13.9.13

A day in Oslo

As you know from the previous post, we took a mini-cruise from Copenhagen and had 7 hours to visit Oslo.



 The ship docks in the DFDS teminal, a 10 minute walk from the new Opera House, a cool, modern structure built in 2008 dominating the Oslo fjord. Its shape may recall that of an iceberg emerging from the fjord, I can only imagine how beautiful it looks in the winter with the frozen water and the snow. Still, in a sunny day like the one we were there, the windows reflected the blue sky and water and it was something special.

From the Opera, going through the train station, we got to Karl Johans gate, the pedestrian street with many shops and bars/restaurants that goes all the way to the Parliament and Spikkesuppa, a nice park where yoy can find the big OSLO sign to take a sourvenir picture.

Along these streets you will also find Ibsen Sitat, Henrik Ibsen's quotes from his famous works in steel, placed in the sidewalks.

This year is the 150th anniversary of Oslo-born painter Edvard Munch's birth, therefore, the whole city is an exhibition of his works, there are reproductions of his most famous paintings in the square next to the City Hall, many events and a special exhibition of 220 of his most famous works in the National Gallery, like the Scream, Starry Night, Separation, etc. The entrance to the single exhibition is 95 NOK (around 12 euro), 130 NOK (around 16 euro) for the Munch pass, which gives you entrance also to the Munch Museum, the Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, the Museum of Contemporary Art, The National Museum - Architecture and Stenersenmuseet. No cameras or bags are allowed (not even pictures with your phone) and they're really strict about it - there are lockers in the museum.

From the museum (calculate a 2-hour visit of the Munch exhibit, more if you want to visit the rest of the museum) we walked past the Royal Palace to the City Hall, a big, yet not very attractive construction in front of the Nobel Peace Prize Center, a center where you can experience and learn about the various Nobel Peace Prize Laureates and their activities as well as the remarkable history of Alfred Nobel. The prize is awarded in the City Hall every year in December. We didn't enter the exhibitions but we visited the gift shop, where you can also find info and material about the laureates and other cool stuff.


From there, it is just a 5 minute walk to Aker Brygge, a new area for shopping, dining and enjoying a sunny day. It is a newly built area, replacing the old factories and industrial buildings with new, modern apartment buildings, shopping centers and cultural areas, such as the cool Astrup Fearnley Museum, the museum of Modern Art, built by Renzo Piano in 2012 (which includes in its collection the famous Jeff Koons's sculpture of Michael Jackson with Bubbles, his chimpanzee).

On the walk back to the harbor we passed by the historic department store Stee & Strom and took a last glance at the beautiful Opera.

Our time in Oslo was nice, although expensive, even a McMenu from McDonald's costs twice its price in Italy.

Useful (free!) apps for Oslo:
Official City App: It has information on all top atractions
National Gallery: Super useful if you're visitng the National Gallery, it contains detailed info on all Munch's works
Trip Advisor Oslo City Guide: Useful if you're looking for places to eat, shop, drink, etc.

Here's a map with the route we followed: https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?mid=zkxjWKlPsCkk.kUFPDVRpxu7o