The Hrunalaug baths were built by the current landowner’s great grandfather for private use. They have recently come under threat due to an increasing number of guests, also during the night - which is a common problem for most unsupervised baths in Iceland. The pool’s location and the surrounding landscape make it difficult to close the area and manage access to the pool.
Cities and towns
UNESCO global geoparks
Sand / Gravel
Rocks / Cliffs
River / Ocean
Difficulty controlling access
Only an hour’s drive from Reykjavík, the 130 year old Hrunalaug pool, which is a private property, has endured a sudden storm of tourists. The brusque increase in the number of visitors has created a challenge of limiting access and preventing damage to the land, making it necessary to fence off or close the area. For several years, landowners have struggled with night traffic, littering and vandalism in this sensitive area, resulting in damages to the pool. Previously, the pool was only used by the locals, but now, the landowners consider themselves lucky if they can enjoy their pool in peace.
Maintenance using traditional methods
The landowners have no intention of developing the pool as a tourist attraction. Therefore, all construction has been carried out with the purpose of preserving and protecting the area, with the aim of leaving it as close to its original state as possible. The work undertaken includes construction of paths and repairs and rebuilding of a stone wall and an old sheep round-up - réttir in Icelandic. Restoration of the traditional stonework and construction of the path to the pool were carried out by the same craftsmen, ensuring consistency in the traditional appearance of the area.
Hrunalaug, Flúðir, S-Iceland
N64° 8’ 2.64″ W20° 15’ 25.76″
Local materials, concrete, wood, stone walls with turf on top
ISK 15,300,000 in the period 2017 to 2020 from the Tourist Site Protection Fund