What can you expect when visiting Iceland? Mountains, waterfalls, untouched nature, glaciers, and if you’re lucky, active volcanoes. And last but not least, steaming hot springs: the secret recipe for surviving Icelandic weather.
Iceland is a geothermal paradise offering man-made baths, swimming pools, natural hot springs, or even public hot pots. We give you seven tips on which Icelandic hot springs you shouldn’t miss on your trip to the land of fire and ice. So, soak in and enjoy the breathtaking landscapes around you!
Víti, located within the Askja caldera in the Highlands of Iceland, is a volcanic crater filled with warm, mineral-rich water. It is not easy to get there as it requires a good car and good weather conditions, but it is a must-visit place if you are up for some adventure.
Why go to Víti
Víti offers the unique experience of swimming in a crater in the middle of remote Icelandic nature. With the surrounding black volcanic landscapes that look like from another world, this visit will leave you with strong memories. Moreover, this is not a typical tourist spot. The isolation makes it an escape from the busy tourist spots.
How to get to Víti
To visit Askja, you’ll need a 4×4 vehicle, and it’s only accessible during the summer months. Be prepared for a challenging drive through the Highlands. The most common starting point is from the north of Iceland. Take the Route F88 from Myvatn. The road will take you to the F91 leading towards Askja.
Tips on visiting Víti
- From the car park at the end of the road, a hiking trail about 2.5 km long leads to the crater rim and Lake Öskjuvatn.
- The spot is accessible only during the summer season from mid-June until mid-September and is suitable only for advanced drivers.
- Be sure to choose the proper car for Iceland, especially for the highlands
Swimming in Víti is a unique experience, but be cautious, as the water can be quite warm.
Guðrúnarlaug Hot Spring
Guðrúnarlaug is a cozy hot spring in the west of Iceland. A landslide collapsed on the original hot tub, so the original Guðrún hot pool has been closed for 140 years. Nowadays, you can visit a replica of the original hot tub, which was built based on what we believe hot pools looked like in Viking times.
Why go to Guðrúnarlaug
It is one of Iceland’s hidden gems offering a peaceful and intimate experience in the middle of beautiful nature. The water isn’t too hot, so it’s ideal for someone who doesn’t like hot springs with high temperatures. It makes it ideal for a relaxing bath. Plus, its outlying location means fewer people, allowing you to fully relax and enjoy the moment. Together with the hot tub, there is a very cute changing room made from wood and stones where you can change and leave your clothes.
How to get to Guðrúnarlaug
Guðrúnarlaug Hot Spring is located in the western part of Iceland around 170 kilometers from Reykjavík. If you are heading there from the capital, follow the Ring Road, and when you reach Bifröst, turn on Road 60, which will take you almost to the spot. The hot spring is next to Dalahótel.
Tips on visiting Guðrúnarlaug
- As we said, the water is not too hot, which may be good, but when the weather is not very pleasant, the water might be too cold.
- If you are going from Reykjavík, make a stop in Bifröst and enjoy a walk on the top of the volcanic crater.
- Plan the visit this spring if you are heading to Westfjords as it is on your way.
Hrunalaug is another cute and cozy hot spring accompanied by wooden and stone shelter. It might remind you of Guðrúnarlaug Hot Spring, but it is larger and strategically located near the Golden Circle.
Why go to Hrunalaug
Hrunalaug offers a small quiet hot spot hidden in the middle of lush greenery. There is a place to change or leave your clothes and two natural pools. It is an excellent alternative to the crowded Fontana Spa and Secret Lagoon located nearby.
It used to be a lesser-known spot for experiencing Iceland’s geothermal wonders. However, it is getting more and more popular. But if you are lucky, the pools might be totally empty, and you can fully enjoy this peaceful place. The steam rising from the warm water and the nearby river make you feel like you’re in a fairy tale.
How to get to Hrunalaug
To find Hrunalaug, you must head to the small village of Flúðir. From there, it’s just a short drive. Follow Road 344 and after around 3km turn right, follow the road for another 700 meters, and then turn right again. In a few meters, you will arrive at the parking lot of Hrunalaug. Leave your car here and walk around 130 meters until you reach the destination.
Tips on visiting Hrunalaug
- Hrunalaug is situated on private land. For security reasons and probably because of rising popularity, there are set opening hours and entrance fees (2000 ISK for adults). There is also a time limit for visiting, which is 1 hour 30 mins.
Located on the beach in the remote part of Westfjords, bringing you to the untouched Icelandic landscapes. That is Krossneslaug. The drive there is rough, but it is worth the adventure.
Why go to Krossneslaug
The experience here is about embracing the wild beauty of Iceland while enjoying a warm, relaxing bath. The pool is right by the ocean, offering you a stunning view of the Arctic Ocean. There is a big chance, you will be there alone, therefore you’ll feel like you’ve discovered a well-kept secret and reached the end of the world.
How to get to Krossneslaug
We won’t lie. You need time and some strong nerves to get to Krossneslaug, maybe even a 4×4 car, as the road is a bit bumpy and unpaved. But it isn’t necessary. Getting to Westfjords itself is quite an adventure, so this might add some spice to it.
Drive to Hólmavík, follow the main road until a turn on Road 643. There aren’t many options, so follow the road by the shore another 80km. The pool is by the end of the road, so you cannot miss it.
Tips on visiting Krossneslaug
- It is not a natural hot spring. It is an outside pool, but it is large and good for swimming.
- There is a cabin with changing rooms, toilets, and a shower for both men and women.
- There is an entrance fee of 1000 ISK for adults.
- The drive is difficult, but you get a chance to enjoy some amazing views and experience true Icelandic landscapes.
Also read: Solo traveler in Iceland? No problem
Reykjadalur is very popular as it is a true geothermal wonderland located just a short drive from Reykjavik in the south of Iceland.
Why go to Reykjadalur
Reykjadalur is unique as it is not just a hot pool. It is a hot river. You get to hike through beautiful landscapes and then relax in a warm river surrounded by stunning views. It is a perfect for one-day trip if you are in Reykjavík or the south.
How to get to Reykjadalur
Firstly, you need to get to Hveragerði, which is a 45-minute drive from Reykjavik, or 1 hour and 45mins from Vík. The hike to the hot river takes around 45 minutes.
Tips on visiting Reykjadalur
- Get ready for some crowds. This is a very popular spot.
- The higher you get on the river, the warmer the water gets. Be aware of signs telling you where not to go.
- The whole area is full of trails so if you are a hiking lover, you can enjoy some extra steps.
Drangsnes Hot Pots
Drangsnes Hot Pots offers a unique coastal bathing experience in the charming village of Drangsnes. These three seaside hot tubs overlook the ocean, providing a great way how to relax.
Why go to Drangsnes
To enjoy sunrise, and sunset, or experience the midnight sun almost in the middle of nowhere. If you are traveling around Westfjords, stop in Drangsnes and enjoy some time off with a view. Although the tubs are located right next to the road, they are strategically hidden behind the rocks so you can enjoy your moment of relaxation truly undisturbed.
How to get to Drangsnes
The hot tubs are in the middle of Drangsnes in Westfjords, not very far away from Hólmavík. You need to get on Road 61 and then turn on Road 643, after a few kilometers turn on Road 645 and continue until you reach Drangsnes.
Tips on visiting Drangsnes
- Across the road from these tubs, there is a shower and toilets. The place is well maintained.
- If you are lucky enough, you might see some whales in the distance or seals playing in the ocean.
Húsafell Canyon Baths
Húsafell Canyon Baths are a set of man-made geothermal baths nestled in a lava field in West Iceland. Even though the place isn’t natural, it is designed to blend smoothly with the landscape. If you are looking for a place to escape from a rush, this might be a place for you.
Why go to Húsafell Canyon Baths
The baths are constructed from local natural materials and sources such as stone from the canyon floor. The cabin is made from saved wood from the area. Even the hooks in the changing room are reused horseshoes from a family farm in the neighborhood. By visiting this place, you will not only feel connected to Icelandic nature but also to Icelandic traditions.
How to get to Húsafell Canyon Baths
Húsafell is about a two-hour drive from Reykjavik. The baths are easily accessible, and you’ll find them within the Húsafell Resort area. To get there you need to follow the road 518.
Tips on visiting Húsafell Canyon Baths
- This is a paid hot pool. If you plan to visit it, don’t forget to book your ticket in advance.
- The water is around 38 degrees, although there is a natural 6-degree pool fed directly from the river.
- Combine the visit to the baths with exploring the Icelandic Highlands.
As you plan your visit to Iceland, don’t forget to add these remarkable hot springs to your itinerary.
Whether you seek adventure in the remote Highlands or a tranquil soak in the midst of nature, Iceland’s hot springs offer a diverse range of experiences.
From hidden gems to well-known attractions, each hot spring holds its own unique charm, promising unforgettable memories amidst Iceland’s breathtaking landscapes.
- 15 Iceland travel tips you should know before going
- Can you fly a drone in Iceland?
- Getting the most out of a short trip to Iceland in Winter
- Iceland Northern Lights