What to Do in Oslo

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Ekebergparken

Oslo, Norway

A national heritage park with contemporary outdoor sculptures (including works by Louise Bourgeois and Salvador Dali), Ekebergparken, is a lot of fun. Located on a hillside, Ekebergparken boasts some spectacular lookout points; the perfect location to take in the city below and the fjord beyond.

Address

Kongsveien 23 0193

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The Munch Museum

Oslo, Norway

Unlike its somewhat unimpressive exterior, exhibitions at The Munch museum are elating. Dedicated to the life and works of the Norwegian artist Edvard Munch, the museum’s collections comprise of a staggering 1,150 paintings, close to 18,000 prints and 7,700 drawings and watercolours. Today the museum houses more than half of the artist’s paintings and most of print motifs.

Address

Tøyengata 53 0578

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Astrup Fearnley Museum

Oslo, Norway

For contemporary art, the Astrup Fearnley museum is a strong candidate. Designed by world-renowned architect Renzo Piano, the Astrup Fearnley museum is appealing before you step inside. In addition to native artists, previous exhibitions have included Damien Hirst and Jeff Koons.

Address

Trandpromenaden 2 0252

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The Floating Sauna

Oslo, Norway

Made of recycled driftwood and plastic, this is a unique hot bathing experience. On land, there’s also a sauna bar called Salt where you can rent a small sauna made out of whisky barrels or just pay to enter the main event with a view of the fjord.

Address

4 Frognerstranda 0250

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Korketrekkeren

Oslo, Norway

Built for the 1952 Olympic Games as Norway’s first bobsleigh track, Korketrekkeren is 1.5 km of childish fun. Take the metro to Frognerseteren to reach the winter tobogganing slope dubbed the “corkscrew”. The toboggan slide is free of charge, so all you need to do is rent a sledge. Once you reach the end at Midstuen metro station, you can hop on the metro to the starting point and do it all again.

Address

Holmenkollveien 0791

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Get outdoors

With the sheer wealth of open nature skirting the entire city, it’s no wonder most Osloites’ weekend activities revolve around getting a fix of the outdoors – it’s more popular than pubbing and clubbing. A 20-minute scenic tram ride from the city will take you to the winding hiking routes, dramatic lakes and towering pines of our favourite forest, Nordmarka. It’s where the trees for Future Library are planted. After exploring, take the lift to Holmenkollen, famed for its ski-jumping hill and competitions – though there’s plenty of ski opportunities for amateurs too. Workout done, stop by the Bavarian-like Holmenkollen Restaurant for tartare, a hot toddy and mountaintop views.

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The Well

A magnificent, high-design wellness centre where the robes are thick, the sculptures are world-famous and phones are literally swiped from your hand if used in the restaurant. Standing just outside the city, The Well collects sauna and bathing rituals from across the world under one enormous, space-age roof. It feels part Swiss health clinic, part Japanese ryokan and every part Nordic seamless. A golden bus transports visitors 20 minutes back and forth between the city centre and the complex, where you can easily spend an entire day luxuriating in the pools, saunas, massage rooms and organic cafés. Those, combined with the manicured gardens lined with thick evergreen forest, make this not only the largest spa and bathhouse in Scandinavia, but also the best. It’s perversely nice.

Address

Kongeveien 65, 1412 Sofiemyr

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Salt

Don’t fancy schlepping to The Well? Try SALT, a sauna and artspace opened by a wilderness-loving northern Norwegian in Oslo’s inner-city harbour. Set opposite the Snohetta-designed opera house, it hosts concerts, plays and exhibitions in a giant sauna that can fit hundreds of people, with lots of smaller saunas scattered along the water too. Of course, there’s a great bar and café.

Address

Langkaia, 0150 Oslo