World’s largest sauna opened in Arctic Circle

The world’s largest sauna has been opened on a beach in northern Norway with views out north over the ocean.

World's largest sauna opened in Arctic Circle
The agora sauna is thought to be the world's largest. Photo: Martin Losvik/Salt

The sauna, which can accommodate 100 people, has been erected at the SALT festival of art, music and architecture on Sandhornøya Island, near Bodø in northern Norway. 

Aside from spectacular views of the sea through the sauna’s glass front, vistors can enjoy cultural events including music, talks, and performances.

The Agora sauna is one of a the many temporary buildings erected for the project, many of which resemble traditional Norwegian fish racks set up on Sandhornøya as part of an art project set to highlight life in the Arctic.

The buildings will in the coming years be disassembled and recreated in other northern regions in the world including Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Ireland, Scotland, Spitsbergen, Alaska and Russia. 

The site was first launched in the summer of 2014, but the architectural centrepiece, a long A-frame hall, was badly8 damaged during the winter in a major storm. 

The festival reopened in June this year after the main building was rebuilt and now includes a performance auditorium, a number of mobile lodges with glass ceilings and wood burning stoves, and a restaurant space alongside the Agora sauna.



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Oslo to get second floating sauna

A new raft in Oslo harbour will give hardy bathers the option of taking a sauna and dip in the sea year-round.

Oslo to get second floating sauna
The current floating sauna at Sørenga in Oslo. File photo: Heiko Junge / NTB scanpix

A similar floating sauna at Sørenga in Oslo has already become a popular attraction in the city since opening in 2015.

Now, a grant of one million kroner (103,000 euros) will provide for the people behind the concept to build an even larger floating sauna, reports VårtOslo.

“We are fortunate enough to have received one million kroner from the DNB Savings Bank Foundation (Sparebankstiftelsen). This money will go towards building a new floating sauna. The new raft will enable sauna and bathing all year round,” Ragna Marie Fjeld, chairperson of the Sørenga Badstu og Helårsbad association (Sørenga Sauna and Year- Round Swimming), told VårtOslo.

The new construction will supplement the existing floating sauna facility, according to the report.

The final design for the new floating sauna was selected from 57 submissions sent in as part of a competition, VårtOslo reports.

Architecture students Stian Fommestad and Edvard Glazebrook, whose design was chosen, told the media that the new facility – based on 30×30 beams – could be put together in very little time.

“This is a concept that can be built quickly within a week. So we hope to see it finished soon,” Fommestad said.

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