Brekkeparken is a beautiful park and open air museum just outside of the city center in Skien, and provides one of the best views down to the city.
The park is completely free to enter, and a popular recreational space for both citizens of Skien, as well as tourists. It’s used by all age groups, but it’s particular popular with families with children. Many people consider Brekkeparken to be one of the best things to do in Skien, and I don’t think anyone ever regrets spending an hour or two in the park.
There’s a lot of interesing history in Brekkeparken, and we’re going to be looking closer at both the history itself, as well as how to get to Brekkeparken, what to do in Brekkeparken, and how to use the public park in this article.
So keep reading to learn all there is to know about Brekkeparken in Skien in our Brekkeparken travel guide!
Why you should visit Brekkeparken
There are several good reasons why you should visit Brekkeparken if you’re in Skien, no matter if you’re coming with children, or are a typical tourist who want to experience all the unique things Norway has to offer.
Let’s look closer at the things you can do in Brekkeparken!
Enjoy an amazing public park
The main reason why most locals use Brekkeparken is to relax and enjoy the park life. It’s completely free to enter, so many people go there for a few hours to just enjoy the park for what it is.
Children usually love Brekkeparken. Not only is there a big playground there, but there are also many open grass patches where they can run around. And did I mention that there are ducks in a duck pond there?
The Museum Cafe allows you to borrow trikes that the children can use to traverse in the park, and these are even completely free of charge, but only available when the Museum Café is open.
The grass patches are perfect for a picnic, or just to relax for a little while.
Learn more about the local history of Skien
Brekkeparken has a long history that has directly impacted the rest of Skien city, and the museum offers guided tours in the huge mansion called Søndre Brekke Gård.
This mansion is still filled with authentic interior and decorations from the time period, and shows how the city’s elite lived.
There is a long history of ghost sightings in the mansion, which has sparked a lot of urban legends about the so called “grey lady” that shows up from time to time.
This urban legend is also the center focus of the park’s escape room challenge in the basement of the mansion, which offers a unique way to learn more about the mansion, the park and its history.
See farm buildings from different historical areas
The park acts as an open air museum, and they house 14 different farm buildings from different time periods. These really give you a good glimpse of how life was like for farmers several hundred years ago.
You can book a guided tour that shows you the authentic interiors of these farm houses, which will absolutely give you a unique experience as to how life was like for Norwegian farmers.
You can also choose to just casually stroll around the park and enjoy the buildings without a guide, and there are signs next to many of them telling you their time period and details.
As you can imagine, you have a high chance of seeing wedding photographers take photos of newly wed couples in the park, and these old farm buildings are popular backdrops for these photos.
When to visit Brekkeparken
The best time to visit Brekkeparken is definitely in the summer season, preferably in late May or June. This is when the flowers are in full bloom, and the park shows you its best side.
This time also tend to have a nice, but not too warm weather, so it’s perfect for a few hours in the public park.
That said, you can visit Brekkeparken all year round, and you can enjoy yourself just as much in the museum or on a guided tour in winter as you will in summer. Especially if you’re mainly interested in learning about the local history.
I for one really love taking a stroll in the park in late autumn when the chill autumn air gives you a cool breeze. The orange and red colors also make the park vibrant and gives it a really amazing look.
The Museum in Brekkeparken
Brekkeparken has it’s own museum called Telemark Museum, which offer both permanent and temporary exhibitions. You can enjoy the museum at your own pace, or join one of the guided tours there to learn more. The museum is located below the main café building.
Admission to the museum costs 100 NOK for adults, and 40 NOK for children.
There is currently (in 2023) two exhibitions open; “Alt Dette Er Ditt”, a collection of objects donated to Telemark Museum over the decades, and “Karsten og Petra”, a homage to a beloved children’s book series.
It’s open on all days except Mondays during the summer season (May 1 to August 31), but only on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays for the rest of the year.
The opening hours are between 10AM and 7PM on days where the museum is open. I suggest planning to spend between 1 and 2 hours in the museum.
Eat and Drink in Brekkeparken
There are two options for those who want to enjoy a cold drink or a bite in Brekkeparken. The museum building has a café on the first floor, and offer both indoor and outdoor seating.
The other option is at the other end of the park, close to the playground. There you will find Brekkeparken Kafe. They serve food and drinks, and offer what is probably the best view in all of the city. You can glance down at the entire city from your table, and I definitely recommend sitting down there for a drink or a small meal.
How to get to Brekkeparken
Brekkeparken is located just a few minutes from Skien city center, and you can easily get there by foot if you are OK with walking uphill for roughly 5 minutes. Total walking time from the city center is 8 minutes.
You can also drive a car or taxi to the park, and there are free parking spots just beside the main entrance to the café.
It’s possible to reach Brekkeparken by bus, but it’s actually a big hassle to get from the city center to Brekkeparken by bus, so I do not recommend this option.
Nicklas is the owner and editor of The Norway Guide, and is responsible for most of the content on the website.
He lives in Skien, Norway with his wife and two children. Nicklas is specialized in Norwegian ecology (including Norway’s geology, wildlife and flora) from his degree in Ecology And Nature Management at University of South-Eastern Norway, but has a particular interest in tourism and content creation.
His biggest hobbies are fishkeeping, going on hikes with his dog, and rooting for the local football team.