

Landmannalaugar, a geothermal hot spring located in the southern Highlands of Iceland, is a picturesque hiking destination with colorful mountains and soothing geothermal pools.

This remote, otherworldly location offers a truly unique experience for those looking to immerse themselves in Iceland’s natural beauty and enjoy the healing properties of the warm waters.


Small Natural Hot Springs in Southern Iceland.

A serene image of Hrunalaug, one of the most popular hot springs in Iceland

Hrunalaug, situated near Flir in southern Iceland, is a small and comfortable hot spring that provides a rustic and secluded atmosphere with no amenities.

Positioned just off the Golden Circle route, Hrunalaug offers visitors a more intimate and tranquil experience, allowing them to truly connect with the Icelandic landscape and appreciate the breathtaking views of the distant mountains.


Man-Made Swimming Pool in North Iceland.

Located on the eastern coast of the remote Westfjords, Krossneslaug is a scenic hot spring with a simple, honesty payment system.

This popular hot spring offers breathtaking views of the ocean and a peaceful atmosphere, allowing visitors to truly unwind and enjoy the soothing warm waters.

Vok Baths

Hot Pool in East Iceland

Vok Baths, located in East Iceland, feature infinity pools of naturally heated and certified drinkable geothermal water. These baths offer visitors the unique opportunity to enjoy the warm, mineral-rich waters of the geothermal pool while taking in the picturesque views of the surrounding landscape.

Hot Springs Etiquette and Tips for Visitors

While visiting Iceland’s hot springs, maintaining awareness of etiquette and tips is pivotal to ensuring a pleasant and respectful experience for everyone.

This section will delve into aspects like dress code, nudity, and hair and skin protection, equipping you to maximize your experience at these geothermal wonders.

Dress Code and Nudity

While the dress code and nudity policy for hot springs in Iceland varies depending on the particular hot spring, generally, swimsuits are required, and nudity is not permitted in public areas.

Be sure to pack a swimsuit and adhere to any specific rules outlined by the hot spring you’re visiting to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience at hot pools for everyone.

Hair and Skin Protection

To protect hair and skin from the mineral-rich hot water, it is recommended to tie hair up and use conditioner or oil before entering the hot springs. This will help to prevent any potential damage to your hair and skin, allowing you to fully enjoy the healing properties of the warm water without any concerns.

Aerial view of a hot spring in Iceland with a wooden boardwalk and snow covered mountains in the background

Seasonal Highlights: When to Visit Iceland's Hot Springs

Iceland’s hot springs offer year-round enjoyment, with each season presenting its distinct experiences and highlights. This section will guide you through the optimal times to visit Iceland’s hot springs, catering to preferences for a winter wonderland or a summer soak.

Winter Wonderland

Visiting Iceland’s hot springs during the winter months offers the chance to witness the stunning Northern Lights and enjoy a snowy landscape.

The contrast of the warm, geothermal waters against the cold, crisp air creates a truly magical experience, making winter an ideal time to visit Iceland’s hot springs.

Summer Soak

During the summer months, Iceland enjoys warmer weather, longer daylight hours, and more accessible remote hot springs.

This makes it the perfect time to explore the country’s geothermal wonders, with the added bonus of being able to enjoy other outdoor activities and attractions during your visit.


Iceland’s hot springs are a must-visit for anyone looking to experience the country’s unique geothermal wonders and breathtaking natural beauty.

From the famous Blue Lagoon to lesser-known gems like Hrunalaug, there’s a hot spring for every traveler’s taste.

Just remember to follow the etiquette and tips provided to ensure a respectful and enjoyable experience for all. So, why wait? Immerse yourself in the healing waters of Iceland’s hot springs and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Iceland have hot springs?

Absolutely! Iceland is renowned for its geothermal activity, which results in numerous hot springs. The Reykjadalur Steam Valley, located near the capital city, is particularly famous for its naturally heated waters.

Is the Blue Lagoon a real hot spring?

The Blue Lagoon is not a real hot spring - it is actually a man-made lagoon, filled with water from the nearby Svartsengi geothermal power plant.

What is the 3 largest hot spring in the world?

The third largest hot spring in the world is the Grand Prismatic Spring located in Yellowstone National Park, USA. It is also the largest hot spring in the United States and is followed by Frying Pan Lake in New Zealand and Boiling Lake in Dominica. Its vibrant colors of orange, yellow, green, and blue make it an attraction for visitors.

What is the most powerful hot spring in Iceland?

Deildartunguhver is the most powerful hot spring in Iceland, located near Borgarnes. It has an impressive flow rate and very hot water, making it the largest of its kind in Europe.

What is the best time to visit an iceland hot springs?

Visiting Iceland's hot springs during the summer months provides warmer weather and longer daylight hours, making it the ideal time to experience the country's geothermal wonders.

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