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ØSTFOLD

Cultural cities and idyllic seaside experiences

Scroll down for inspiration or go directly to our
plan your trip page.

Østfold in Eastern Norway .
Photo: Visit Fredrikstad Hvaler / HouseofIkigai.co
Østfold in Eastern Norway .
Photo: Visit Fredrikstad Hvaler / HouseofIkigai.co

Ready to explore some of Norway’s most charming fortress towns, before you wind down by the sea?

Or see edgy contemporary art and prehistoric rock-carving sites in the forest?

If so, Østfold is the perfect place for you!

Østfold runs along the eastern side of the Oslofjord, from the town of Moss to the Swedish border.

The largest city is Fredrikstad, which is one of the best preserved fortified towns in Northern Europe.

Take a free “river cruise” with the city ferry from the city centre to the historic old town Gamlebyen.

Here, you’ll find both a selection of quirky shops and Scandinavia’s largest model railway exhibition.

During the summer months, the weekly Saturday flea market is a must.

Fredrikstad in Østfold .
Photo: Visit Fredrikstad Hvaler / HouseofIkigai.co
Fredrikstad in Østfold .
Photo: Visit Fredrikstad Hvaler / HouseofIkigai.co

Gamlebyen is simply bubbling with creativity!

Check out the exhibitions at Østfold Art Center (pictured) and the artists’ collective Bastion 5.

Round off your visit with a culinary experience in one of the local eateries, like Restaurant Slippen.

Østfold Art Centre .
Photo: Visit Fredrikstad / Hvaler / Houseofikigai.com
Østfold Art Centre .
Photo: Visit Fredrikstad / Hvaler / Houseofikigai.com

Now, hit the beach! The Hvaler islands is the place for idyllic seaside experiences.

Here, sunscreen, a swimsuit, and your coolest pair of sunglasses are all you really need.

And remember: the ocean breeze is a natural stress reliever all year round.

Hvaler in Østfold .
Photo: Fredrikstad Hvaler / HouseofIkigai.co
Hvaler in Østfold .
Photo: Visit Fredrikstad Hvaler / HouseofIkigai.co

More fun awaits at the border.

In Halden, the fortress Fredriksten towers above the friendly border town.

Follow the cobbled streets towards the harbour. Make sure to stop in a local cafe or one of the charming shops.

Maybe you’ll catch a glimpse of one of the town’s many American classic cars?

Fredriksten festning in Halden .
Photo: Halden Turist
Fredriksten festing in Halden .
Photo: Halden Turist

Stop by the historic Rød Manor House, where you can take a stroll in the beautiful English landscape garden after a visit to the museum.

Bring the family – they’ll love it!

Rød Herregård in Halden .
Photo: Halden historiske samlinger / Halden Turist
Rød Herregård in Halden .
Photo: Halden historiske samlinger / Halden Turist

Drop by Klatreparken as well – one of Scandinavia’s largest outdoor climbing parks lies right outside of Halden.

Getting used to the altitude? Spend the night in a treehouse in the forest.

Climbing park in Halden .
Photo: Visit Østfold
Climbing park in Halden .
Photo: Visit Østfold

Another regional attraction is the Halden Canal, where you can go by ferry, boat, or kayak through the tallest canal lock system in Europe, Brekke sluser.

Haldenkanalen in Østfold .
Photo: Jonas Ingstad
Haldenkanalen in Østfold .
Photo: Jonas Ingstad

Are you a fan of contemporary art?

If so, you must visit the coastal town of Moss and Jeløy peninsula. The art gallery F15 offers not only high-quality art experiences – you need to taste the Albykringle in the café!

Afterwards, you can digest on the beautiful coastal paths …

Galleri F15 in Moss .
Photo: Ingeborg Thorsland
Galleri F15 in Moss .
Photo: Ingeborg Thorsland

… or delve into the large art collection at Refsnes gods, which includes names like Edvard Munch and Andy Warhol.

You’re very welcome to spend the night here. Or go a bit further south, to Støtvig Hotel in Larkollen.

Refsnes Gods in Moss .
Photo: VisitOslofjord.no
Refsnes Gods in Moss .
Photo: Visitoslofjord.no

Can you decipher some of the 3000-year-old rock-carvings along the prehistoric path Oldtidsruta in Sarpsborg?

Since the last Ice Age, there have been human settlements in the area, and Østfold has Norway’s largest collection of rock carvings.

Sarpsborg was founded by King Olaf Haraldsson of Norway in 1016 when he was unable to pass the waterfall Sarpefossen by boat.

Considering that Sarpefossen has one of the largest water flows of any European waterfall, we can’t really blame him …

Petroglyphs in Sarpsborg .
Photo: Veronika Van Grønningen
Petroglyphs in Sarpsborg .
Photo: Veronika Van Grønningen

Visit the Inspiria Science Center for some cool experiments and activities. Afterwards, trick your way through the bike park outside.

INSPIRIA science center .
Photo: Therese Patrick
INSPIRIA science center .
Photo: Therese Patrick

If you want total relaxation, let the tranquil surroundings in Indre Østfold flow through your body.

Get close to nature in a canoe or kayak or hike some of the marked trails, such as Trollstien.

Canoeing in Indre Østfold .
Photo: Jonas Ingstad / Visit Indre Østfold
Canoeing in Indre Østfold .
Photo: Jonas Ingstad / Visit Indre Østfold

Find more information about Inner Østfold, Fredrikstad, Sarpsborg, Halden, and Moss.

Or check out the various attractions, hotels, and restaurants in Østfold on our plan your trip to Østfold page.

Canoeing in Indre Østfold .
Photo: Jonas Ingstad / Visit Indre Østfold
Canoeing in Indre Østfold .
Photo: Jonas Ingstad / Visit Indre Østfold
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