Big City Tales

It’s An All-Season Wonderland in Oslo | March 19, 2013

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A dusting of snow adds to the mystique and charm of Oslo’s very fitting ‘Winter Capital’ designation.

Oslo may hold the title of the world’s ‘Winter Capital,’ but it is truly a city that offers year-round fun!

Winter Wonderland

For those who revel in the chill of crisp Nordic air and the thrill of the great outdoors, winter is the ideal time to visit Oslo.

Fill your day with activities such as alpine skiing at Oslo Park, sledding at brake-necks speeds along the Korketrekkeren toboggan run, or ice skating at Spikersuppa Skating Rink.

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A wild ride awaits at Korketrekkeren Toboggan Park.

At night, head inside and enjoy the vibrant nightlife the city has to offer. The Frognerseteren serves up hot and cold entrees in both a casual cafe and formal restaurant setting, with the added bonus of boasting one of the best views of the city and coastal shores along the fjord.

With so many options to consider, Oslo is a perfect place to pass through the depths of winter onto the delights of spring.

Spring Delight

Oslo’s festival scene kicks off in a big way in the spring months with international theatre front and centre, along with the reggae, heavy metal and jazz musical genres being celebrated.  In June, Oslo marks National Music Day and holds an annual children’s festival.

The city’s many parks and outdoor venues come alive at this time of year: Birkelunden and Bygdoy are two of the most popular to visit and marvel in the wonder of nature as they bloom in spring and fully blossom come summer. The University Botanical Garden is the oldest of its kind in Norway and has been in operation since 1814.

Summer Oasis

As the temperatures begin to climb in early July, it’s time to hit the beach at Huk or Paradisbukta, or set sail on an Oslo Fjord cruise aboard the Christian Radich, an old-fashioned tall ship. It goes without saying that there are plenty of ways to enjoy the abundant bodies of water around the city.

Art enthusiasts will appreciate the outdoor sculptures on display at Vigelandsparken, which features over 200 pieces created by Norwegian sculptor Gustav Vigeland. The park is one of Oslo’s most popular attractions with over one million visitors every year stopping by to admire Vigeland’s body of work.

In the summer months, you can walk, jog or cycle to your heart’s content. Like other urban centres in Scandinavia, Oslo is very bike-friendly with inner city bicycle lanes and surrounding area off-road trails providing plenty of opportunities for fans of two-wheel transportation.

Fall Refuge

When it’s time to put the bikes away and seek shelter inside, Oslo’s 50 museums are a great way to be both entertained and educated. Here are just a few to consider:

  • The Ibsen Museum pays homage to Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen and includes a restoration of the home he lived in for the last years of his life.
  • Expressionist art is on full display at Munch Museum celebrating the unique perspective of Nordic painter Edvard Munch.
  • The Nobel Peace Center features permanent and rotating exhibitions celebrating the winners (present and past) of the annual Nobel Peace Prize and highlighting issues pertaining to war, peace and conflict resolution.

Whatever your personal interest, chances are you will find a museum in Oslo that will keep you happily occupied during the cool fall months and well into winter, especially for those looking for a warm refuge until they’re ready to heed the call and head back outside when the ‘Winter Capital’ beckons again!


The Oslo Opera House is another good spot to take refuge in and enjoy the arts scene during the crisp fall months.

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