Visiting The Secret Lagoon Iceland: A Complete Guide
Despite its name, the Secret Lagoon in Iceland is not so secret these days, but there are still lots of good reasons why you should visit. Visiting a hot spring in Iceland should be very high up on your list of things to do in Iceland. Hot springs are such a huge part of the Icelandic culture and it really is such an amazing experience feeling those warm, geothermal waters, especially on an icy cold day!
By the way – if you’re having the same Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon debate that we had before we went to Iceland in October (the best month to go!), we can say that it was the Secret Lagoon all the way for us.
Note: The Secret Lagoon is temporarily closed until 17th December 2020. This post contains affiliate links. Should you click on them and book something, we may earn a small commission but at no extra cost to you.
Why is it called the Secret Lagoon if it’s not so secret?
The Secret Lagoon is known to the Icelanders as Gamla Laugin which means ‘Old Pool’. The Secret Lagoon is the oldest pool in Iceland, but it was also not very well known and hence earned the name ‘Secret Lagoon’ which has stuck. These days it is not so secret.
We have to admit here that we actually drove past the Secret Lagoon on our self-drive Golden Circle tour! It is quite easy to miss which is why we will detail exactly where it is so you don’t make the same mistake. So, in a way, it does still deserve the title of ‘Secret Lagoon’!
One of the ways not to miss the lagoon is, of course, to take Secret Lagoon Iceland tour. There are lots of good tours you can do. Here are a few options.
If you prefer to hire a car in Iceland as we did and do a self-drive tour, here is everything you need to know about visiting the Secret Lagoon Iceland.
Where is the Secret Lagoon Iceland?
The Secret Lagoon is conveniently located on the famous Golden Circle. This is the road that forms a loop of about 250 km (150 miles)long. From Reykjavik you pass through Thingvellir National Park to Geysir Hot Springs and Gullfoss (one of the most famous waterfalls in Iceland) and down to the Secret Lagoon along to Sellfoss and back to Reykjavik.
If you only have a weekend in Iceland, this is a great route to take as you can do it in one day and see lots of sights.
We had 6 days in Iceland so we managed to head down to Vik from the Secret Lagoon and see Reynisfjara (Black Sand Beach), Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss (two of the most famous waterfalls in Iceland). We also made it to Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon and Diamond Beach near Hof and the Snaefellsness Pensinsula. All of these places were amazing, just in case you are considering a longer trip.
How to find the Secret Lagoon
If you are approaching the Secret Lagoon from the north on Route 30, you need to look for a turn on the left. The road is called Hvammsvegur. If you reach a sharp left bend in the road at Fludir, then you have gone too far.
If you are approaching from the south on Route 30, you’ll reach a sharp right bend at Fludir. Go past the Icelandair Hotel on the left for about 200 metres and you’ll find a turn on the left. The road is called Hvammsvegur.
Secret Lagoon or Blue Lagoon?
Many people ask this question. It’s probably the thing we get asked the most (after they ask how expensive Iceland is). The Blue Lagoon is Iceland’s biggest tourist attraction after all. If you are debating the Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon, here are a few reasons why we think the Secret Lagoon is better. It is down to personal choice though because they are both very different.
The Secret Lagoon is much less busy
You can arrive in the morning and almost have the place to yourself which is virtually impossible at the Blue Lagoon.
The Secret Lagoon is cheaper than the Blue Lagoon
The secret Lagoon entry price is: Adult (3,000 Kr), Child under 14 (FREE)
The Blue Lagoon entry price is: Adult (6,990 Kr), Child under 14 (FREE with a paying adult)
The Secret Lagoon is more authentic than the Blue Lagoon
Not many people know this but the Blue Lagoon is not natural; it is man-made. The water in the Blue Lagoon may look amazing but it is run-off from a nearby (and very ugly) geothermal power plant. This put us right off!
The Secret Lagoon hot springs are completely natural – and this is what you come to Iceland for right?
Best time to visit the Secret Lagoon Iceland
We would suggest getting here as early as possible. The opening times in the winter are different to the summer and you need to keep an eye on their website for changes.
Friday to Sunday – 1pm to 7pm
Daily – 10 am to 8 pm
If you are visiting in the winter, you might like to try going in the evening for a chance of spotting the Northern Lights while bathing. How amazing would that be?!
Information about visiting the Iceland Secret Lagoon
- You need to book your ticket in advance
- You need to shower naked before entering the Secret Lagoon hot springs
- The Secret Lagoon water temperature is between 38 and 40 degrees Celsius. Don’t stay in it too long. Make sure to have breaks and if you feel light headed, you can sit on the edge to cool down.
- The lagoon is a little over 3 feet deep. Our 5 year old could not stand in it.
- There are swimming aids for children if they need them. You can help yourself.
- There are some VERY warm patches, particularly in the far left corner as you are entering the pool
- You can rent towels and swimsuits for a cost of 700 ISK
- You must only wear appropriate swimwear
Facilities at the Secret Lagoon
There is a large car park
The changing facilities are quite modern with lockers, hairdryers and changing cabins.
There is a small café with snacks and drinks.
Accommodation near the Secret Lagoon
You can check on Booking.com for more accommodation nearby.
Or there are some cute little places on Airbnb.