The Blue Lagoon geothermal spa is one of the most visited attractions in Iceland.
It is located in a lava field in Grindavik on the Reykjanes Peninsula, southwestern Iceland. The warm waters are rich in minerals like silica and sulfur.
Bathing in the Blue Lagoon is believed to help some people suffering from skin problems such as psoriasis. There is also a research and development facility operating at the Lagoon trying to help find cures for other skin ailments using the mineral-rich water.
Here are some interesting things to know about this magical place:
5. Warm Water Year-Round
The water temperature in the bathing and swimming area of the lagoon averages 37-39 °C (99-102 °F).
4. Lagoon is Man-Made
The lagoon is made and taken care of by men. The water is supplied from the nearby geothermal power plant Svartsengi and is renewed every two days. Superheated water is vented from the ground near a lava flow and used to run turbines that generate electricity.
3. Water Must be Disposed of in Lava Field
The rich mineral content is provided by the underground geological layers and pushed up to the surface by the hot water (at about 1.2 MPa (170 psi) pressure and 240 °C (464 °F) temperature) used by the plant. Because of its mineral concentration, water cannot be recycled and must be disposed of in the nearby landscape, a permeable lava field that varies in thickness from 50 cm (20 in) to 1 m (3.3 ft).
2. Minerals Cause Milky Blue Shade
The silicate minerals are the main cause of that water’s milky blue shade. After the minerals have formed a deposit, the water reinfiltrates the ground, but the deposit renders it impermeable over time, hence the necessity for the plant to continuously dig new ponds in the nearby lava field.
1. Featured in Many Movies and Television Shows
The Blue Lagoon was used as the pit stop for the first leg of The Amazing Race 6. It was also used for the spa scenes in the Hostel: Part II. You may also recognize it in the Incubus documentary Look Alive, when the band visited Iceland, as well as in the fifth cycle of Britain’s Next Top Model which used as photoshoot location.