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Winter in the city – here are the best spots for downhill sledding

Forget skis. Forget snowboards. Forget skates. It’s time to dig out your toboggan and sled down the best hills Norway’s cities have to offer.

Published 10 March 2017

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Norwegians may be born with skis on their feet, but from early on they’re also pretty attached to sleds and toboggans – few winter activities can compete with that level of fun and easy accessibility.

This goes for cities as well. Around Norway, there are now a multitude of great downhill sledding spots available near the city centres, some of which we have gathered up in this handy guide.

Be aware that the Norwegian weather these days is somewhat shifty and can affect the amounts of snow, so some of these hills aren’t always available for sledding. On a related note, do make sure to properly assess the terrain where you are sledding and preferably wear a helmet – crashing into a rock is no fun at all.

Oslo

In the capital, Korketrekkeren (the Corkscrew) is the undisputed king of toboggan hills, conveniently situated right next to the Frognerseteren metro stop.

This has been Oslo’s prime downhill sledding hill since it was first prepared in the early 1900s, named for its many twists and turns. The ride down will take you between six and nine minutes, and you can ride the metro right back up from the Midtstuen stop for 16 minutes if you’d like to go again.

Korketrekkeren might prove a bit too challenging for younger children, but according to website Aktiv i Oslo, the hill leading down to Skistua is a great alternative that offers little ones ample opportunity for fun toboggan times.

If you’re arriving sled-less, get in touch with Akeforeningen i Oslo (the Oslo downhill sledding association) up by Frognerseteren. They offer sled rentals, with free helmet rentals thrown in for good measure.

Bergen

Where to go downhill sledding in the city between the seven mountains? As is often the case in matters regarding Bergen, the answer is once again Mount Fløyen. Hitch a ride with the Fløibanen funicular from the city centre and up into the city’s iconic mountain and you will be rewarded with a long, beautifully snaking hill to enjoy on your sled ride.

For smaller kids, there are also toboggan opportunities up on Fløysletten.

While you’re up here, you can also check out the Fløistuen café, that serves soups, pastries, hot cocoa and coffee.

Trondheim

In Trondheim, the Akebakken hill by Skistua skiing lodge near Gråkallen is your number one destination for placing your behind on a sled or toboggan.

Should you require a sledding break, the lodge serves both wild stew, tomato soup, pancakes and hot beverages ranging from coffee to blackcurrant toddy, as well as beer and wine.

Tromsø

#barnebarn❤️ i farta#Tromsø#charlottenlund 😎

Et innlegg delt av Anitha Kvamme (@anithakvamme)

In the popular Charlottenlund open air area in the middle of Tromsøya, the city has created a dedicated slope for downhill sledding.

Here, you will also find lean-tos for lighting campfires. If you are sans toboggan, they are available for rent from places like Tromsø Outdoor in the city centre.

Stavanger

Nyoppusset Vålandtårn ☺No princess but cafe' every forth night#vålandstårnet#stavanger#norway

Et innlegg delt av Bengt Christensen (@bengtchri)

Stavanger’s snow situation these days doesn’t lend itself well to downhill sledding, but if winter does make a frosty comeback, the hill by the Vålandstårnet tower is where you should head to.

The tower itself was renovated in 2016 and even features a Sunday café, although it is closed due to construction work in the surrounding area at the moment.

Lillehammer

In the city where the Winter Olympics took place in 1994, there are of course a wide array of downhill sledding opportunities. For the classic experience, visit the Kanthaugen Freestyleanlegg hill, offering their own sleds and a sled lift that will take you to the top of the hill.

For those yearning for an extra ounce of action, Lillehammer Olympic Bob- and Luge Track is the place to be. Here, you will thunder down an Olympic halfpipe track at speeds over 100 kilometres an hour in either a bobraft (a rubber bobsleigh) or a taxibob (the kind used in competitions), while a skeleton sled will put you on your belly, rushing down head first at 70 kilometres an hour.

Be aware that taxibob and skeleton is restricted to ages 16 and up, while the bobraft is accessible to children 10 and up. when accompanied by an adult.

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