How To Weekend In Oslo

Oslo Port

Standing proud as the beautiful capital of Norway, Oslo is often overlooked by many weekend travellers. In fact, even a cursory glance at Oslo’s statistics will tell you it is extremely easy to get to, beautiful to look at, and full of cultural excursions to engage in. It’s not a gargantuan European city like Paris or Berlin, which are impossible to travers on foot alone, but is more reminiscent of Rome or Vienna, which are easily explorable without the help of a metro or bus. If you’re planning a European getaway anytime soon, consider making Oslo top of your list.

Oslo is perfect for a late winter/early spring break, so now is just the right time to visit. It is a truly beautiful city, long defined by its expansive waterfront, and surrounded by picturesque snow-capped mountains. It is a little pricier than some European cities, but the return on the investment is an experience unlike any other capital. A good way to start your weekend is on the fjord, where you can take in the splendour of the Opera House, a striking modern structure of glass and granite, resembling two blocks of ice.

Royal Palace in Oslo

The two main shopping streets of Oslo are located just behind the fjord, so if you want to do a little window shopping, you can tick that box as well. The Norwegian currency is the krone, so keep an eye on the exchange rates before your trip to make sure you’re getting the best deal if you choose to buy something. In terms of dining, there are local delights to be sampled alongside classic standards. If you ever fancy trying a deer fillet, Oslo is your place. There’s also a great selection of seafood, which you might expect from a city situated so close to the water.

There are more than a few luxury hotels to choose from in Oslo. The Thon Hotel, located conveniently close to Oslo’s main airport, is a solid bet. Last year, the hotel played host to Norway’s first official poker tournament, which saw 2,000 odd players descend on the hotel for a record-breaking televised broadcast. Gambling laws in Norway have relaxed over the last couple of years, along these kind of tournaments to take place on home soil, where previously they’d been held in places like Dublin and Latvia. Despite the strict laws, poker is a huge deal in Norway, with many of the world’s top players, like young champion Annette Obrestad, descending from the Scandinavian country.

Oslo Opera House

In terms of other excursions, the Holmenkollen ski-jump tower is not to be missed, and is easily accessible by subway (which runs very efficiently and is pretty cost effective). The impressive tower looms sixty metres above ground, and comes complete with a ski museum. This is a popular choice with locals and tourists alike; spend even a couple of days in Oslo and you’ll discover the Norwegians are very much the sporty type. Another unique experience is the Ice Bar, where everything is pretty much made of ice; even the drinks are served in ice glasses.

So if you’re planning a weekend getaway and are undecided about your destination, throw Oslo into the mix. It’s small enough to experience in a weekend, and comes complete with fantastic scenery, luxury hotels, amazing food and more than a few unique experiences.

Article source in Norwegian:

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