I read a post by a blogger, who shall remain nameless, about how awful Oslo was. I was intrigued as I was planning to go after TBEX Stockholm. The article was…atrocious. It was as if she had never been to a big city with varied groups of people. Regardless of how awful I thought the article was I also did not know what to expect when I arrived.
I walked into a bustling plaza with a giant tiger and immediately knew I made the right choice.
Oslo is a big city, filled with diverse people, restaurants and things to do. Anyone who thinks Oslo is not worth the visit doesn’t know much about travel.
Here is my list of must sees in Oslo.
There are so many museums they have to dedicate an island to them. You take a boat from main land Oslo to visit. Being in Oslo for the summer is lucky. I could not have had better weather so i just walked all over the island.
I visited the Viking ship museum which is four viking burial boats they found. I walked to the Holocaust museum which is a bit of a hike from where I was but worth the walk.
And then to the Kon-Tiki. There are over 50 museums in Oslo! It is nearly impossible to see them all on one visit.
Here is a link to all of the museums and what they entail.
They told me it wasn’t a proper fjord but I can’t tell the difference. I sailed for a few hours enjoying the history, the sun and the views. I love being on the water and I was dying to buy one of those tiny summer cottages along the Fjord. Apparently they have been in the families for generations and are extremely hard to get a hold of. Guess I am going to have to marry a native.
Here is a link to the tour I did! I did the 2 hour cruise. They offer food and drink on the boat.
I walked to the palace on my third day in Oslo. In the summer they give tours of the royal home because the family is on vacation. The grounds are beautiful and you can watch the guards change for free. My favorite thing about the palace is there is nothing separating you from being up close and personal.
You can walk freely. As if to say we are all the same there are no boundaries. Try to get near the gate of the White House, see what happens.
I also love that both the King and the Prince married commoners. Norwegians love that too. Giving truth to the idea that anyone can become royal.
Here is more info on the palace if you want to visit.
It is no secret that Oslo is an expensive city. Finding food doesn’t have to break the bank. I found a lot of really great sandwich shops where I could get a beer and a fresh sandwich for the same price as a Burger King.
Also PIZZA!! I sat outside with a beer and a pie at Peppe’s Pizza for under 20 USD.
I found Cafe Sara’s and enjoyed a burrito in a lively atmosphere.
It is possible to enjoy some nice places and not spend all your money.
Here are some good options on cheap eats in Oslo.
The city offers a really nice, FREE!! walking tour. It meets every day by the tiger statue at the main train station. It is a great introduction to the city. Giving insight into local history as well as contemporary information and a good basis of stuff to see.
Oslo has tons of fountains and it seems on hot summer days that’s where all the kids go to splash about. I walked hours every day just to take in all the sites.
I also recommend taking the subway to the Sculpture park and wandering around there. I spent the better half of a day admiring the art and enjoying a beer in the shade.
I think my favorite thing about Oslo was what my walking tour guide said. She asked each of us what we thought about when we thought about Norway. Most people, including myself, gave typical answers like vikings, trolls, skiing etc. She said that Norwegians love all those things and love being known for those things but what they really want to be known for is equality.
I thought that was beautiful and I think it summed up a lot about the city. It is diversified and cultural. It is not just one thing, it is many.
Maybe more countries should seek to be known for something as wonderful as equality. The USA could learn a lot from that simple message.
Is this all Oslo has to offer? Heck no! I barely scratched the surface of museums and restaurants. All the more reason to return. Oslo also proves that you shouldn’t always believe what someone says about a place.