Drangsnes Hot Tubs Travel Guide
Drangsnes hot tubs are man-made geothermal pools by the sea located in Drangsnes village in Westfjords, Iceland.
Visitors may take a dip in Drangsnes hot tubs and explore other wondrous attractions in the Westfjords by booking self-drive tours, such as this 8-day road trip.
The Drangsnes hot tubs are one of the main attractions at Drangsnes, a small fishing village in the eastern part of the Westfjords region with a population of less than a hundred people. The hot tubs are a great place to experience the Icelandic tradition of geothermal bathing away from the crowds and close to the sea.
Photo from Wikimedia, Creative Commons, by Bromr. No edits made.
Features of the Drangsnes Hot Tubs
The Drangsnes hot tubs are built along the shoreline between the ocean and a cliff road. This area is remote, and there is no landmark apart from the small white changing house across the street.
The bathing spot consists of three pools filled with water of varying temperatures from cool to medium to hot and fed by a naturally heated spring below the surface.
Geothermal hot water was first discovered in Drangsnes in 1997. The discovery led to the construction of the pools by locals, who drilled a borehole into the ground to harness the hot water.
They then built the hot tubs in their strategic spot next to the sea.
Lucky travelers may even spot a whale during their visit or the famous northern lights in wintertime.
There are changing rooms and showers across the street, so visitors can change into their swimwear before going into the pools. Showering before geothermal bathing is essential in Iceland.
Folklore of the Drangsnes Hot Tubs
Iceland is known for having such a rich collection of folklore. One of the famous stories that have been passed down from generation to generation is about the pillar of rocks at Drangsnes.
Icelanders believe it was once one of the three trolls who wanted to separate the Westfjords from the rest of Iceland.
Legend has it that trolls were giant creatures who first inhabited Iceland before the first settlement. After the arrival of the Vikings, three trolls wanted to keep a portion of the land as troll country, separated from the Vikings' rule.
They planned to disconnect the Westfjords region from the mainland by digging a channel in the middle. Fortunately, the plan failed when the three trolls got caught by the first rays of the sun and turned into stones.
However, one of the trolls managed to slam her shovel down angrily before the sun's rays caught her, breaking off a piece of land.
This piece of land is known today as Grimsey Island in Drangsnes.
The troll herself then got turned into a pillar of rocks. This rock formation is known in Icelandic as "drangur," where the village of Drangsnes got its name.
Other Notable Places Near the Drangsnes Hot Tubs
Grimsey island and Drangur rocks, the two spots mentioned above, are the two other attractions in Drangsnes besides the hot tubs. Tourists mainly visit these sites for their unique form and the legends surrounding them.
The big dyke known as Drangur lies at Malahorn near the hot tubs and draws visitors' attention because of its otherwordly appearance, which is excellent for photographs.
The other one, Grimsey island, is considered the Pearl of Steingrimsfjordur fjord and is teeming with birdlife. Many people come to this part of Drangsnes to watch puffins and other species of seabirds.
It's important to note that this island is not the same Grimsey island, located off the north coast of Iceland, across the Arctic Circle.
How to Get to the Drangsnes Hot Tubs
Drangsnes town lies approximately 163 miles (263 kilometers) from Reykjavik City.
To get there, head northwest on Vonarstraeti, then turn left onto Sudurgata. Once you reach the roundabout, take the third exit to continue driving onto Route 49, then drive onto Vesturlandsvegur/Thjodvegur 1.
At the next roundabout, take the second exit and stay on Vesturlandsvegur/Thjodvegur 1. You will then encounter six roundabouts, but just continue taking the exit leading to Vesturlandsvegur/Thjodvegur 1.
On the seventh roundabout, take the second exit and continue driving on Thjodvegur 1. Drive onto Hvalfjardargong until the next roundabout, where you must take the first exit onto Thjodvegur.
Next, turn right onto Borgarbraut, then take the first exit at the roundabout onto Thjodvegur. Turn left onto Vestfjardavegur and continue driving for some time. Next, turn right onto Route 61, then another right onto Strandavegur.
From here, continue driving until Drangsnesvegur. This road should lead you to Drangsnes town, where the hot tubs are located.