Excellent news for the prudes among us; getting naked in Reykjavik pools’ changing rooms just got a whole lot easier!

Steinþór Einarsson, office manager of the City of Reykjavik’s Sports and Leisure Department, has revealed Reykjavík’s pool complexes will now have the option for private changing and showering, with the exception of Vesturbæjarlaugin.

Designs for the new facilities have already been completed and construction will soon be underway, offering shy visitors an exemption from both public changing and public showering.

Photo from sundlaugar.is

People are uncomfortable showing their bodies for a number of reasons. Perhaps its issues with their self-esteem, or a religious belief. I, for one, have strange yet fascinating lumps on my back that I’m unwilling to let strangers see without paying.


See Also: Swimming Pool Etiquette in Iceland 


I understand the need to shower before entering one of Iceland’s beloved pool complexes. Aside from the locals who have little else to do but sit in hot water all day, these pools also see a never-ending stream of overseas visitors looking for their own dose of relaxation. No doubt, the dirt accumulates, so showering before taking a dip is not just wise, its a matter of simple politeness.

A map showing some of the most beloved pools across Iceland. Credit. Guide to Iceland.

However, that politeness being returned in favour—i.e, allowing people the privacy they deserve when naked—is positive news for the more prudent of foreign guests. Be under no illusion, showering before entering the pool is still a requirement, only now, one can do so without worrying if others are examining your dangly bits. All you have to do is make sure to secure yourself a shower with a curtain from staff. 

Note that these special rooms are mostly for disabled people and those with special needs, as well as visitors who come from a culture where being naked in a room with a bunch of strangers is considered somewhat taboo. First time visitors to the pools will be handed information on how to correctly shower as it is imperative to do so without wearing a swimsuit.

Showering means that less chlorine needs to be placed in the pool to keep it clean, thus maintaining the ethereal quality that has made Iceland’s water famous the world over, whilst also avoiding damage to people’s skin and hair. Understand that these new shower stalls are for the city only, and thus not applicable to the rest of Iceland.