What makes Oslo unique?

Travel tips for Oslo by Thomas Johannessen, Visit Oslo

Oslo – Norway’s capital

and the largest city in Norway, with some 600 000 inhabitants. The city is beautifully located by the scenic Oslo fjord, with an extensive shoreline. The city is surrounded by hills of woodland and forests. Due to the shape of the city, the forest areas are within easy reach from all parts of the city.

Nordmarka outside Oslo by Tord Baklund, Visit Oslo

Hiking in Nordmarka

Nordmarka forests:

The forested hills of Nordmarka represent important recreational areas for the inhabitants of Oslo, both for hiking during the summer months and for cross country skiing in the winter. Nordmarka is easily accessible by the well developed public transport system of Oslo, with tube lines and trams. In fact, one of the unique features of Oslo is seeing people carrying their skis on the tubes and the trams in winter.

The scenic Sognsvann lake offers an easy, flat hike of 3 kms around the lake – easily accessible by tram & underground.

Homenkollen Ski Jump by Marco Boella, Visit Oslo

Frognerseteren café & restaurant

The Holmenkollen Ski jump is an important landmark in Oslo, located at the edge of the Nordmarka hills – a popular hiking and skiing area.

In the same area you find the tiny, wooden Holmenkollen Chapel  (external link) and the popular wooden Frognerseteren chalet restaurant, offering a beautiful view of the city and the Oslo fjord.

Oslofjord by Thomas Johannessen, Visit Oslo

Oslofjord in summer

The Oslo fjord:

The scenic Oslo fjord is also an important recreational area in summer – with tiny islands, the beautiful Bygdoy peninsula and picturesque summer houses. There are scheduled boats to the islands as well as fjord sightseeing trips. There are nice beaches at the Bygdoy peninsula as well as at the islands.

Further down the Oslo fjord you find the most picturesque, tiny town of Drobak, with tiny wooden houses and narrow streets, as well as a year around Christmas shop. It is well worth a visit, only a 45 minutes boat trip from the centre of Oslo.

Coffee shop in Grünerlokka by Sabine Zoller, Visit Oslo

Coffee shop at Grünerlokka

Coffee shops & popular in Oslo:

Coffee shops, authentic areas & classic in the city: Oslo is the number one city when it comes to the number of coffee shops per inhabitant – the people of Oslo simply love their coffee shops!

Popular among the inhabitants of Oslo: Grünerlokka and the Akerselva river on the east side, Solli plass square and Frogner area at the west side.Classic in the city centre: the library/lobby bar & restaurant at the Bristol hotel, the Grand café, Dagligstuen at Hotel Continental.

Munch Museum Oslo by Tord Baklund, Visit Oslo

Munch Museum in Oslo

Main sights of Oslo:

Most of the main sights are within walking distance of the city centre, like the National gallery, the Opera house, the Royal palace, the City Hall & the Akershus fortress. We recommend a scheduled city sightseeing to see the sights outside the city centre, like the Holmenkollen Ski Jump, the Fram & Viking ship museums and the open air Folk Museum at Bygdoy penninsula.

You can easily take a tram to the Frogner park / Vigeland sculpture park, but this park is also included in some of the city sightseeing trips. The Munch Museum at Toyen is easily reached by the underground.

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