Oslo City Breaks
Oslo, the capital of Norway, is situated in the south of the country, surrounded by green hills and mountains. The city is a hub for maritime trade in Europe and is also the cultural, scientific and economic centre of Norway.
Oslo has a rich and varied cultural life. Grand monumental buildings, great artists such as Edward Munch or Gustav Vigeland and wonderful music and literature are part of the positive image of the city. It is also a great place for exploring the history, age and ships of the Vikings, especially at the Viking Ship museum.
The culinary offerings should not be missed; several restaurants are Michelin star rated and the varied Norwegian cuisine impresses with unusual specialities such as moose or reindeer meat. One of the event highlights every year is the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize at the beginning of December.
For a more in-depth look at the city, check out our definitive guide to an Oslo city break.
- Flight time from London: 1 hour 55 min
- Oslo Airport, Gardermoen: 49km from the city centre; transfer time about 27 min
- Nearest railway station: Oslo Central Station
- Currency: Norwegian krone
The most interesting shopping area is in the city centre around Karl Johans gate. In that pedestrian zone, most of the brand shops are located.
Recommended malls in that area are Oslo City, Byporten, Glassmagasinet, Steen & Strøm, Paleet and Aker Brygge.
Other opportunities to buy great clothes or accessories can be found down the shopping streets Bogstadveien and Hegdehaugsveien.
Independent modern interior shops can be found on the Frogner - Bygdøy allé, as well as at the Møllergata in the city centre.
Young, regional designers sell their wares at Grünerløkka. Clothes, pottery and handicrafts are available as well as second-hand book and record shops.
This is an open-air market in the square of the same name, where you find general goods, such as clothing, souvenirs and flowers. The indoor market offers antiques, handicrafts and jewellery.
This is a shopping district where antiques, art galleries and food shops can be found.
North of Frogner, this place boasts shops, market stalls and department stores of every conceivable description.
Oslo's first big shopping centre, across the water from the tourist office at Vestbanen.
Visitors to Norway should not go home without trying one of the specialities such as moose, reindeer or fresh salmon. Oslo is well known for its superb fish restaurants, owing the top quality seafood to the city's location directly on the sea.
Especially in the areas Youngstorget, Grønland and Grünerløkka where a lot of new restaurants and cafés are located.
Le Canard, Statholdergaarden, Feinschmecker and Oscarsgate are the Michelin star awarded restaurants in Oslo. Here you can expect higher prices, but excellent quality is assured.
The Lofoten Fiskerestaurant is primarily known for its great seafood. The fresh ingredients are only used in season and the service is excellent.
Smia Galleri serves European and Norwegian specialities in a romantic atmosphere at reasonable prices.
Lorry - Parkveien 12
Lorry provides a warm and inviting atmosphere in a funky and stylish interior. Order a delicious sandwich, quiche or burger.
Eik - Universitetsgata 11
Just a few minutes' walk away from the National Gallery, you find the Eik in the Hotel Savoy. It serves delicious food at very reasonable prices and has been cited in the Guide Michelin's Bib Gourmand category for establishments with exceptional food.
Sydoest - Trondheimsveien 5
Located in the highly trendy Grünerløkka area of south-east Oslo, Sydöst opened in 2005 and is already one of the most popular restaurants in town.
In summer, you find many open-air bar and restaurants along the quaysides of Aker Brygge, in front of Akershus Festning.
If you are looking for the club scene in Oslo, pop into Dansens Hus, Kristian IVs Gate. In the summer, there are performances of folk dancing at the Konserthuset twice a week.
Highly recommended is the Stortorvets Gjæstgiveri in Grensen 1, which is a lively traditional jazz bar with New Orleans-style bands.
One of the most visited attractions in Norway is the Vigeland Sculpture Park. More than 200 sculptures in bronze, granite and cast iron have been created by Gustav Vigeland. The main sculpture is the Monolith with a height of 14 metres and consisting of 121 human figures. In summer, the area is especially popular with young Norwegians who are having a picnic or barbeque.
The Viking Ship Museum is home to not only the world's two best-preserved wooden Viking ships of the 9th century but also tools, textiles and household utensils of that time.
The Holmenkollen Ski Museum and Tower tells the 4000-year of the history of skiing and displays interesting facts from the Winter Olympics at Lillehammer in 1994 and in Oslo in 1952. From the observation deck on top of the jump tower, visitors have a unique view over Oslo.
The construction of Akershus Fortress, a former residence of kings and centre of government, took over 700 years. Today it is a national symbol and houses the Royal Mausoleum. Due to its central location, the fortress grounds are a popular recreational area for tourists and locals.
The Oslo Opera House was finished in 2008. It is situated in the old harbour area of Bjørvika and includes the impressive walkway on the roof and one of the most technologically advanced auditoriums in the world.
Book a river cruise and marvel at the stunning fjord setting of the city.
Take a short ferry crossing from central Oslo to the peninsula of Bygdøy. Visitors can explore Norway's varied maritime past in museums and enjoy attractions that within 10 or 15 minutes' walking distance of one another.
Norway's National Gallery (Nasjonalgalleriet) houses an impressive international art collection, including Gauguin, Picasso, Cezanne and El Greco.