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2 nights in Iceland - Blue Lagoon or other options?

I arrive at KEF around 11 am in mid-May, and plan on heading to my hotel in Reykjavik and will spend the rest of the day hanging out in the city. The next morning, I am doing a Golden Circle tour with Iceland Horizon - they have told me that the tour will return to Reykjavik between 4-5 pm. My flight to Amsterdam leaves the next morning at 6 am, so I booked a room at the Aurora Star near KEF to make sure I get there on time.

Here's my question - I was thinking that it would be nice to go to Blue Lagoon that last evening, but was wondering about the logistics of getting there. I figured I would take Flybus or Gray Lines to the airport after the tour bus drops me off, and then head to the hotel, but is there a way to get to Blue Lagoon from either the airport or hotel? And is it worth the price and hassle of getting there and back?

The other option would be to stay in Reykjavik for the evening to hang out at one of the pools before heading back, but I'm worried about getting back to the airport hotel that late. It looks like Flybus's latest trip from the city is at 9 pm, but do they ever cancel? I'd hate to be stuck and have to take an expensive cab back.

Or last option - is there anything interesting to do it in the nearby towns, such as Keflavík? Thanks!

Posted by va from va
Alexandria, VA USA
365 posts

I haven't been to Iceland yet, but I looked at your hotel website, and they show excursions to the Blue Lagoon as an option. You can contact them and see if you could work something for your schedule. Also, it wouldn't hurt to see if your tour company makes stops at the airport/hotels, to save you the hassle of getting out to the airport. Your hotel was listing excursions around Iceland as options, so I thought your company may go your hotel as well. Just a thought.

Posted by Agnes
Washington DC Region, USA
4593 posts

Maybe you should consider going to the Blue Lagoon right after you arrive (provided you have no health issues because it may be too much to deal with jet lag/lack of sleep and hot springs at once). It would be more efficient that way as the Flybuses coordinate those trips (Blue Lagoon + Reykjavik) together and price it as a combo ticket. Reykjavik is a lively city even at night, so you can hang out well into the night and not worry about safety.

Also, you should know that there are several thermal pools right in Reykjavik and surrounding area that are not as famous/ touristy as the Blue Lagoon but may be just as satisfying, especially since you've got major time constraints. It may be a lot easier to get to a local one just using the designated bus (and a lot cheaper too) than trekking to the Blue Lagoon. There is a PDF list of all of them here:

No, there isn't much going on in the villages around the airport - they are really small villages. I would stay in Reykjavik. Flybuses are supposed to be coordinated with every flight leaving Keflavik, even early ones.

Posted by Mardee OP
Cincinnati, OH, USA
286 posts

@va from va, I did check the hotel website and did not see any excursions mentioned, other than links to other companies. I had thought about taking a bus transfer from the airport to Blue Lagoon, since the hotel is so close to the airport, but the hours just won't work for me.

@Agnes, thanks - I'm thinking that if I do the Blue Lagoon the same day I arrive, I will fall asleep in the water. My flight from Cincinnati leaves shortly after midnight and I don't sleep well on planes. But I really like the idea of checking out some other pools - I looked at your list and there are several nice ones in or near the city center - I think I might plan on doing that. I think, however, I will keep my reservation at the Aurora Star - at best, it will give me an extra hour of sleep in the morning. :)

Thanks to both of you for your help!!!

Posted by tchilman
10 posts

Funny you mentioned maybe falling asleep in the water, I did just that at the Myvatn Nature Baths. It was planned though as I had a little shallow spot on the edge of the shore, very relaxing. The Blue Lagoon is awesome, great one time experience for sure. I have heard good things about the smaller ones in the city. I visited a local type place in the Westfjords and they are fun too. Hand down though can't beat the Blue Lagoon for it's amenities.

Posted by stan
The Heartland USA
3133 posts

Just an FYI that the new Rick Steves Iceland guide is now available.

Posted by Agnes
Washington DC Region, USA
4593 posts

A guidebook on the entire country would be great for a regular (week or more) trip, but a bit overkill for 1.5 days which already look fully planned out and virtually no decisions left to be made. For those quick Iceland Air layovers (I've done one), I would hit the onsite tourist info center for any help if I needed it. They have excellent maps and resources. Iceland/ Reykjavik is extraordinarily tourist-oriented (they even asked me to fill out a very lengthy survey at the airport about their services) and really has top-notch infrastructure for tourists.

Posted by Mardee OP
Cincinnati, OH, USA
286 posts

I was able to get the new Iceland guidebook at the library - both print and Kindle. :) There are some good tips, but as Agnes mentioned, for a 2 day stay, it's probably not worth buying, which is why I'm glad I was able to borrow it!!! 😊

Posted by reinier28
30 posts

We did the Blue Lagoon in Sept 2017 and was worth every penny. We stayed at the Northern Lights Inn which is right next to the Blue Lagoon. Spendy but close to the airport as wel.