Norwegian airlines had a great promotion last fall, $500 Oakland-Oslo return airfare! Figured it was a great chance to see Oslo on a 24 hour stopover.
Spent day 1 walking around the city, soaking it all in. Splendid views from and of the new Opera house, which is supposed to look like an iceberg, the Parliament house and the royal palace, which was a little underwhelming. I think, growing up in India with its gorgeous and elaborately decorated palaces, Scandinavian palaces always seem a little unimpressive.
Ended the day with a really expensive beer– Norway has the world’s second highest alcohol tax (after Iceland) so the locals go to Sweden to drink!
Jet lag helped with the plan to wake up early and watch Oslo come to life. Spent an hour by the water, watching the sun rise over the Rathaus, where the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony is held. The Peace museum was shut (it being a Monday).
We’ve found that one of the nicer ways to spend a short time in a city, is to go on a tour organized by the locals, who know and love the place. Its a great way to see the place, hear the stories and really feel the emotions associated with living in the city. Ideally a walking tour of the city would fit the bill perfectly, but I wanted to see a few sites that were quite far from each other so on a walking tour, I would’ve missed at least one. Finally, I went on the Oslo Select highlights tour (tickets at the tourist information center)- Holmenkollen ski jump, Vigeland sculpture park and finally the Viking ship museum.
The boat ride back was fun too, got great views of the city and Akershus Fortress.
And just like that it was time to leave, heading to Munich, where the real adventure would begin! I’d definitely like to go back, with a little more time to travel around the country- Norway has so much more to offer and I cant wait to see it all!