Experience dynamic and beautiful Oslo
Getting to Svalbard often requires an overnight stay in Oslo. Consider this a bonus on the trip - to experience the beautiful capital of Norway! Oslo is a compact and walkable city, so you can easily explore parts of it in a short time. There is also a well-functioning public transport system and a convenient bicycle rental system. Whatever you decide to do, there are always cozy cafés and restaurants, music, exciting architecture, museums and beautiful natural areas within easy reach. We've listed some of our top tips!
Walk along the Harbor Promenade
The almost 10 km long harbor promenade is a significant part of the modern Oslo that has gradually emerged in recent years. The urban walkway connects the old and new parts in a unique way and there is much to see and experience along the way. Landmarks such as the Opera House, the Munch Museum and the Deichman Library are just some of the spectacular buildings you will pass.
Walk on the roof of the opera house
Yes, you read that right. Norwegian artists Kristian Blystad, Kalle Grude and Jorunn Sannes have designed not only a roof but also a gathering place. The beautiful marble-covered surfaces are designed for walking or sitting on, and the roof offers views of the archipelago as well as parts of the city center, with green-clad hills and mountains in the background. The opera house also offers a wide range of outdoor plays, concerts and other events throughout the year.
Cozy Aker Brygge and fashionable Tjuvholmen
With its mix of housing, shopping, restaurants and bars, the dynamic Aker Brygge is part of Oslo's harbor promenade. Sit down at a cozy restaurant or just enjoy the beautiful fjord landscape.
A bridge connects Aker Brygge to the Tjuvholmen peninsula, known for its architecture and art. Here you will find several galleries and interesting art installations between the buildings. There is also a sculpture park and a small beach.
Frogner Park - a place for recreation and culture
With its 100 hectares, Frogner Park is a green oasis in the middle of the city. The park includes the famous Vigelandsanlegget sculpture park created by artist Gustav Vigeland in the mid-20th century. Frogner park also has Norway's largest collection of roses, with a total of 14,000 plants of 150 different varieties. Anne på Landet, a cozy café housed in a building over 100 years old, is beautifully located in the park and serves lunch, coffee, homemade juice, wine and beer.
Polar history at Bygdøy
The leafy peninsula of Bygdøy, on the western side of Oslo, is home to several of Oslo's most popular museums. At the Fram Museum, you can board the polar ship Fram and explore the strongest wooden ship ever built. Fram is still the ship that has sailed the furthest north and the furthest south. Take a look at the cabins, lounges, cargo hold and engine room. You will get a unique insight into how the crew and their dogs managed to survive in the coldest places on earth. The museum also has a flight simulator where you can experience the cold and dangers of polar expeditions more than 100 years ago.
At the Kon-Tiki Museum you can see the original raft from the 1947 Kon-Tiki expedition across the Pacific Ocean that made Thor Heyerdahl world famous. The museum focuses not only on Kon-Tiki, but on Heyerdahl's entire life's work. From the first trips to Fatu Hiva, to the voyages on the Kon-Tiki, Ra, Ra II and Tigris, and the expeditions to the Galàpagos Islands, Easter Island and Tùcume in Peru. You can also walk through a 30-meter-long replica of a cave on Easter Island and see Heyerdahl's vast personal library.
Other museums on the peninsula include the Norwegian Maritime Museum, the Norwegian Folk Museum and the Viking Museum (though closed for renovation until 2025/2026).
Besides all the interesting museums, Bygdøy offers a beautiful landscape with forests, hiking trails and beaches. There are also a number of cafés and restaurants.
Bygdøy is easily reached by ferry, bus or bike from the center of Oslo.
Take a bath in the middle of the city
Next to the Opera House, in the new district of Sørenga, you will find Sørenga Havsbad. It is a large fjord pool with sea water, jetties and a small sandy beach. The area is accessible.
Culture, sauna and food at SALT
Overlooking Oslo's famous opera house lies this nomadic art project. The pyramid-shaped wooden structures are called hesjer and originate from traditional building methods along the Norwegian coast. Things happen here all year round! There are six saunas, numerous food stalls, indoor and outdoor bars, several stages and daily cultural programs.
Grünerløkka is a lively neighborhood with a great atmosphere. Here you will find cozy cafes and exciting eateries with everything from Norwegian specialties to international cuisine. The charming shopping streets are filled with designer shops, second-hand, vintage and flea markets, and if you like music, you've definitely come to the right place. You can easily explore the district on foot. The old workers' quarters offer walkable streets lined with playful street art and beautiful paths along the Akerselva river and through lush parks.
Enjoy food and drinks in Mathallen Oslo
At Mathallen Oslo, in the Grünerløkka neighborhood, you will find exciting products from both Norwegian and international producers. With more than 30 specialist shops, cafes and eateries, there is a wide variety of food and drink on offer. All of high quality. Many of the shops and eateries have their own catering facilities, but you can also buy food from several different places and enjoy it in the middle of the hall, in the square.
Find local gems along the Akerselva river
A walk along the 8-kilometer-long Akerselva river takes you to scenic spots, past historic buildings, swimming spots and several waterfalls. You'll also get the chance to experience local treasures and there are plenty of opportunities to eat and drink along the way. Akerselva connects several of the capital's cultural sites and offers music, improvisational theater and dance.