Oslo, the land of the Vikings, offers a world of experiences both in summer and winter. It has been named the 2019 European Green Capital.
Saturday – Upon Arrival
After arriving in Oslo, I decided to spend half a day on Bygdoy Island where I could get a glimpse into Norwegian history. It’s a good idea to head first to the Viking Ship Museum. It’s a small museum and doesn’t take much time to explore the four ships which braved the oceans, crafted exclusively out of wood, flat and huge with a curved bow, well-decorated. An interesting fact is that once their owners died, all the ships were buried with them! After a few centuries, they were unearthed by archaeologists, restored and now are on display. Don’t miss the souvenir store with charming figurines of Vikings, ship miniatures, and a few board games.
Saturday – At Noon
Take a bus to the Karl Johans Gate. You could drop into the Glasmagasinet Oslo, a departmental store, and after browsing at the famous Illums Bolighus store with Scandinavian designs for homes and kitchens, stop for a meal at the restaurant called Spiseri 3ETAGE, a favorite with locals. The Christiania Hamburger is a great choice –make sure to indulge in the unlimited coffee! Walk across the road to the Oslo Cathedral which has a fantastic painted ceiling. After that, continue on, past the Grand Hotel and head to the Royal Palace. A simple but extremely large building, drop in to see how royalty lives.
Saturday – In the Evening
Walk up to the Akershus Fortress and explore it, delving into Norwegian history 900 years ago. Afterwards, just relax on a bench and admire the magnificent view of the harbor or head to the National Theatre and its lively square. Sculptures of famous writers Henrik Ibsen and Bjornson welcome visitors at the National Theatre built in 1899.
Sunday – In the Morning
Take an early tram to Vigeland Park to beat the crowds. The obelisk stands out against the sky, flanked by around 200 sculptures leading up to it, all crafted by a single sculptor, Gustave Vigeland. The sculptures focus on each stage of human life and emotions. The obelisk towers into the sky with human figures entwined around it.
Sunday – At Noon
From the Vigeland Park, take a bus to the Oslo Central Station to admire the urban architecture. The Barcode buildings with their sophisticated facades feature prominently. Further down, check out the stunning Norwegian Royal Opera House. Take the tram or bus from Oslo Central Station to the Majorstuen district to have a look at some of Oslo’s upmarket stores, fashion, and kitchenware. From Majorstuen, proceed to Holmenkollen, famous for its skiing history. Besides educating yourself on Oslo’s winter sports, it’s also a great viewing point.
Sunday – Before You Leave
Akker Bryge is one of the most soothing areas in Oslo. You can sit on the pier and watch life go by, or take a one-hour boat ride around Oslo’s fjords. Within walking distance are the Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, the Nobel Peace Centre, and the Oslo City Hall.