Iceland: The ultimate health and wellness destination

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With Iceland’s wide expanses, fresh clean air, and naturally healthy cuisine, health and well-being already take a central role in the daily lives of Icelandic locals.

Famous for its large number of spas, hot springs and geothermal pools, Iceland is also known for its healthy diet, full of the freshest fish and plenty of homemade, lightly processed foods. Its drinking water – known as the cleanest drinking water on the planet – can be drunk directly from rivers and streams. It’s no wonder that Icelandic tourism grew by 400% between 2010 and 2018, something which looks set to continue to rise post-covid.

We’ve picked some of our unmissable sights and activities to build into your itinerary when planning your next trip to Iceland with Icelandair.

Hot springs and geothermal pools

The mineral-rich geothermal water of Iceland has done much to make cold winters not just bearable, but pleasurable. In fact, soaking in pools of hot water has been known to Icelanders since Viking times and is deeply rooted in the culture. Many experts claim it is intrinsically linked to the well-being of Icelanders.

Visitors can join the locals in their favourite pastime: relaxing in warm water all over the country. Soak spots are found in fantastically varied places, from small natural hot springs in remote fields to large, well-maintained swimming pools in virtually every village in Iceland. New to the scene are a growing number of deluxe lagoons and spa experiences, tapping into local nature to offer tourists a bathing experience to remember (amid lava fields, by a lakeshore or fjord-edge, atop a cliff with a sea view, and so on).

If you’re bathing in winter and stay after darkness falls, you might catch a glimpse of the captivating Northern Lights, so don’t forget your camera!

Laugarvatn Fontana Spa

Laugarvatn Fontana Spa is a beloved, lesser-known attraction on the Golden Circle route. The lakeside spa complex is an invigorating site where you can enjoy the healing powers of geothermal waters, soak in hot pools, and listen to the bubbling hot spring in the steam rooms.

For the brave, take a cooling dip in the refreshing Laugarvatn lake and understand for yourself why Iceland is known as the land of fire and ice! This spa also features a unique geothermal rye bread ‘bakery’, whereby bread is baked by the lakeshore, using underground geothermal heat. The bread is a must-taste, served warm from the ground with Icelandic butter.

Vök Baths

Vök Baths, only a few kilometers outside the town of Egilsstaðir in East Iceland, is a new designer bathing complex that’s as relaxing as it is photogenic. The natural hot springs which bubble away deep under lake Urriðavatn fill two floating pools set in the lake waters, reached by a short walkway from the main complex.

Vök is the Icelandic word for “hole in the ice”, and the baths are named after these mysterious patches that appear on the lake’s icy surface in winter. The floating pools, shaped like the ice-free patches themselves, float on the lake’s surface.

Mývatn Nature Baths

In North Iceland, Mývatn Nature Baths get their geothermally heated water from the nearby Bjarnarflag power station. The water contains impressive amounts of alkaline, sulphur, and rich minerals which can assist with healing medical conditions including asthma, skin issues, and respiratory problems. These baths look similar to the famous Blue Lagoon, but they’re lesser-known and more cost-effective to visit.

Jökulsárlón Glacial Lagoon

An iconic lagoon and known as Iceland’s deepest lake, Jökulsárlón can be found in the Southeast of Iceland. The area is filled with breath-taking views of icebergs, seals swimming by the shore, and wild birds flocking. Plus, it’s a short walking distance from Diamond Beach, a black sand beach where visitors can watch glittering icebergs drift into the Atlantic Ocean.

Unlike other places on this list, Jökulsárlón and Diamond Beach aren’t places for rejuvenating hot-water soaks. Instead, you can enjoy the lagoon’s meditative beauty on a boat trip, or in summer on a guided kayaking tour.

Icelandair’s Saga Premium

Wellness and relaxation don’t just start when you land in Iceland. With Icelandair’s Saga Premium cabin class, you’ll be able to unwind as soon as you arrive at the airport with complimentary lounge access at your departure location, and a full list of onboard benefits. Chill out in the Icelandair Saga Lounge at Keflavík Airport to finish your trip, with design inspired by the pure Icelandic nature and the warmth of our culture.

Icelandair offers a number of package holidays that include a selection of the locations listed, so should you want a ready-made trip, the Spa and Wellness packages are the place to head to

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