Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon: Which One is Best for You?

Deciding between Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon? There are many things to consider when choosing which hot spring to visit in Iceland.

Hot Springs are an essential part of Icelandic culture, and is worth visiting when in Iceland. Whether you are looking for a luxury experience like the Blue Lagoon or a hidden gem like Secret Lagoon, choosing one of these hot springs is sure to be a highlight of any trip to Iceland.

We visited both the Blue Lagoon and Secret Lagoon, and both were incredible in their own way. In this post I’ve detailed a comprehensive review of the pros and cons of both to help you decide if Secret Lagoon or Blue Lagoon is best for you.

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Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon in Iceland: A Quick Comparison

Don’t have time to read this whole post? Here is a short comparison of the Blue Lagoon vs Secret Lagoon:

Visit the Blue Lagoon if:
✔️ It is your first time in Iceland
✔️ You want to see the iconic Blue Lagoon
✔️ You want spa services like face masks or in water massages
✔️ You are visiting for a honeymoon or special event and want to experience luxury at the Blue Lagoon Retreat Spa.

🇮🇸 Click Here to Book Tickets for the Blue Lagoon

Visit Secret Lagoon if:
✔️ You are traveling to Iceland on a budget
✔️ You want to experience a natural hot spring
✔️ Are exploring Iceland’s Golden Circle
✔️ You want to avoid crowds
✔️ Want to visit a serene, more authentic hot spring

🇮🇸 Click Here to Book Tickets to Secret Lagoon

The Blue Lagoon in Iceland

Full view of the Blue Lagoon and its milky blue waters against the black rocks and moss covered mountains in the background.

📍 Location: Norðurljósavegur 9, 240 Grindavík I 🎫 Book Tickets Here

The Blue Lagoon has been made world famous and is one of Iceland’s top attractions. It is known for its beautiful blue waters that are rich with minerals, and is believed to offer skincare nourishment.

The Blue Lagoon is located in a lava field near Grindavík, only 23km from the Keflavík International Airport and 49km from Reykjavik. The convenient location makes it one of the easiest lagoons to access.

Pros of Visiting the Blue Lagoon

✅ Iconic Place in Iceland

Lets face it, the Blue Lagoon has become an iconic place in Iceland. For first time visitors to Iceland, the Blue Lagoon is worth visiting.

The Blue Lagoon became popular for a reason, and that reason us that it is an incredibly beautiful and relaxing place to visit.

The milky blue waters of the Blue Lagoon with one of the small buildings and a walking bridge in the background.

The Blue Lagoon is also famous for its health benefits. Soaking in the mineral rich waters of the Blue Lagoon has many great skin nourishment benefits.

While there are many hot springs and lagoons throughout Iceland, and you may enjoy some more than the Blue Lagoon, it is still worth visiting the Blue Lagoon at least once.

👉 Click Here to Check Availability and Book Blue Lagoon Tickets

✅ Amenities

There are many amenities available at the Blue Lagoon. The Blue Lagoon offers two different day packages: Comfort and Premium, and each one has different inclusions.

Comfort includes an entrance ticket, Silica Mud Mask, use of a towel, and 1 drink ticket. Premium includes everything in the comfort package, plus 2 additional masks of your choice, a bathrobe, and a glass of sparkling wine if dining at the Lava Restaurant.

The Blue Lagoon also features the Lava restaurant, which is open from 11:30 am to 9 pm. For lunch until 4 pm, you can dine in your swimsuit and bathrobe.

Another highlight of the amenities available at the Blue Lagoon is that they have private showers available. For us, Americans, this is definitely a highlighted amenity!

✅ Luxury Experiences: The Retreat at Blue Lagoon

If you are visiting Iceland for a honeymoon, anniversary, birthday, or other special event, I highly recommend checking out the Retreat at Blue Lagoon.

The Retreat at Blue Lagoon is a separate, more private area of the Blue Lagoon that provides a full spa experience. This is the best way to avoid the crowds and experience a luxurious and relaxing day at the Blue Lagoon.

The Retreat Spa includes 5 hour exclusive access to the Retreat Spa, Retreat Lagoon, Blue Lagoon, a private changing room, skincare amenities, a drink of your choice, and the Blue Lagoon Ritual.

For the ultimate luxurious spa experience, there is no competing with the Blue Lagoon Retreat Spa.

Click Here to Check Availability and Book Tickets for Blue Lagoon’s Luxury Retreat Spa

The blue waters of the Blue Lagoon

✅ Beautiful Atmosphere

The Blue Lagoon has a beautiful atmosphere that is incredibly unique. The light blue waters contrast against the black rocks, making it a scenic place to relax.

While the Blue Lagoon can be crowded, it is also very large in size which makes it possible to spread out from other people to enjoy the beauty of the lagoon.

The Blue Lagoon in winter is especially beautiful, surrounded by glistening snow and with much fewer crowds.

A small walking bridge going over the beautiful blue waters of the Blue Lagoon.

✅ Located Near the Airport

The Blue Lagoon is located only 23km from the Keflavík International Airport. The convenient location makes it a perfect option to relax in either the day you arrive or the day before you leave.

We personally like to visit the Blue Lagoon the day before our flight leaves Iceland. After an adventurous trip exploring Iceland, there is no better way to fully relax and rejuvenate than soaking in the Blue Lagoon on the last day of your trip.

Many people also like to go straight to the Blue Lagoon after arriving to relax after a long flight before they can check in to their hotel.

There are airport transfers between the Blue Lagoon and Keflavík International Airport, making it easy to get there. If you are renting a car, the Blue Lagoon has free parking. You can also book Blue Lagoon tickets with transfers from Reykjavik.

The Blue Lagoon Iceland sign outside the front of the Blue Lagoon.

Cons of Visiting the Blue Lagoon

🚫 Cost

The Blue Lagoon is one of the most expensive hot springs in Iceland. Ticket prices can vary based on the entry time, day, and season.

The lowest prices start at ISK 8990, which around $65 USD. However, that low price is typically only offered right before closing time on weekdays, which isn’t really worth it. To go earlier in the day or on a weekend, you will likely pay over $100 USD for the basic ticket.

A small crowd waiting at the drink line in the Blue Lagoon

🚫 Crowds

As one of the most visited attractions in Iceland, the Blue Lagoon does get crowded. In fact, over 700,000 people visit the Blue Lagoon each year, that is a lot of people!

The Blue Lagoon is the busiest during the hours of 11am until 3pm, so to avoid the crowds you’ll want to get there first thing in the morning or go in the evening. The Blue Lagoon is also much more crowded during Iceland’s popular summer season.

Due to the immense popularity of the Blue Lagoon, it is essential to book tickets in advance as they do sell out.

🚫 Destroys Hair

The Blue Lagoon can destroy your hair for several weeks. If you submerse your hair in the water the minerals will cause it to be brittle for several weeks. While the changes are not permanent, it can be an annoyance and difficult to fix quickly.

The best way to avoid this is to not put your hair underwater at the Blue Lagoon, by putting it in a high bun.

Blue Lagoon main building behind the Blue Lagoon waters.

🚫 Not a Natural Hot Spring

The Blue Lagoon is not a natural hot spring, and instead is man-made. Originally, it first started in 1976 as geothermal seawater run off that came from the Svartsengi Geothermal Resource Park. In the 1980’s people began to bathe in these warm waters and reported skincare benefits.

Today, the Blue Lagoon is a man-made structure that encompasses geothermal seawater with silica, creating the relaxing waters. The water is still heated via geothermal energy from the Svartsengi Geothermal Resource Park.

Two people standing outside the front of the Blue Lagoon.

So, Is Blue Lagoon Worth It?

The Blue Lagoon is worth visiting at least once. While the Blue Lagoon can be overhyped, crowded, and expensive, it is also an iconic experience to have in Iceland. The Blue Lagoon is incredibly beautiful and relaxing, even with the crowds. Soaking in the Blue Lagoon also has many health benefits, especially for skin nourishment.

Additionally, if you are visiting Iceland for a honeymoon or special event, the Blue Lagoon offers one of the best luxury experiences at the Blue Lagoon Retreat Spa.

Secret Lagoon in Iceland

Secret Lagoon with people relaxing with noodles in the hot springs.

📍 Location: Hvammsvegur, 845 Flúðir I 🎫 Book Tickets Here

Secret Lagoon is a natural hot spring found along Iceland’s Golden Circle route. It is an incredibly scenic place, and feels very serene and relaxing. The Lagoon is much less crowded compared to more popular places like the Blue Lagoon.

The Secret Lagoon, which is also called Gamla Laugin, is a historically significant site in Iceland as it is the country’s oldest natural swimming pool. It was originally made in 1891 at Hverahólmi, a geothermal area near Flúðir. In 2014, the site went under a revitalization and opened up as Secret Lagoon.

Pros of Visiting Secret Lagoon

✅ Cost

The cost of visiting Secret Lagoon is much cheaper than Blue Lagoon. This makes visiting Secret Lagoon a fantastic choice for anyone visiting Iceland on a budget.

The price for Secret Lagoon is 3300 ISK (about $24 USD). Compared to the Blue Lagoon where you will likely pay over $100 USD this is so much cheaper!

Click Here to Book Tickets for Secret Lagoon

Two people swimming in the Secret Lagoon.

✅ Fewer Crowds

While Secret Lagoon isn’t a total secret, it sure is less crowded compared to the Blue Lagoon. Typically the hours of 10 am to 3 pm will see the most crowds, but it is still much less crowded than other lagoons.

Even with fewer crowds, it is still recommended to book tickets in advance.

✅ Natural Hot Spring

Secret Lagoon is a natural hot spring, heated by the geothermal area near Flúðir. It is the perfect natural hot spring to visit for a serene and relaxing setting.

Secret Lagoon’s waters also flow continuously keeping the hot spring clean and refreshing. The water is also filled with rich minerals such as sulfur.

A river surrounded by greenery and blooming Lupine flowers. One of the natural surroundings around Secret Lagoon

✅ Hot Water

The water at Secret Lagoon is geothermally heated and retains a warm temperature of 38-40 Celsius (100-104 F) all year round. It is the perfect temperature to fully relax your muscles and float around with a pool noodle.

✅ Located in the Golden Circle

Secret Lagoon is near Iceland’s Golden Circle, which is a popular driving route that is home to many highlights such as Gullfoss Waterfall, Geysir, Thingvellir National Park, and more.

The convenient location makes Secret Lagoon a perfect addition to any Golden Circle itinerary. In fact, one of the best times to visit the Secret Lagoon is at the end of a busy day exploring the Golden Circle.

Cons of Visiting Secret Lagoon

🚫 Small Size

The Secret Lagoon is much smaller than the Blue Lagoon. The Secret Lagoon is the size of a large swimming pool rather than a wide spread lagoon. While the lagoon is typically far less crowded, it could be more difficult to spread out if a big group comes in.

🚫 Father Away from Reykjavik

Secret Lagoon is located about 105km east of Reykjavik. If you have a car, getting to the Secret Lagoon is no problem as it is an easy drive in good weather.

However if you don’t plan to rent a car, the only way to get to Secret Lagoon is by taking a Golden Circle Tour such as this one. There isn’t public transportation available between Secret Lagoon and Reykjavik, like there is with Blue Lagoon.

Click Here to Book a Golden Circle and Secret Lagoon Tour from Reykjavik

Icelandic beer that was bought from Secret Lagoon's snack bar and is being held in the Secret Lagoon Hot Springs.

🚫 Fewer Amenities

There are fewer amenities at Secret Lagoon compared to Blue Lagoon. Secret Lagoon does have some swimming noodles, and also has a small snack bar that serves drinks.

There are no spa services or face masks available. Admission also does not include a towel, but you can rent one for 800 ISK (about $5 USD).

🚫 No Private Showers

The Secret Lagoon provides a men’s and women’s changing area with public showers and lockers. Taking a shower is required before entering any hot spring or lagoon, as this keeps the hot springs clean.

However, at Secret Lagoon there are only public showers available, which can be uncomfortable for some cultures (like us Americans). Keep in mind that all you need to do is a quick shower, so it really isn’t that bad!

A view of Secret Lagoon

So, Is Secret Lagoon Worth It?

Secret Lagoon is absolutely worth it! Secret Lagoon is a natural hot spring that is the perfect place to relax in the warm geothermal waters. It is in a serene setting filled with natural beauty and is far less crowded than the Blue Lagoon. Secret Lagoon is also convenient to visit when exploring the sites of Iceland’s Golden Circle.

While you won’t need a whole day at Secret Lagoon, it is the perfect way to spend an hour or two relaxing after exploring the Golden Circle. I would 100% visit Secret Lagoon every time I go to Iceland.

FAQ: Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon

Is Secret Lagoon or Blue Lagoon better?

Blue Lagoon is better for first time visitors to Iceland that want to see the iconic Icelandic landmark. Blue Lagoon is also better for anyone looking for a luxury or spa experience. Secret Lagoon is better for those that want to experience a beautiful, natural hot spring. Secret Lagoon is also the best option for travelers on a budget.

Is Blue Lagoon same as Secret Lagoon Iceland?

No. Blue Lagoon is a large, man-made lagoon filled with warm, mineral rich waters. Blue Lagoon is similar to a spa experience, while Secret Lagoon is a natural geothermal pool.

Is The Secret Lagoon worth going to?

Secret Lagoon is absolutely worth visiting. This natural geothermal pool is open year round and has warm temperatures of 30-40°C. It is the perfect Icelandic hot spring to relax in and enjoy the serene natural surroundings.

A side by side comparison of the Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon. On the left is a photo of the Secret Lagoon and on the right is the Blue Lagoon.

The Wrap Up: Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon

There are both pros and cons to visiting Secret Lagoon vs Blue Lagoon. From the iconic, mineral rich waters of the luxurious Blue Lagoon to the natural beauty Secret Lagoon, you are sure to love soaking in Iceland’s hot springs.

The Blue Lagoon is a beautiful place in Iceland, and offers a spa like experience soaking in the warm mineral rich waters. However, it can also be crowded and expensive.

On the other hand, Secret Lagoon is a serene, natural hot spring that is a perfect place to relax. While there are less crowds, it is also smaller and with fewer amenities than the Blue Lagoon.

So, whether you choose to visit Secret Lagoon or Blue Lagoon, you are sure to have an incredible time visiting Iceland’s beautiful hot springs.

Looking to visit more of Iceland? Check out these related posts:
The Best South Iceland Waterfalls
Is Iceland Worth Visiting?

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