Best Things to See and Do in Oslo, Norway

Vigeland Sculpture Garden, Oslo, Norway, Nancy D. Brown
Visit Oslo, Norway’s Vigeland Sculpture Garden

Are you visiting Oslo, Norway for the first time? Here is a list I created on the best things to see and do in Oslo, Norway. The first place I take a visitor from out of town is to The museum peninsula Bygdøy or The Oslo Opera House in Norway.

The City Center around the main street Karl Johan and Lake Sognsvann. is also worth a visit.

When I crave Oslo cuisine, I eat fresh shrimps on the pier. Some of my favorite Oslo restaurants are Restaurant Olympen and Restaurant Yayas in Vika, Norway.

To escape work I go to the forest area Nordmarka north of the city center or Hovedøya, an island outside the Oslo city center.

For complete quiet, I can hide away at

  • Emmanuel Vigeland Mausoleum
  • Langøyene, an island outside the city center
  • Hovedøya, an island outside the city center
  • Østmarka, a forest area southeast of the city center
  • The Museum of Contemporary Art

If you come to Oslo, Norway, get your picture taken at the Vigeland Sculpture Park.

If you have to order one thing off the menu at Restaurant Solsiden or Restaurant Lofoten order the “seafood tower” plate.

Oslo, Norway, Lutefisk, cod, Nancy D. Brown, travel
Fish is an important staple in the Norwegian diet. 

As a child of Norwegian ancestry, I always dreaded bringing “Lutefisk” to school when it came time to share my Norwegian heritage.. Oslo, Norway’s traditional Christmas dish is “Lutefisk” – cured cod. Personally, I think it is an acquired taste.

Oslo, Norway is my one stop shop for Riktige leker (right toys) andHadeland Glassworks

When I’m feeling cash-strapped, I go to Punjab Tandoori, Saigon Lille, Restaurant Mucho Mas, Restaurant Sult or Café Sara in Torggata in Oslo, Norway.

For a huge splurge, I go to Hotel Continental with Restaurant Eik, Restaurant Lofoten at Aker Brygge or Tjuvholmen Sjømagasin. I had the opportunity to dine at this restaurant and it was amazing. Excellent quality seafood, outstanding service and a wonderful location in Oslo, Norway. Don’t miss it.

Viegland Sculpture Garden, Angry Child, Oslo, Norway, Nancy D. Brown, travel
Oslo, Norway’s Angry Child at Vigeland Sculpture Garden

Photo ops in Oslo, Norway include The Opera House, Aker Brygge, Akershus Fortress, The Vigeland Sculpture Park and The Holmenkollen Ski Jump.

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The best vantage points are taken by walking to the top of Grefsenkollen, Holmenkollen or Ekeberg in Oslo.

The most random thing about Oslo is the Oslo Vegetarian Festival – follow them on Twitter. National Day May 17th  and Oslo Jazz Festival.

In Oslo, an active day outdoors involves biking, golfing, skiing, swimming and wind surfing. The forest Nordmarka is great for exploring.

My favorite walking route is along the river Akerselva, from Frognerseteren to Sognsvann in Nordmarka.

Oslo’s best museums are Norwegian Museum of Cultural History (Norsk Folkemuseum), The National Gallery, The Munch Museum and The Nobel Peace Center.

For a night of dancing, go to:

  • Pigalle
  • Smuget
  • In the Grünerløkka area
  • Onkel Donald (for students)
  • Barbeint (clubbing)

Along the street Torggata is the spot for late night dining or Sushi at Rockefeller.

To find out what’s going on a night or on weekends, read:

  • Aftenposten
  • Dagbladet
Oslo, Norway, aerial view, Nancy D. Brown, travel
Oslo, Norway from above

You can tell a lot about Oslo from visiting:

Maridalsspillet in Maridalen

    Gamlebyen, the Old Oslo

In the spring you should attend a football match or see the museum peninsula Bygdoy beaches.

In the summer you should visit the islands outside the city center.

Øyafestivalen @oyafestival
Norwegian Wood Music festival

In the fall you might enjoy: The Botanical Gardens or Lake Sognsvann

In the winter you should go to:

  • Holmenkollen area
  • Skiing in Tryvann Vinterpark
  • Restaurant Frognerseteren
Oslo, Pasteries, Norway, Nancy D. Brown
For a great breakfast treat in Oslo, Norway

There are several hidden gems in Oslo:

  • Kampen, area in the city
  • Emmanuel Vigeland Mausoleum
  • Restaurant/pub Blå along the Akerselva river

For a great breakfast treat or espresso, go to:

  • Boccata Café/Restaurant
  • Grand Café in Grand Hotel
  • Åpent Bakeri

Just outside of  Oslo you can visit the picturesque city Drøbak where the Christmas House is and many cozy cafés.

  • Restaurant Bølgen & Moi at Høvikodden Art Center

The best way to see Oslo is to walk the main street Karl Johan or grab a city bike.

If you have kids, you won’t want to miss the Museum of Science and Technology

READ  Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown’s 2013 Year in Review – What a Trip

What are your favorite things to do in Oslo, Norway?

Thanks to Visit Oslo for assistance with the best things to see and do in Oslo, Norway. I was a guest of Visit Norway. Article, YouTube video and photos by Nancy D. Brown

8 thoughts on “Best Things to See and Do in Oslo, Norway”

  1. Hi
    Will include that Viking Ships are also found at Bygdøy, and take an umbrella with you. The weather is unstable in Scandinavia. 🙂

  2. joel clement nyarandy

    i love norway and its dream is studying for my university education after my high school results are out.thank you nancy for the encouraging resourceful information

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