Dreamscapes Travel & Lifestyle

Winter/Spring 2023

Dreamscapes Travel & Lifestyle Magazine

Issue link: http://read.dreamscapes.ca/i/1492486

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Page 65 of 71

DREAMSCAPES WINTER/SPRING 2023 66 S teaming fumaroles dot the barren landscape all along the trail to Reykjadalur Hot Spring in south- western Iceland. The valley's volcanic activity makes it feel Mordor-esque like in the J.R.R. Tolkien classic, Lord of the Rings and my swim bag seems to take on the weight of Frodo's ring (a Tolkien character) as I trek uphill for four kilometres. After an hour, the geothermal river appears, sided by raised wooden boardwalks and partitioned changing areas. Toque-wearing bathers cluster in the warm water; segments of the creek have been partially dammed with rocks to create deeper pools for soaking. My husband and I quickly don our swimsuits and get into the piping water. This blissful soak is more than worth the effort to get here. Not only are we tapping into one of Iceland's geolog- ical marvels, but we're also participating in a cultural tradition: bathing. Icelanders have been taking the waters since at least the 12 th century. They seek the circulatory and anti-inflammatory health benefits of the hot mineral water along with its social perks—natural springs and public pools are places for the community to gather, con- nect and relax. The best part? Hot springs hopping is just one wellness activity in the land of fire and ice. I S L A N D W E L L N E S S F E A T U R E Northern Lights INSIDER TIP Visit in April. It's one of Iceland's least busy months and there's still a good chance to see the Northern Lights. When it comes to wellness, Iceland wows in the off-season BY LISA KADANE Chasing waterfalls, hot springs and the

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