5 hot lagoons in Iceland: From the Blue Lagoon spa to the geothermal hot springs

One of the world's most beautiful natural phenomena

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The Independent Travel

It's hard to think of a multi-sensory experience more Zen and restorative than bathing in a hot spring surrounded by snow in the middle of nowhere underneath the Northern Lights.

There are several locations where this is possible in Iceland, many of which are not far from the Keflavík international airport, which you can now stop off at on your way to the US through Icelandair for no additional charge.

So before you head to the malls and skyscrapers, here's some cleansing bubbling waters to thrash about in like a majestic whale.

Blue Lagoon (Bláa lónið)

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The best known lagoon and the most touristy, but still very special.

Sunk into black lava rubble, the opaque aquamarine water makes it feel like you're floating in a giant cocktail.

There's a bar and mud treatments by the water's edge and while it's not actually completely natural - the water is outflow from a nearby geothermal power station - it is the most visually spectacular lagoon.

Secret Lagoon (Gamla Laugin

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Me chugging a beer in the Secret Lagoon (Picture: Christopher Hooton)

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As this the name implies, this spring is little, located in the snowy wilderness and very unspoiled.

A tiny changing room cabin has a fridge stocked with beer and wine and the water is an amazing temperature - like when you get in a bath and it's just verging on too hot.

Go at night and, weather permitting, the aurora borealis will be unfurling above you.

Viti

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(Picture: Getty)

 

Created in an explosion that blew debris as far as Denmark in 1875, this crater is only accessible for a couple of weeks during the summer but is like setting foot on another planet.

Just watch out for scolding sulphurous vents around the edge.

Landmannalaugar

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(Picture: Bekassine)

 

These 'people's pools' are a real challenge to get to - lots of driving up mountains and through shallow rivers - but if you can make it (or organise a jeep tour) you'll find hot springs nestled between the hills.

This is mother nature not tourist attraction, so parts will be cold, parts will be boiling hot, and you'll need to wander upstream until you find a suitable mix.

Grjótagjá

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(Picture: Getty)

 

This pool situated inside a cave is so beautiful it was scoped out by Game of Thrones producers and used in a recent episode.

Temperatures vary according to Iceland's seismic activity as the pool sits on tectonic plates, but locals say it's been good for bathing since 2004.

Icelandair is celebrating the Northern Lights with a new plane bathed in its colours - the Hekla Aurora.

Click here to view Iceland Tour, with Independent Holidays.

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