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One of Iceland's most iconic tourist destinations, the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa will be closed for the next week due to an increase in seismic activity following a series of earthquakes.
The closing comes from an abundance of caution for both guests and staff of the resort. Guests rushed to leave the spa’s hotel in the early hours of Thursday, after they were awoken shortly before 1 a.m. by a magnitude 4.8 quake, the strongest to hit the region since the recent wave of seismic activity began on October 25.
The activity around the Blue Lagoon has produced an accumulation of magma underground around the Reykjanes peninsula. The accumulation of magma has been recorded at a depth of about five kilometers, and should it start moving towards the surface it could lead to a volcanic eruption. While there were no clear signs of magma moving towards the surface, scientists note the situation can change on short notice.
The Reykjanes Peninsula on Iceland’s southwestern coast includes a volcanic system that has erupted three times since 2021, after being dormant for 800 years.
In the worst-case scenario, lava would threaten the town of Grindavík and the Blue Lagoon, along with the pipelines channeling hot water to thousands of homes that are heated with geothermal energy.
As of today, the company shared the resort will remain closed until November 16.