At the last minute we decided that we couldn't dismiss the Blue Lagoon as overrated without actually trying it for ourselves, so we booked in at both.
|Fontana - a good alternative?|
It turned out that we loved both the Blue Lagoon and Laugarvatn Fontana for completely different reasons because, other than them both being spas, they are very different places.
|Bad hair, don't care!|
The location was ideal for us, we drove our Lagoon Car Rental hire car from Keflavik airport, had a nice stop at the Blue Lagoon, before driving off to Reykjavik. Like most of the sights in Iceland, it would be really annoying to get to if you didn't have a car, but as long as you do have a car it's not a problem, simply plan it into your arrival/departure from Iceland.
[Read more: Renting a Car in Iceland - Lagoon Car Rental Review ]
Should you upgrade?
If you don't have a towel or a bottle of water with you, the upgrade is 100% worth it, but if you have those things with you anyway, it's probably not worth the 15 extra Euros.
We had such a perfect afternoon here it's hard to find anything we didn't like. As I said, the other people, our hair and the price didn't bother us.
I guess the only thing that makes it less cool is the fact that the water isn't natural, especially as there are so many natural pools in Iceland.
Also because of the heat of the water and the coldness outside, the steam coming off the water made it hard to make nice videos and photos.. I'm being really picky now. Okay let's move on:
We actually made a video all about our time at the Blue Lagoon which you can view here:
Before we'd visited either spa, Laugarvatn Fontana appealed to us a lot more - located on the Golden Circle, it is still a bit undiscovered and it also incorporates natural parts of Iceland.
But what was it like?
Laugarvatn Fontana is composed of a series of interconnected outdoor mineral baths and steam rooms. These are built over a natural hot spring and complement each other to create a healthy, natural and fairly unique experience.
There were lots of different saunas to try out and because there weren't many people there, we had a sauna or two to ourselves.
At 30 Euros = £26 = $34 Fontana is a lot cheaper than the Blue Lagoon, though like the Blue Lagoon this price does not include towel hire.
By far my favourite part of Laugarvatn Fontana was the fact that you can actually take a dip in the freezing Laugarvatn lake. This feels so primal, so typically Icelandic and has to be done (before quickly running back into the 40 degree pool).
I really liked this part of Fontana, it felt like we were getting back to nature and connecting with the 'Icelandic spirit'. It was also great knowing that because of health and safety (slipping, freezing etc), a similar type of thing would probably not have been allowed in the UK.
Plus it was lovely to have a view of the lake and surrounding mountains whilst relaxing in the pools.
What I found the worst though were the showers! Before you go into spas in Iceland you are required to have a shower without your bathing suit/bikini on. In the Blue Lagoon this is fine as they have (recently) brought in private cubicles aka showers with doors for privacy.
In Fontana there is a big communal shower for the women (no private cubicles), which is awkward, but made worse by the fact that there was also a (female) member of staff waiting next to the showers to check you strip off. I'm British, prudish and immature so I wasn't comfortable with that!
Of course this won't be a deal-breaker for most ladies, and Tanbay said in the men's room there was no 'guard'. Okay let's move on..
Overall we loved our time at Fontana and have made a vlog all about it!
We can totally understand why the Blue Lagoon has become the unofficial symbol of Iceland - the beautiful scenery both inside and outside the pool, the bars in the pool, the iconic Icelandic photos you can take there, pretty much everything was excellent. Overall, we were very impressed.
But Laugarvatn Fontana still wins lots of points for utilising a natural site and allowing you to go into the freezing lake. We also preferred its location to the Blue Lagoon's.
All in all, I would actually recommend that you go to both the Blue Lagoon AND Fontana. They are so different and therefore the advantages vary so you won't regret it.
But what do you think? Which would you rather go to? Or perhaps you've been to both and think that there's a clear winner - let us know in the comments!
For more information on the Blue Lagoon find them on their website, on Facebook and on TripAdvisor. For Laugarvatn Fontana find them on their website, on Facebook and on TripAdvisor. And for more about the Travelling Weasels find us on Facebook and Instagram!
Disclaimer: Travelling Weasels were offered a complimentary upgrade to the Blue Lagoon and complimentary entry into Fontana in return for honest reviews. As always all opinions are our own.
We're Laura and Tanbay, a British/German couple who have successfully weaselled our way out of the rat-race and want you to do the same! We also want to make it clear that we sometimes use “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we use personally and believe will add value to our readers.