New to Oslo, visiting for some days or spending your summer in town?
Either way this summer is a great opportunity to be a local supporter of your community and discover the plenty of gems that Oslo has to offer.
A young, vibrating city, Oslo is perfectly sandwich between the sea and the endless expanses of forest called Marka. Beaches, islands and forest are all easily accessible just a short ride by public transport, bike or walk.
After the easing of social distancing Oslo is opening up with lots of new restaurants, coffee places and after years of a huge building development the town is showing a new face open to the sea, where public spaces have been reclaimed for the pedestrians and the bikers.
Where to eat in Oslo
Farine is a local eatery in the heart of the trendy Kampen neighbourhood. Surrounded by old wooden houses, painted with bright coloured facades, at Farine you can eat from breakfast to dinner in a newly renovated interior that keeps its original details. All bread, cakes and pastries are backed at their kitchen and in the summer there is outdoor sitting in the sun.
Pasta Fresca is our favourite place to eat in town. Handmade pasta of all sorts and forms is made in this tiny kitchen by Per Erik, the most friendly chef in town. Eat from their daily menu or get some fresh pasta, sauces and toppings to cook back home.•St Pauli’s is a local favourite. An outdoor, German inspired beer garden Sitting at the top end of grunelokka, st. Pauli’s crowd is a multicultural as its beer menu and it is run by the same creative minds behind Lysløypa.Here you can sit to catch the sun, play games and eat light meals that match their beer selection. Good for families with kids or to hang around with friends.
Places to visit:
Oslo is full of cultural and artistic happenings that will keep you busy even when the weather turns grey.
The Bjørvika Deichman library is a huge favourite and definitely the one we use the most. The brand new building at Bjørvika is a perfect addition to a series of modern buildings that are turning Oslo into an architectural destination. This is a must for anyone looking for a break for a day out, get inspired by their huge book collection, catch up with news and magazines and enjoy some breathtaking views of the fjord.
Grass Roots Square Go wander in the town’s centre and find yourself in this little, quiet square. Here you will find a painstaking brass sculpture collection by Do Ho Suh. Hundred of tiny little human figures assemble discretely in the square will surprise you by their detail and expressiveness.
And while in town head to Aker Brygger, where Oslo meets the sea. By the shore you can see the new National Museum building set to open next year, it will housed Norways huge collection of art, architecture and design. Museum´s members can buy online tickets to see the museums interior before its official opening.
Other museums and galleries worth visiting in Oslo are:
Astrup Fearnley Oslo´s contemporary museum has an excellent gift shop and is located by the shore where you can swim and relax.
Henie Onstad is another great art space with great outdoors areas that make a day visit worth.
Kistefos sculpture park is an incredible collection of interactive pieces spread around an immense forest. A favourite for kids because of its enormous climbing park while you sit and enjoy their outdoor coffee area.
What else to do:
There is plenty to do outdoors in Oslo
- Go for a walk around Østensjøvannet Lake
- Visit Vigeland park and the Bymuseet in Frogner
- Take an architecture tour around Barcode
- Check out the new Munch Museum building before its opening in the autumn, plus its surrounding trendy area Bjørvika
- Go for a hike to Ekeberg Park, see the many sculptures dotted around this huge park, let the kids play in the climbing area and don't miss the views of Oslo from the many viewpoints around the park. All this just a few tram stops from the city's centre.
- Take a dip in the many beaches and lakes easy accessible in town.
- Kids would love to visit this little animal farm in Kampen: Kampen Garden
*Thanks to all the friends that contributed to this guide, to the ones that joined me to try out eating places and shared their little gems from Oslo.
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