Turns Out Iceland's Blue Lagoon Is Not At All How It Looks On Instagram

If you follow travel influencers on social media and experience wanderlust every day over all of the vacations you’ll likely never take, like me, then you definitely know about Iceland’s famous picture-perfect Blue Lagoon. In case you don’t, it’s a geothermal spa and hotel that charges anywhere from $55 USD to snap basic photos for your Instagram feed then leave for a day pass to $1,000+ USD per night to soak in the benefits of its skin-nourishing, luxurious, milky blue water.

Welllll, Business Insider recently published an article showcasing the difference between the expectations and the reality of the location. Turns out, this dream destination is literally the opposite of a dream… and we’re NOT here for it.

When you visit the official Blue Lagoon Iceland Instagram account, you might get super jeal over a pretty girl standing shoulder deep in a lovely photo of the lagoon that looks something like this:[/embed]

A back shot in bright blue water that matches a bright blue sky is jackpot for an Insta thot like me. I’d kill for a photo like this. Do you know how many likes I’d get???

JK. I’m really not that desperate for likes. JK. I am.[/embed]

So, yeah. Look at that ~dreamy~ fog amidst that gorgeous sunset. SO photogenic. Not to mention, there aren’t too many people peeing in there blocking your way of getting the perfect Snapchat that will make all your friends back home cry at their desks.

Speaking of friends…[/embed]

IDK about you, but I’ve DMd several pics like this to my best friend and let that bitch know we’re hopping on the next plane out of here so we can take cute pics posing the same way as soon as we’re both not broke AF and can afford a vacation.[/embed]

Come on. This basically looks like you died and went to heaven. Okay, I already know I’m going to hell so that’s impossible, but if I wasn’t, then this is exactly what I’d think my entrance to heaven would look like.[/embed]

Imagine spending your entire life savings to sit in this fancy-ass hotel room that overlooks this amazing landscape that doesn’t show any sign of an industrial building for a week? Or booking this lavish spot for your honeymoon?

Only for you to actually spend your hard-earned money on a trip to Iceland and the Blue Lagoon to walk into something that looks like this?

…a public pool that’s overcrowded and surrounded by smog and industrial landscapes? Where’s the clear blue sky? And the bright blue water? Why is it so gloomy??

Are we f*cking kidding with this??? This is actually my nightmare. A giant breeding ground for bacteria, and the water isn’t even that blue. I’m scared. And what is that cube-shaped structure in the background??

And it’s not like you can even drown your fears at the bar because it’s flocked by clay-face-mask-wearing aliens who also want to drown their sorrows after spending lots of money to go there.

Why travel thousands of miles away for a drink in a crowded pool when I could enjoy a relaxing glass of wine in the shower? Why spend thousands of dollars to travel out of the country when I can go get catfished on Tinder for free?

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why I have trust issues. (Peep the McDonald’s cups in the background. Gross.)

Don’t get me wrong… I’d still go to the Blue Lagoon someone else paid for my ticket or if I had a ton of money to blow. You could definitely score really cool Insta-worthy photos there. It’s obviously been done before as you can see from all the photos of people who went and shared nice photos.

I guess you gotta hit this place at the right time when there aren’t 245,646,849 other visitors around so you can yell at your friend/significant other to capture the best possible angle of you that successfully hides the disappointing reality of the situation.

…or you can just throw a blue bath bomb in your tub and slap on a clay mask to recreate a staycation version of the Blue Lagoon experience, except it’s in the comfort of your own home and you didn’t have to hop on a plane or pay $1,000 for it! The Blue Lagoon is manmade anyway, so really, what’s the difference?

Images: @uftridelta, @bluelagoonis (4) / Instagram; Getty Images, Nick, marc falardeau, Dani Oliver / Flickr Creative Commons; Alla Laurent, Alexander Chizhenok (2) / Shutterstock

Morgan Mandriota
Morgan Mandriota
Morgan Mandriota is a New-York based writer and the founder of She writes about sex, relationships, health, travel, and other fun stuff for Betches, Bumble, Bustle, Cosmopolitan, Health, mindbodygreen, Tinder, Well+Good, and your other favorite websites. In her spare time, you can find her hiking, playing video games, chasing sunsets, traveling, or slathering CBD salve all over her aching body. Follow her on Instagram/Twitter @morganmandriota or visit