Tourist Attractions: Top 15 Best Things to do in Oslo

Oslo, Norway is a picture of a happy place and that’s a fact because the capital and the most populous city of Norway holds the second spot in the United Nation’s World’s Happiness Report in 2013. The criteria for the survey are life expectancy, health, freedom, and social report.

Oslo Opera House - Best Things to do in Oslo
Oslo Opera House – Best Things to do in Oslo

It’s also a safe place where there’s low crime rate, low murder rate and low incarceration rate which is what tourists coming to a new place should be considering. Its closeness to nature, fusion food restaurants, fashion and art scene and other forms of attractions make Oslo a city which no one could resist.


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Must-see Places and Best Things to do in Oslo

Norwegian Opera and Ballet

Oslo Opera House
Oslo Opera House

It was formed in 1957 but only took residence in Oslo Opera House beginning in the spring of 2008. Oslo’s opera house features top performances where guests can hear opera libretto in other languages aside from the original one. The programme at the opera house varies from time to time. The high performances plus the classical styling of the whole theater make for an affair to remember.

Vigeland Sculpture Park

Vigeland Sculpture Park
Vigeland Sculpture Park

The great works of the late Norwegian sculptor Gustav Vigeland can be found in this park. Around 200 of his sculptures like The Angry Boy (Sinnataggen), The Wheel of Life (Livshjulet) and The Monolith (Monolitten) will greet visitors when they come to the park. His other works using bronze, granite and cast iron can be seen too. He also designed this free for all park).

Natural History Museum and Botanical Gardens

Zoological Museum of Oslo photo by Nickrds09 via Wikipedia CC
Zoological Museum of Oslo By Nickrds09 – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0 no

Be amazed with Oslo’s most comprehensive collection of well-preserved plant specimens and animal specimens, rocks, minerals, and fossils. This museum combines both Zoological and Botanical in one location and holds an array of scientific collections. The arrangements in the Botanical Gardens are outstanding and a trip there can evoke feelings of relaxation. The best time to visit the museum and garden is during the summer or spring when all plants are in full bloom.

Sorenga Seawater Pool

Sorenga Seawater Pool photo via VisitOslo.com
Sorenga Seawater Pool photo via VisitOslo.com

This year-round pool offers a fresh take on swimming pool concept. Its water is sea water which comes straight from Oslo Fjord. So, there’s a beach, a seawater swimming pool, and kid’s pool. Sorenga Sea Water Pool is located in the new neighborhood of the same name. Aside from enjoying the water, families, and friends can gather at the recreational area where several cafés and restaurants are present.

Akershus Fortress

Akershus Fortress
Akershus Fortress – Best Things to do in Oslo

Akershus Castle and Fortress dates back to 1299 through the ruling of King Hakon V.  It was completed in the 1300s and survived numerous sieges back in the day. It was turned to a modern Renaissance castle by King Christian IV. The historic place offers guided tours of the fortress which is available every summer. That area holds special events like concerts, public holiday celebrations, and ceremonies.

Nordmarka Wilderness Area

Nordmarka Wilderness Area by Sondrekv via Wikipedia
Nordmarka Wilderness Area By Sondrekv – Own work, Public Domain.

Prepare yourself to take on full wilderness activities in this huge forested region of Oslo where activities vary every season. The area is 430 square kilometers and its highest peak is Kirkeberget which is 629 meters above sea level. Winter activities include skiing which is allowed until the evening. On the other hand; hiking, biking, and swimming are the activities of summer. There are some cabins which can accommodate overnight; meals included.

TusenFryd

TusenFryd photo via VisitOslo.com
TusenFryd photo via VisitOslo.com

It’s easy to see why this is Norway’s largest amusement park. TusenFryd has more than 30 fun attractions and hosts games, shops and places to eat. The whole place isn’t limited to kids and families but for every age group, friends and couples. It’s PWD-friendly and offers a discount for people with OSLO Pass. There’s a swimming pool aside from epic rides like roller coasters, log ride, and carousels

Oslo Winter Park (Oslo Vinterpark)

Tryvann Ski Resort by Hans-Petter Fjeld via Wikipedia CC Best Things to do in Oslo
Tryvann Ski Resort by Hans-Petter Fjeld via Wikipedia CC

Skiing is Oslo is a must during winter and tourists should do it at the largest ski resort in the city. It has 18 slopes and 11 lifts and some are beginner and children-friendly. The skiing season starts from November or December until the end of Easter. As with other Oslo attractions, the ski park has a bakery, café and the usual amenities for a more pleasurable stay.

The Viking Ship Museum

Viking Ship Museum photo by Grzegorz Wysocki via Wikipedia CC
Viking Ship Museum By Grzegorz Wysocki – Own work, CC BY 3.0CC

When you’re in Oslo, it’s impossible to not think about Vikings because it’s a part of their history. The Viking Ship Museum is the home of the best and well-preserved Viking ships and artifacts from the tombs found in Oslo Fjord. Some of the discoveries from Gokstad, Oseberg and Tune ships are taken care of in the museum. They also got collections of small boats, sledges, tools, textiles and household utensils from those discoveries.

Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art

Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art photo by Vidar Iversen via Wikipedia CC
Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art photo by Vidar Iversen via Wikipedia CC

Another museum to visit but this time it houses collections of important modern and contemporary art in Northern Europe. Works from prominent artists are exhibited rotationally. International works of art also found their way to this museum as works from Brazil, India, Japan, and China can be seen in display. The structure in itself is also a work of art as it was designed by the famous Italian architect Renzo Piano.

Food Trip

Food Trip in Oslo
Food Trip in Oslo

Don’t miss the finest seafood when you’re in Oslo as they get their catch straight from the harbor. Urban farm to table restaurants can be found in Oslo as well a restaurant including rose petals in their menu. If you’re brave enough, you can also try their menu which uses ants for acid instead of lemons. If fine dining isn’t your thing then you can eat out at more budget-friendly joints which are sprouting in Oslo.

Oslo Cathedral

Oslo Cathedral photo by JP Fagerback via Wikipedia CC
Oslo Cathedral photo by J. P. Fagerback via Wikipedia CC

Oslo Cathedral is both a place of worship and an attraction for tourists. The church dates back to 1697 and is made up of a complicated stained glass window are by the brother of Sculptor Gustav Vigeland, Emanuel and a painted ceiling which was completed between 1936 and 1950. Its altarpieces are 1748 model of the Last Supper and a Michael Rasch Crucifix but were transferred to a different location.

Radhuset (The City Hall)

Radhuset Oslo City Hall photo by Alexander Ottesen via Wikipedia CC
Radhuset Oslo City Hall photo by Alexander Ottesen via Wikipedia CC

Who thinks that a city hall can pass for an attraction but Oslo’s huge city hall is an exemption. The city hall’s façade has different sculptures while the interiors are well-decorated and the interiors are made of colorful wall art done by Norway’s famous artists of the 1920s and 1950s. Its reception room below is the venue for the Nobel Prize awarding ceremony.

Norsk Folkemuseum

Norsk Folkemuseum
Norsk Folkemuseum

This open-air museum has an extensive collection of 155 traditional houses from different parts of Norway as well as a church from the 1200s. Guests can go to indoor exhibits for traditional handicrafts of Norway, folk costumes, Sami culture, toys, history of pharmaceutics and weapons. The exhibitions change often. A visit to the museum in summer offers activities like horse carriage rides, animal feeding, handicraft decorations, etc.

Harbour Promenade

Harbour Promenade Oslo
Harbour Promenade Oslo

Spanning at 9 kilometers along the waterfront of Oslo is the Harbour Promenade where tourists can enjoy sightseeing and historical, architectural and art exhibition and some adventure too. It’s the perfect spot to view the city and a spectacular way to engage music and other forms of fun activities. This is also the area where kayakers travel through the 300-meter tunnel to the Akerselva River.

Eurail Pass for Norway (3, 4, 5 or 8 Days)

Eurail Pass Norway image via KLOOK
Eurail Pass Norway image via KLOOK

Discover the beauty of Norway with unlimited train rides for 3, 4, 5 or 8 days with the Eurail Pass for all three countries. Simply make a booking, then select your desired pick up date or the date you want to receive your pass via courier.

Eurail Pass for Norway (3, 4, 5 or 8 Days)BOOK ONLINE

You could say that Oslo, Norway is a city that’s full of life, color, history, art and many more. The fascination of people in this place is founded for every corner you look, there’s always something to do and things to try.

Do you have other Fun and Interesting things to do in Oslo, Norway? Please feel free to share by posting a comment below.

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