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Culture and Countryside – Introducing Oslo

By Ryan Merrifield

Posted: 23rd September 2014 15:02

Oslo is incessantly contradicting itself.  A historic past is offset by a burgeoning café and bar culture, whilst a cosmopolitan atmosphere is contrasted by tranquil greenery – Oslo has enough intrigue to keep even the most seasoned traveller second-guessing. 

Forever associated with the legacy of the Vikings, Oslo is of course a city dedicated to preserving its heritage.  With over 50 museums and galleries, you’ll be spoilt for choice (and most likely begging the Norse Gods to grant you wings of speed so you can see as much as possible.) One of the museum must-sees is the National Gallery (Nasjonalgalleriet) that features Norway’s largest range of Nordic, Norwegian and international art – though most visitors are most interested in the arresting works of Edvard Munch.  Anyone who has ever pondered the subtle pros of the Viking life (beer and horned helmets.  What’s not to like?) should check out the Viking Ship Museum, whilst the drama students amongst you can impress your lecturers (and annoy your peers) with a boastful tale of your visit to the Ibsen Museum, housed in the playwright’s former home.  There is more to this city than museum’s however; Oslo is also known for its excellent night life options that range from famed operas to tiny back street haunts that rock out until dawn. 

There is no doubt that Oslo is the cosmopolitan centre of Norway, but one thing the locals love about their city is how easy it is to leave it behind.  With the (incorrectly named) Oslofjord on one side of the city, and miles of green fields and woodlands the other, the wider Oslo region is perfect for outdoor pursuits.  From gentler pastimes such as walking, hiking and sailing, to high octave adventures like rock climbing and winter sports, the rolling green fields of this city will keep you as entertained as its cultural heart.  

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