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Oslo is among the earliest capitals in most of Scandinavia. Due to the elevated curiosity about tourism, Oslo has experienced an explosion previously decade. Whereas two-three decades ago, site visitors to Oslo might have needed to depend exclusively around the intrinsic great thing about the region for a great time. Now, with all the added tourist points of interest and museums, the mixture is dynamite. There's enough to do and see in Oslo to help keep you just busy and happy for days. Oslo is a heady bottle of the old and new, much like new wine in a charming old bottle. It sports a fine Viking tradition, has abundant greenery, is robustly cosmopolitan and unapologeticaly edgy.
 
Within the eleventh century, a Viking king founded Oslo, and under Hakkon V, the town grew to become the main city of Norwegian. Through the centuries, Oslo has burned down numerous occasions, but each time it had been reconstructed on the grander scale. Most lately, the town was completely destroyed by fire in 1824, however the King of Denmark, Christian IV, reconstructed the city in close closeness towards the Akershus Castle. Throughout this time around, he re-named the town Christiania, however in 1924 Oslo reverted to its previous (and current) title. After The Second World War, Oslo broadened to 175 square miles now, when it comes to area, it is among the ten biggest capital metropolitan areas on the planet. This really is quite amazing for this type of apparently small town. However, because of its great geographic size, you will find only 500,000 occupants living within the city. The location is heavily forested, and together with glaciers and mountain tops, Oslo has a lot of unliveable area.
 
The title Norwegian originates from the term Norvegr, meaning the best way to its northern border. More than one 1000 years back, this term was utilized through the Vikings to explain the shipping route of the nation. Norwegian is frequently known to because the Land from the Night time Sun due to the lengthy days throughout the summer time. Within the winter season, it's not uncommon to possess over 17 hrs of straight darkness however in the summer time, daylight lasts over twenty hrs. The scenery in Oslo is attractive, and locations to hike, ski, and explore abound. The local people are friendly, and also the territory is different and wonderfully exciting.
 
Docking & Local Transportation
Cruise ships can dock at several piers in central Oslo including Akershus Fortress (1/4 mile southeast from City Hall), Filipstadveien (1/2 mile west of City Hall), or Vippetangen (south of Akershus). Akershus has a small cruise terminal building with shops, tourist info and a small snack bar. You can check the schedule here (Port Info -> Cruise List) http://www.oslocruisenetwork.no/ or http://www.oslohavn.no/en/passengers/passenger_traffic/cruise/
 
A 24 hour transit pass covering bus, tram, metro (T-bane) and ferries in Zone 1 (Oslo) is 90 NOK and can be purchased at 7-Eleven, Narvesen convenience stores, or ticket machines. Ticket machines may require chip and pin credit cards for payment. Within zone 1, single fares are 30 NOK prepaid or 50 NOK onboard and good for all journeys within an hour (June 2014). You may only need to take public transport if you want to go to Vigeland Sculpture Park, Holmenkollen Ski Jump or the Viking Museum. Most other sights are within walking distance of City Hall.
With the high prices on everything, consider buying an Oslo pass which give you free entrance to most museums and a public transit pass. This pass can be purchased from the Tourist Info Center on the street directly in front of City Hall. An adult pass is 290 NOK (145 NOK children and seniors) for 24 hrs. Update June 2014 - the tourist info booth inside Akershus Cruise Terminal is not open this season and discounted passes are no longer available for cruise passengers. http://www.visitoslo.com/en/activities-and-attractions/oslo-pass/
City Sightseeing (250 NOK) and Open Top Tours (225 NOK) run hop on, hop off (HOHO) buses with a stop at Akershus Cruise Terminal. http://www.citysightseeing.no/oslo http://www.opentopsightseeing.no/
 
 
Attractions
 
Akershus Fortress
Rising above the Oslofjord on the promontory of Akersnes sits the majestic Akershus Fortress, built by Håkon V at the end of the 13th Century. Take your time to wander the grounds and ramparts with their wonderful harbor views before exploring the quaint chapel with its tomb of Håkon VII (1872-1957) and the remains of the original medieval castle. Also located in the grounds is the Museum of the Norwegian Resistance. Be prepared to spend a few hours here learning about the German occupation of 1940-45. If you've any energy left, head over to the Norwegian Armed Forces Museum in Oslo's old Arsenal with its displays of weapons and exhibits illustrating the history of the Norwegian forces and the defense of Norway down the centuries. Address: Akershus Festning, 0015 Oslo -- Official site: www.forsvarsbygg.no/festningene/Festningene/Akershus-festning/English/

Oslo Cathedral
Although consecrated in 1697, Oslo's Cathedral has been rebuilt and renovated numerous times. Its tower was rebuilt in 1850, while its interior was renovated soon after the end of WWII. Notable features include the main doorway with its decorated bronze doors, as well as the ceiling paintings by H. L. Mohr, the Baroque pulpit and altar (1699), and the stained glass by Emanuel Vigeland. Afterwards, be sure to visit the Oslo Bazaar along the old church walls. Dating back to 1841, these fascinating halls are now occupied by galleries, cafés and antique dealers.
Address: Karl Johansgt. 11, 0154 Oslo -- Official site: www.oslodomkirke.no/artikler/1183/oslo-cathedral/

City Hall
Oslo's enormous City Hall (Rådhuset) is undoubtedly one of the city's great landmarks. This imposing square building, built of concrete faced with brick, was designed by Arnstein Arneberg and Magnus Poulson and has two towers, one of them adorned with a huge clock face. One of the towers houses the 38 bells that can be heard chiming throughout the harbor area. Along with its fascinating facade with its sculptures and reliefs, the interior is also worth a visit, boasting a rich fresco created by Henrik Sørensen, Per Krohg, Edvard Munch and other famous Norwegian artists.
Address: Rådhuset, 0037 Oslo -- Official site: www.radhusets-forvaltningstjeneste.oslo.kommune.no/english/

Aker Brygge
Built around an abandoned shipyard, Oslo'a Aker Brygge area is the heart and soul of the city. Bustling and vibrant day and night, its stunning architecture - that magnificent blend of new and old that perfectly compliments Norway's stunning natural beauty - is everywhere on display, and everywhere breathtaking. It's estimated that 12 million visitors find their way to Aker Brygge every year, drawn by its sea-front boardwalk, fine shopping, great restaurants, and cozy year-round patio bars with their snug rugs and fireplaces. While visiting, be sure to pop into the newly opened Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art. The museum consists of two buildings: one for its own collection of works by such greats as Andy Warhol, Damien Hirst, and Jeff Koons, the other for rotating exhibitions.
Address: Bryggegata 9, 0120 Oslo -- Official site: www.akerbrygge.no/nb-NO/Engelsk.aspx
 
National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design
Oslo's National Museum is a must-see, and in fact incorporates a number of exhibition venues across the city, so be prepared to spend time exploring them. The venues include the National Gallery (Norwegian artists from the 19th Century to the present, including J. C. Dahl and Edvard Munch); the Museum of Contemporary Art (modern Norwegian and international artists); the National Museum: Architecture (historical themes through to contemporary architecture); and the Museum of Decorative Arts and Design (design and crafts through the ages). Address: Kristian Augusts gate 23, Oslo -- Official site: www.nasjonalmuseet.no/en/

Royal Palace
Located high up on the northwest end of Karl Johansgate, the Norwegian Royal Palace, built in 1825, dominates the cityscape. Although the impressive 173-room building is not open to the public, visitors are free to wander the grounds and gardens or watch the regular changing of the guard. Just to the south of the palace sits the Norwegian Nobel Institute, where the Nobel Peace Prize is presented. Address: Bellevue, Oslo -- Official site: www.kongehuset.no/seksjon.html?tid=28697&sek=27322

Vigeland Sculpture Park
The iconic Vigeland Sculpture Park - the largest such park in the world - is one of Norway's most famous tourist attractions. Open year round, this unique sculpture park is Gustav Vigeland's lifework and contains 650 of his dynamic sculptures in bronze, granite and wrought iron. Vigeland was in charge of the design and layout of the park (completed in 1949), placing the majority of sculptures in five themed groups along a 2,800 ft long axis. The oldest is the fountain group, depicting the cycle of human life, beyond which can be seen the 55 ft high Monolith comprising 121 intertwined human bodies. (If you're interested in learning more about Vigeland the artist, visit the Vigeland Museum near Oslo's Municipal Museum.) Address: Nobels gate 32, N-0268 Oslo Official site: www.vigeland.museum.no/en/vigeland-park

Natural History Museum & Botanical Gardens
Oslo's Natural History Museum - consisting of the Geological Museum, the Zoological Museum and Botanical Gardens - is Norway's largest natural history collection. The Geological Museum includes minerals, precious metals and meteorites, plus an impressive collection of dinosaur skeletons, while in the Zoological Museum you'll find dioramas of Norwegian fauna. Best of all, however, is the exquisite Botanical Garden. Founded in 1814, the garden features 7,500 different plant species from Norway and other parts of the world, 1,500 of them located in the beautiful Rock Garden with its waterfalls. Address: Sars gate 1, 0562 Oslo Official site: www.nhm.uio.no/english/

Munch Museum
Dedicated to the life and work of Norway's greatest painter, Edvard Munch (1863-1944), the Munch Museum contains a vast collection of paintings, graphic art, drawings, watercolors and sculptures from the great artist's life. Containing almost 28,000 works of art in addition to personal effects and tools - even his private library - the museum also puts on special exhibits devoted to particular aspects of Munch's work through film screenings, concerts, guided tours and lectures. Address: Tøyengata 53, 0578 Oslo -- Official site: www.munchmuseet.no/Dokument/For-English-visitors

Oslo Opera House
Home to the Norwegian National Opera and Ballet as well as the National Opera Theatre, the 1364 seat Oslo Opera House seems to almost want to slip into the city's harbor, an effect exaggerated by its angled exterior surfaces. Clad in Italian marble and white granite, the Opera House is the largest cultural building constructed in Norway since Trondheim's Nidaros Cathedral in the 14th Century. In addition to its many performances, visitors can also participate in a variety of interesting public programs and behind-the-scenes tours… and, of course, enjoy a stroll on the building's roof. Address: Kirsten Flagstads Plass 1, 0150 Oslo -- Official site: www.operaen.no/en/

Ultima Contemporary Music Festival
This annual festival takes place mid-October and includes everything from operas to orchestral and chamber concerts to recitals. Numerous musical institutions collaborate to organize the festival, which includes a competition for new orchestral works that draws highly acclaimed composers and musicians from all over the world. Address: Slottsgate 3, N-0157 Oslo -- Official site: www.ultima.no

Festival of Chamber Music
Held in Oslo each August, this annual month-long festival includes dozens of chamber music concerts drawing internationally acclaimed musicians from around the globe. Performances take place in the spectacular Akershus Fortress, with the stunning Oslofjord as a backdrop. Taking place the same month and in the same location, the Oslo Jazz Festival is another huge draw for musicians and fans alike. Address: Byngning 3, 0015 Oslo -- Official site: www.visitoslo.com/en/whats-on/festivals/major-festivals/oslo-chamber-music-festival/
 
Local Interests
The Kunstindustrimuseet is situated at St. Olavs Gate 1 (22/03-65-40) and it is a luxurious museum of applied art. It had been initially built in 1876, which makes it among the earliest museums in Norwegian. The collections and exhibits are excellent, and also the glass and silver in the 18th-century are perfect. The Scandinavian crafts and furniture are fabulous, much like the pieces of art. Probably the most impressive works within the Kunstindustrimuseet may be the Baldishol tapestry in the thirteenth century. Concerts, led tours, and lectures are held here, and when you walk-through the museum having a docent you will get some good insight and understanding in regards to the good reputation for everything that's displayed.
 
Going for a ferry to Bygdøy is definitely an very popular activity for site visitors to Oslo. The Bygdøy is really a peninsula that's the place to find many Viking shipwrecks, and also the area is really as fascinating because it is exciting. This region is really a tremendous historic site, filled with the Norwegian Folk Museum along with a scenic sailboat harbor. The Norwegian Folk Museum is situated at Museumsvn. 10 and hosts numerous medieval structures and exhibits. You will find 225,000 independent features inside this assortment of more compact museums, and there's something to interest everyone. Every aspect of Norwegian existence are investigated, including info on the heritage and culture of Oslo and Norwegian. You will find outstanding pieces of art and woodcarvings, great tapestries, as well as an ornate chapel that goes back towards the 1200s. Forestry and agriculture are large business in Norwegian, which industries are displayed and described thorough, articulating the particulars of every. Following a couple of hrs in the Norwegian Folk Museum, you'll have acquired a lot of insight concerning the lives and loves from the Norwegian people.
 
The Viking Ship Museum
Small museum containing the remains of three Viking ships (only one fully intact). A few other museums are nearby including the Kon Tiki and Fram Museum. To get to the area, take the ferry from Pier 3 by City Hall (free with Oslo Pass or transit pass).
(22/13-52-80), situated at Huk Aveny 35, supplies a fascinating consider these ancient ships from the high sees. Here you marvel at spectacular and ornate ships, maintained for more than 1200 years. Nearby may be the wonderful Kon-Tiki Museum (23/08-67-67, world wide web.kon-tiki.no), situated at Bygdøynesvn. 36. Located within the museum may be the famous Kon-Tiki raft, in addition to fascinating exhibits exhibiting Polynesian items and artefacts collected in the travels of Thor Heyerdahl.
 
The Vigeland Sculpture Park 
One of Oslo's top tourist attraction and free (check opening times). Make sure you find the crying baby statue. Take tram 12 from Aker Brygge or Radhusplassen stops behind City Hall to Vigelandsparken. Distance from City Hall is about 3km if you decide to walk instead (40 min by foot). http://www.vigeland.museum.no/
(23/49-37-00), situated at Nobelsgate 32, is really a tribute towards the work of Gustav Vigeland, Norway's most celebration sculpture. Here you are able to stroll via a wonderful park and marvel in the greater than 200 sculptures displayed.
 
Norwegian's take great pride within their ski-jumping heritage and success. The very first ski jump competition happened in 1892 in the Holmmenkollen Ski Jump facility (22/92-32-00), situated at Kongevn. 5 in Oslo. Visit this fascinating sports center, the place to find the 1952 Winter Olympic ski-jumping competition.
 
Dining
You can now dine internationally without leaving the city of Oslo. The influx of foreigners in recent years has led to the growth of Mexican-, Turkish-, Moroccan-, Chinese-, Greek-, and American-style restaurants. Among European cuisines, French and Italian are the most popular. The biggest concentration of restaurants is at Aker Brygge. This former shipbuilding yard on the harborfront is now the smartest dining and shopping complex in Norway.
 
Not all restaurants in Oslo are newcomers. Some have long been associated with artists and writers -- the Grand Café, for example, was the stamping ground of Henrik Ibsen and Edvard Munch.
 

At most restaurants, a 15% service charge and 20% value-added tax are included in the bill. It's customary to leave some additional small change if the service has been satisfactory. Wine and beer can be lethal to your final bill, so be careful.
 
Family-Friendly Restaurants
 
Brasserie 45 -- This traditional-with-a-twist bistro has a good menu for little ones, especially the picky eaters among them.
 
Mamma Rosa -- The best place to fill up on pasta dishes or one of ten kinds of pizzas, each a meal in itself.
 
Najaden -- As if being in the Norwegian Maritime Museum weren't enough for kids, those under 12 can also enjoy an elaborate summer lunch buffet here for half-price.
 
Santino's Spaghetteria -- Delectable pasta and pizza, served in a quirky setting that kids should love.
 
Dining Secrets of Oslo
 
One of Oslovians' favorite pastimes is visiting Aker Brygge. Formerly a dilapidated shipbuilding yard, the futuristic complex now combines more shopping, entertainment, and dining diversions in one area than anywhere else in Norway. Many visitors, some with children, come here to check out the restaurants and cafes, watch the people, and listen to music in the bars. Part of the fun is strolling through the complex and picking a restaurant. Norwegian food is served along with a representative selection of foreign food offerings, including American. In the summer visitors and locals fill the outdoor tables overlooking the harbor. There are also many nightlife options. To reach Aker Brygge, take bus no. 27 or walk down from the center west of the Rådhus.
 
A local favorite here is the Albertine Café & Bar, Stranden 3, Aker Brygge (tel. 22-83-00-60), an informal place on the wharf's edge, offering a panoramic view over the harbor and Akershus fortress. This place consistently serves some of the freshest and tastiest oysters in Oslo. You can drop in for just a hamburger or a full Norwegian seafood dinner. It's also an easy place for meeting singles.
 
In front of the Rådhuset, you can join Oslovians for a special picnic treat. From 7 to 8am, shrimp fishermen pull their boats into the harbor after having caught and cooked a fresh batch of shrimp during their night at sea. You can order shrimp in a bag (it comes in two sizes). Seafood fanciers take their shrimp to the dock's edge, remove the shells, and feast. The fishermen usually stick around until they've sold the last batch, saving just enough for their families.

Klosteret is situated at Fredensborgvn. 13 (23/35-49-00) featuring wonderful French and Norwegian cuisine. The décor is wonderful, and you'll fall deeply in love with the rack of lamb and boiled halibut. The vegetarian dish during the day is usually a good choice, as well as in the autumn, be sure to request about the overall game dish during the day, because it is usually scrumptious. Blom are available at Karlk Johans Gate 41B (22/42-73-00) and it is open for dinner and lunch. Individuals from around the globe hold this restaurant in high regard, and also the dining atmosphere is to establish inside a smorgasbord style. Your wine list is among the very best in Oslo.
 
Billettsentralen (81/53-31-33) is where to determine ballet, opera, and theater in Oslo. You can buy tickets by calling the dpi, and also the performances are often held weekly. Smuget are available at Rosenkrantzgate 22 (22/42-52-62) and it is the most popular dance club in Oslo. Meals are offered until 3 a.m., the party area is active, and also the cocktails are potent.

Shopping
Explore Oslo shopping on your own. If time is really tight, though, and you don't have the leisure to look through all our offerings, we present our Best Shopping list for Oslo. Here, we distill the best businesses down to a special selection of ten. These places promise a stellar experience and a taste of the city that you just can't miss.
 
Karl Johans gate -- If Oslo has a main street, bustling Karl Johans gate definitely qualifies. The broad, pedestrian-friendly street begins at the Royal Palace and runs southeast before it terminates at Oslo S. Among the must-stops for international travelers along its course are the enormous Tanum bookstore and the Paleet shopping complex. In addition to the hundreds of stores, restaurants, and bars located along Karl Johans, street vendors and entertainers gather their fair share of attention too. T-BANE: Nationaltheatret and Stortinget
 
Tanum -- One of Norway's largest book stores, Tanum is located in the Paleet shopping center. It carries a comprehensive selection of gifts, cards, souvenirs, and videos, making it a great place to pick up items for folks back home. As for books, it's possible to spend hours upon hours perusing the shelves for subjects ranging from local history and the arts to travel and literature. International travelers are happy to find many French, German, and English editions available. T-BANE: Stortinget or Nationaltheatret (22-41-11-00)
 
GlasMagasinet --  Ever-busy, this high-end department store features a wide inventory of housewares, gift items, apparel, shoes, fine cosmetics, furnishings, toys, and even duty-free shopping. GlasMagasinet has been an Oslo favorite since the 1730s, and over the years, they've perfected the art of retailing like few places have. In fact, the store is so well organized that once you step inside, you'll feel as if you're not shopping at one big store but at several small specialty shops. T-BANE: Stortinget; BUS: 37 and 46 to Stortorvet; TRAM: 10, 11, 17, and 18 to Stortorvet (22-90-87-00)
 
Norway Designs -- This stylish gallery has devotees all over the world because it showcases such an impressive inventory of glassware, ceramics, and pottery. Many items are fashioned by well-known Norwegian and European designers like Astrid Hansen, Irene Harvik, Johan Mæhlum, Ole Martin Skau and Karl Olav Olsen. In addition, the store's sleek shelves and fixtures feature beautiful designer clothing and hand-painted silk accessories. T-BANE: Stortinget or Jernbanetorget (23-11-45-10)
 
Steen & Strøm -- Norway's largest and, perhaps, most popular department store, Steen and Strøm features five floors filled with high-quality fashions at prices that fit just about any budget. Displays of handmade clothing, particularly sweaters, appeal to most international travelers, and Steen and Strøm is careful to promote Scandinavian designs in everything from pewter dinnerware to Norwegian art. T-BANE: Stortinget (22-00-40-45)
 
Oslo City -- The capital city's largest and busiest shopping center is located near Oslo S, the airport train terminal, and the exclusive Radisson SAS Plaza. Its multiple levels are packed with a wide assortment of specialty shops and fast food restaurants. As a result, Oslo City's ultra-sleek retail venues and corridors see traffic (most of it from international travelers) throughout the business day. T-BANE, TRAM or BUS: Jembanetorget/Oslo S (81-54-40-33)
 
Bærums Verk -- An old ironworks village located almost an hour west of Oslo, intimate Bærums Verk offers a unique shopping experience. The entire village has been restored to match -- and even surpass -- its original 17th-century charm, and where once stood workshops for skilled laborers are now more than 60 cozy galleries, craft shops, boutiques, and bookstores. The village also features an ironworks museum, and the rocky stream that runs through the village affords extraordinary opportunities for a snapshot or two. If you need to grab something to eat while shopping, the village's Pannekakehuset serves pancakes par excellence. BUS: 143 or 753 to Bærums Verk (67-13-00-18)
 
Paléet -- Arguably the most exclusive address on Karl Johans gate (excepting, perhaps, the Royal Palace!), this center features an exclusive array of shops and restaurants. Opulent and sophisticated, the complex is worth visiting if for no other reason than to enjoy its architecture -- after entering from Karl
 
Johans, visitors are greeted by a grand glass-and-slate atrium that features a bronze statue of a female ice skater. Make no mistake about it: Paléet is where Oslo's movers and shakers shop for everything from suits and sweaters to cosmetics and leather accessories. T-BANE: Stortinget (22-03-38-88)
 
Byporten Shopping -- Located next to Oslo Central Station (a.k.a., Oslo S), this ultra-modern, glass-and-steel structure is one of the capital city's newest, trendiest shopping centers. More than 70 exclusive specialty shops and stores occupy two levels, and the center features a handful of restaurants. Angled glass along the ceiling permits plenty of natural light during the day, and the atrium-style interior features contemporary art. Meanwhile, wide, uncluttered corridors give shoppers the impression that they're not in an enclosed area. Byporten also features an underground car park. T-BANE, BUS or TRAM: Jernbanetorget/Oslo S (23-36-21-60)
 
Senterkontoret Aker Brygge
One of Oslo's most popular shopping destinations, Aker Brygge is a unique waterfront complex that hosts some of the city's finest shops, restaurants, pubs, theaters, galleries, and cultural diversions. The center sits near the mouth of the Oslofjord -- on the site of a former ship-building yard -- and is home to beautifully renovated buildings that unite former and current architectural styles. Lovely public areas lead visitors right up to the waterside, and it's not uncommon to find boats tied up along the docks, their crews busy browsing the sales racks of nearby stores. T-BANE: Nationaltheateret; BUS: 21, 30, 31, 33, 54, 71 to Aker Brygge; TRAM: 10 and 12 to Aker Brygge (22-83-26-80)
 
Majorstuen - Bogstadveien and Hegdehaugsveien
Here you will find clothes and shoes for every taste and budget. The area has a good mix of high-end and budget chains offering the latest trends and classic men's and women's fashion.
 
Grünerløkka
Small independent shops with clothes, pottery and handicrafts line the streets in this area. This is the place to look for the latest from young, Norwegian designers. Mathallen food hall at Vulkan has a fantastic selection of Norwegian specialities and high-quality import food products.
 
Grønland
Many of the stores here are run by immigrants, who offer Oslo's best selection of fruits, vegetables and spices. You can also get bargains on exotic textiles here. Grønland is also home to one of many Fretex second-hand shops in Oslo.
 
David-Andersen is situated at Karl Johans Gate 39 (24/14-88-00) and it is a hundred years-old jewellery chain that has some heavy-duty products. The pieces are extremely beautiful that even uninterested males will marvel in their brilliance. Viking and Norwegian folklore have affected the silver designs, and they're breathtaking. Hadeland Glassverk (47/61-31-05-55) is really a wonderful spot to see glass formed and blown, and there's a shopping complex that sells a variety of magnificent glass work.



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