Monday, December 12, 2011

Enjoying The Blue Lagoon with a Toddler

The Blue Lagoon (Bláa lónið in Icelandic) is one of Iceland's most popular geothermal areas and it's not hard to imagine why.  The black lava formations and pools of milky blue water are stunning to look at.  Sure it’s touristy, but how lovely to spend time relaxing in the calming, warm, geothermal water.

The Blue Lagoon is located in Grindavik, about a 20 minute drive from Keflavik International Airport, and about a 40 minute drive from downtown Reykjavik.  We timed our visit for when the lagoon first opened for the day, and this gave us plenty of breathing room both in the lagoon and in the change rooms.  By the time we left late in the morning, the lagoon was packed with people, so we were thankful to have arrived early.

The water temperature in the lagoon ranges from 37-39°C (98-102°F).  At the time of our visit, we found the area closest to where you enter the lagoon to be on the cooler end of the spectrum, so we mainly kept our 2 year old in that area so he wouldn't overheat.  The deepest part of the lagoon is just over 5 feet deep, but most of the lagoon is more shallow, so it was easy to carry our son in the water and explore.

The entrance fee is a hefty 30 Euros for adults but children under 14 are free.  For those packing light, swimsuits and towels can be rented for 5 Euros a piece.  Water wings are mandatory for all children under the age of 9 and are provided for use at no charge.  It's pricey, but the on-site cafe has a good variety of fruit, smoothies, skyr (awesome Icelandic yogurt) and other healthy snacks.

Showers are required for all bathers prior to entering the lagoon, and highly recommended afterwards to get off the salt.  Icelanders are accustomed to showering in the nude, but stalls are available for more privacy.  Our son came into the women’s change room with me.  The floors of the showers are very slippery especially for little feet.  The provided high chairs and 'Bumbo' seats were very helpful for keeping our son safe in view while leaving leaving my hands free to have my own shower.

Frankly I was a bit nervous taking our son to the Blue Lagoon.  I wasn't sure he'd enjoy it, I wasn't sure about the logistics of the showers, and with the expensive entrance fee, it felt like a costly gamble.  But I shouldn't have worried.  Our toddler loved our morning lazing about in the lagoon, and to this day when I mention The Blue Lagoon, he smiles and says “blue milk”.

2 comments:

  1. Did they check your child's age on the passport to go in the blue lagoon?

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    1. We didn't bring our passports with us to the Blue Lagoon and nobody questioned his age. If it is a concern for an older child not wanting to wear the water wings, be aware the colour of the water makes it virtually impossible to see a child under the surface so it isn't a bad thing to dissuade intrepid little ones from going under the surface.

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