The Vök Baths is a geothermal spa located in east Iceland. It has been open since July 1st, 2019.
Vök Baths is the largest spa in east Iceland, sitting on the edge of Lake Urriðavatn; what makes the destination particularly unique is that the facilities are incorporated into this feature. It has two pools which are level with the lake, hot pools which overlook it, and a cold tunnel that leads into it.
The baths also boast an on-site sauna, a bar in one of the pools, and a Tea Bar which uses Icelandic herbs and spring water to produce tisane tea. There are indoor changing facilities with private showers, and a reception where you can rent swimsuits and towels.
The site also has a restaurant called Soups & Bistro, which sells seasonal soups and dishes utilising fresh, local ingredients.
Although the waters of the Vök Baths are geothermally heated, they are not filled with minerals such as sulfur and silica; this means that the spa does not have the eggy smell that hovers over many Icelandic pools. In fact, considering the water of Lake Urriðavatn emerges from a spring and flows constantly through the baths, it is actually drinkable.
Admission is 5,000 ISK for adults, 2,900 ISK for students and seniors, 1,800 for those six to sixteen, and free for children under six. This includes a free tisane tea at the infusion bar. For 900 ISK more, you can upgrade to a Comfort ticket, which allows you to enjoy a drink while in the pools, and for 3,500 ISK more, you can book a Premium ticket, which also grants you the chance to taste some of the restaurant's dishes.
The Vök Baths are open from 11:00 to 23:00 from May 1st to August 31st, and from 12:00 to 10:00 the rest of the year; if travelling to Iceland in winter, this provides you with a decent chance to bathe under the Northern Lights.
The Vök Baths are conveniently close to the largest town in east Iceland, often nicknamed ‘the Capital of the East’, Egilsstaðir. To reach the baths from this settlement, travel north along Route 1 (the road that encircles Iceland) across Lake Lagarfljót, and turn right onto Route 925. Urriðavatn will materialise on the left, and you will find the baths shortly after.
Lagarfljót and Urriðavatn are two beautiful attractions that can be enjoyed before or after a visit to the bath. The former lake is particularly notable, due to its size, fishing opportunities and folklore; it is said that a mythical wyrm resides in its mysterious waters. Other attractions near the Vök Baths include the magnificent East Fjords and Iceland’s largest forest, Hallormsstaðaskógar.
If you are not travelling to east Iceland but wish to enjoy a luxury geothermal experience, there are similar spas around the rest of the country. The most famous of these are the Blue Lagoon, on the Reykjanes Peninsula; the Mývatn Nature Baths, in north Iceland; and the Krauma Spa in west Iceland.