How to go to a pool in Reykjavik Iceland #ESRA15

I know that sounds stupid. But, to anyone from North America, it’s going to catch you off guard. I took the plunge first so you won’t be as dumbstruck as I was. Note: I did not die in the process.

  1. Bring your bathing suit and towel. If you forgot yours, you can rent both at the pool. You can also borrow a towel from your hotel.
  2. Arrive at the pool and pay the fee. (Around 650 which for me was $6.50) You will be given a ticket or a bracelet that you scan in order to get in.
  3. There is a change room for females and separate one for males. Have no fear.
  4. Leave your shoes on the rack which is either outside the change room or immediately inside. They will be there when you get back after swimming.
  5. Walk past any naked people and find an empty locker. Take the key from the lock and put the elastic band around your wrist.
  6. Strip naked. (In your head, pretend you do this all the time and it’s no big deal.) Take your towel and swimsuit to the shower area. NO ONE is looking at you. They’re busy with whatever they’re doing.
  7. Put your towel and suit on a nearby rack with everyone else’s towel.
  8. Shower naked with the liquid soap provided. Many people bring their own soap. Wash all of you with soap. WASH, not just a quick dip.
  9. Put on your swimsuit. (Good luck with that. Wet body + dry suit = gymnastics.) Leave your towel there. It will be there when you return.
  10. Go out into the pool area. Swim, get hot, swim, chat people up, swim, get hot.
  11. When you’re done, go back inside.
  12. Shower with or without your suit but you might as well…..
  13. strip naked. Dry off. You are not allowed back at the lockers until you are completely dry and won’t drip on the floor.
  14. If you’re lucky, there’s a bathing suit spinner. Spin your suit dry.
  15. While naked, carry your suit and towel back to your locker.
  16. Get dressed.
  17. Get your shoes.
  18. Return your wristband if you were given one.
  19. Leave with fond memories of the swim and be proud that you got naked in public and no one died in the process.

There’s a lot of naked going on there but the important part to remember is that this is how it’s always done. No one’s looking at you. No one cares about you. In fact, there may only be a couple of other people in the change room at the same time as you anyways. Just resign to the nakedness. The pool and hot tubs are worth it. 🙂

I managed to get to two pools:

  • Laugardalslaug: A+ outdoor pool. Really fun slide. Every ADULT should go on the slide. I promise you’ll squeal. Several hot tubs of different temperatures. Really nice lane pool. Lots of fun toys for the kiddies who get a separate play area from the adults. Good choice if this is the only one you go to. They use a great electronic wristband locker system.
  • Vesturbaejarlaug: B+ outdoor pool. Standard lane pool plus hot tubs. It’s smaller and feels more cozy. They use a physical key for the lockers. Convenient but not as spiffy techie as the previous pool.

Questions? Ask away 🙂

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