Although it’s not a large city (it’s got somewhere under 700,000 inhabitants), Oslo is a little gem that deserves to be discovered at least in a city break. Often, the tourists who want to see the Northern Lights stop in Olso on their way to the North – maybe towards Tromso or towards the Lofoten Islands (which, incidentally, are of a peculiar beauty, no matter if you’re going there in summer or winter).
The capital of Norway is famous especially for its parks and museums. It worth going to Vigeland Park, where you can admire over 200 sculptures of the renowned artist Gustav Vigeland. Take a free afternoon and go to the Ekeberg Park, where have been installed about 30 sculptures, most representing women. It’s like a walk in the forest, in a fantastic setting and, bonus, from the top of the park, you have an exceptional panoramic view over the fjord and the city. And, last but not least, take a stroll in the Frogner Park, but not only in the Park: Frogner is one of the most beautiful areas of the city, an exclusive residential neighborhood, with gorgeous houses at every turn.
As for museums, well, there are many options here. Want a top three? Then add on your list the Viking Ships Museum, the National Museum of Contemporary Art and the Munch Museum (dedicated to Edward Munch). And, take my word for it: go and have a bite, I’m sure you already need a break!
While on the food chapter, it must be said that you’ll find lots of goodies in Oslo – but at a price to match. Prices are high in the capital of Norway, but you probably knew that already. Anyway, choose the salmon – raw, smoked, marinated, or cooked in any other way – it’s absolutely awesome, hey, we’re talking about the famous Norwegian salmon.
For the best pasta and other Italian dishes, be sure to go to Bono and I promise you’ll crave to come back. When you need an extra boost of energy, pass by Joe & The Juice and order a ginger shot: it contains only ginger and apple. And it’s strong, I could say that the apple taste is hardly perceptible J, but it’s the healthiest way to charge your batteries for a new promenade.
Where else? Go to Aker Brygge, an area with modern architecture and galleries, located on the fjord’s edge. Yeap, here you’ll also find plenty of restaurants, in case you get hungry again! Then certainly head towards the Opera House, an impressive, modern building – from its roof you can admire the city’s panorama and the famous floating sculpture called She Lies, created by Monica Bonvicini.
Take the bus or go for a half of hour walk up to Mathallen, a sort of small indoor market that hosts restaurants and cafes. From there, walk up by the river and you’ll have a very pleasant surprise: a waterfall. Yes, you’ll see a waterfall in the middle of the city. And, if you’re not already tired, keep going in the same direction until you get to… a second waterfall.
Ups, I almost forgot: Oslo also means fun, and clubs, and places in which to spend an awesome evening. Just go into a wine bar or enjoy a glass of champagne in a very nice place called – how else! – Champagneria!