Swimming in the Blue Lagoon’s Steamy Water
Water Outflow Entering Lagoon through Volcanic Pumice Stone
Blue Lagoon’s Milky Blue Water within Black Volcanic Landscape
Green Moss-Covered Lava Field
We recently spent 10 days in Iceland – what a beautiful landscape! This tiny island is one of the top locations in the world for nature photography. It was voted Best in Travel in 2012 and 2013 by Lonely Planet. It was voted World’s Best Travel Destination in 2012 by National Geographic. It was also voted friendliest country to travelers. It is one of the “greenest” countries in the world because of its use of geothermal power – the air and water are crystal pure. Tourists can expect to see black sand beaches, glaciers, waterfalls, volcanoes, geysers, and boiling mud pots. Every town has its own geothermal-heated swimming pool. Whales are abundant in the waters offshore (activity peaks in June). It is one of the top places in the world for seabirds (half the world’s puffin population nests in this region May to June). Purebred Icelandic horses and sheep graze in the meadows. It is a photographer’s paradise!
Our first stop of the trip was the Blue Lagoon – the number one tourist destination in Iceland (near Reykjavik). The lagoon’s steamy blue water is popular among bathers for both recreational and therapeutic purposes. The water starts off in superheated form beside a lava flow over a mile below the surface. A geothermal power station vents it from the ground, and the steam is used to run turbines to generate electricity, and to provide heat for the municipal water system. The power station’s outflow of water is released into the Blue Lagoon. The water contains fine white silica silt that is used for spa treatments and beauty products, and is said to be especially beneficial to the skin. A soak in this 99 degree water is exactly what is needed after a long flight. The landscape’s colors are especially striking – milky blue water, black lava rocks, and green moss. Mosses account for half of all vegetation in Iceland. Many more posts are coming!