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Blue Lagoon
Where else but in geologically-active Iceland would the waste product of a power station become a major tourist attraction! The silky, milky blue waters of this vast outside pool are all natural; the mineral-rich seawater was originally superheated deep below your feet, converted into energy in Svartsengi power station, then poured into the pool at a comfortable 40 degrees C.
So much for the science; at the Blue Lagoon, bathing is believing. The curiously silky water is never more than five feet deep, and you don't even need to swim, just power your way by digging your toes into the cushioning white silica mud on the bottom. During the daylight, you can appreciate the strangeness of this place. Set in a harsh volcanic landscape, jagged lava flows barely rounded by time, you feel you are at the very dawn of time, a mere dot in the primeval soup.
The Blue Lagoon becomes even more amazing in the crisp chill and darkness of an Iceland winter, when wet skin crackles in the cold and the steam swirls around in enveloping, confusing clouds.
However, after a shower and restorative drink or ice cream at the end of your swim, skin softly glowing after the restorative effects of the water's minerals and algae, you realise the Blue Lagoon shows what Iceland does best; combining raw nature with creature comforts!
© 2009 Kirsty Young
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