Welcome back to another weekly report! We were reporting last week about lower temperatures in June, though our judgment was based only on the eye test. Now we have the official confirmation from meteorologists: current June is the coldest in three decades! Thankfully, in the last few days, temperatures have bounced back, and we can…
Edit: June 9th, 2020
Due to Iceland‘s position on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and the Eurasian and North-American tectonic plates pulling the country apart at the rate of about 2.5 centimeters a year, you can find hot springs in an abundance in Iceland. The Mid-Atlantic Ridge, also called the Reykjanes Ridge, runs under the Reykjanes Peninsula, Þingvellir and Geysir geothermal area, Langjökull and Hofsjökull glaciers and then goes up north through Mývatn and the Krafla area and then again to sea. A small part of the ridge goes under Eyjafjallajökull, Katla, and Öræfajökull in Vatnajökull glacier before joining the rest of the ridge in the north.
It is most likely you will find hot springs in the area near to or on the ridge. Check out our awesome map:
Few things are better than to soak in a natural hot spring after a long day of hiking and activities. Color codes on the map:
Easy to access Hot Spring are Blue.
Only 4×4 access to Hot Spring is Orange.
Tour operator access to Hot Springs is Black.
In West Iceland, near Húsafell, you find Deildartunguhver. The hot spring has a high-water flow rate of about 180 liters per second. That makes it the highest-flow waterfall in Europe. The water emerges at 97° Celsius. Some of it is used to heat up houses in Borgarfjörður and Akranes, 34, and 64 kilometers away.
Krauma spa is just a few meters away from the hot spring. You can bathe and relax in a beautiful setting. Due to the high temperature of the water from Deildartunguhver, Krauma mixes the water with cold water from Rauðsgil. Rauðsgil has its origins in glacier Ok which is Iceland’s smallest glacier. There are geothermal baths, a cold tub, saunas, and a relaxation room. Inside it you can relax in front of the fireplace and listen to soothing music.
At Laugarvatn you find the Fontana geothermal spa, which is built on top of a few hot springs that are on the lake’s shore. The staff of Fontana also bake bread in one of the hot springs there, and at 11:30 AM and 2:30 PM, every day you can for a small fee be able to see them take the bread out and have a taste. The baths have a few different hot tubs and pools as well as saunas and steam rooms. Those more adventurous can take a jump into Laugarvatn itself. Laugarvatn Fontana is a perfect stop while doing the Golden Circle since it is on the way to Geysir geothermal area and Gullfoss waterfall.
Fontana is also a great place to relax after a long day of traveling and enjoy the hot tubs and the local style dinner buffet and possibly see the northern lights.
The Bore Hole in Kerlingafjöll
Kerlingafjöll or Old Lady Mountains in the Icelandic Highlands is a great place to visit. You will need a 4×4 drive car to handle the rough F-Roads that lead there. Unfortunately, you can only do so in the summer. The pool you can enter was made around a borehole which was supposed to be used to heat up houses. Due to its remote location, there are no changing facilities. You either must do it in your camper or out in the open. If you do not have a 4×4 camper, you can take a bus trip there. This is also only available in the summer.
Mývatn Nature Baths in North Iceland
The Nature Baths, like the Blue Lagoon, is a man-made lagoon. The water in the lagoon comes straight from the borehole Bjarnarflag. The borehole is owned by the National Power Company of Iceland. The water is about 130°C straight out of the borehole. Once it enters the lagoon it’s down to about 36 – 40°C.
The water is not unlike the water in the Blue Lagoon. It is filled with minerals and alkaline and despite the sulfur in it, it is excellent for bathing. It is not recommended you bring brass or silver jewelry into the lagoon since it can become black. Sulfur is considered to have a positive effect on respiratory diseases like asthma and other similar diseases.
In the Icelandic Highlands, you can find Landmannalaugar, a beautiful and popular area for hiking. Landmannalaugar is either the start or end of the Laugavegur hike. It is a 55-kilometer-long hiking route between Þórsmörk and Landmannalaugar.
You can find longer and shorter hiking routes in the area, along with cabins and a camping ground.
After a day of hiking, it’s great to take a dip in the Landmannalaugar hot spring, named after the area. The serenity of the place makes the area quite spectacular. There is no changing area, however. You must change in the bathrooms and walk to the hot spring in your bathing suit. Changing by the hot spring out in the open air is also optional.
You can only go there during the summer months and only on a 4×4 wheeled camper.
The pool is the oldest swimming pool in Iceland, having been made in the late 19th century. It is situated near the village of Flúðir in South Iceland and is in the Golden Circle area. The water is a constant 38 – 40°C all year round. The natural surroundings give the Secret Lagoon a very calm feel.
It is a great place to relax during dark winter nights and see the northern lights dance in the sky.
Other hot springs to visit:
Geysir geothermal area in South Iceland, Landbrotalaug in Snæfellsnes in West Iceland, Djúpavogskörin by Djúpavogur in East Iceland, Hellulaug in the West Fjords and the Geothermal Goldfish Pond in North Iceland.
For an in-depth look at all the Hot Springs in Iceland, check out our Ultimate Guide to Hot Springs in Iceland, where we list out every single one in Iceland, plus swimming pools and some cool bubbly ones.
Related Blog Articles
After exceptionally warm and sunny May the weather in Iceland regressed toward the mean in June. Temperatures dropped, heavy showers came and went like a boomerang, and most of the rare sunny days were spoiled by strong winds. It feels like instead of progressing to summer the weather in Iceland went backward to early spring….