Europe’s Top Cities- #22

I love Norway. Plain and simple. It is just amazing. From the Lofoten archipelago in the North to the fjords of the south it is just the most beautiful, spectacular, mind-blowing place in the world. I could drive up and down the coast, dipping into fjords and climbing up mountains forever and never get bored of the natural splendour on display. Sure, the supermarkets were a bit on the expensive side and the speeding fines made me want to sell some of my less necessary organs but the heavenly beaches and staggering mountains are just too good to ignore. I love Norway.

It was tempting to never return to civilisation but eventually we ate all the food and ran out of loo roll so had to dip into Oslo for some supplies and a few nights of pampering in an Air BnB. The busy, wide, pedestrian streets made a nice change from the quiet views of the Arctic Ocean and Oslo has a typical clean Scandinavian feel to it. A nice temperature in the September sun, safe and carefree with nice walkways around the waterfront, it is a pleasant place to be. When we arrived, we headed straight for Vigeland sculpture park, a forest of stone artwork inhabited by an array of stone penises. Created entirely by the man who lends his name to the attraction, it is one of the main tourist sites in the city and a good way to kill an afternoon as you meander through the various works detailing the various periods of the cycle of life. From Frogner Park where the sculptures live we took an aimless walk through the calm, idyllic streets and ended up at a cool, edgy market, the Shoreditch of Oslo, to look at things we would never buy and art we could never afford.

Edgy pose at edgy market

There is plenty to do around the waters edge too, such as walking up to the roof of the opera house or stopping for any delicious offer of sea food. On the east bank of the harbour lies the Akershus fortress, a 14th century castle offering a look back into Oslo’s history and a look out across the water. We walked past the Royal Palace every day on the way into the centre of town which looks proudly out into the capital, but, similarly to this blog, is a bit boring. It encapsulates Oslo nicely. It is strong, clean and orderly. It is full of history and nice to visit. Overall though, it is just a tad dull, especially when compared to the natural wonders the country has to offer outside of the cities.

The central obelisk in the sculpture park

Reasons to visit- A lot of very col museums, particularly about Vikings, and it is a pleasant place to be. It is one of the best ways to get out into the nature around it and it as incorporated nature into the city through parks and waterways.

Drawbacks- Norway is expensive and Oslo is no exception. Slightly dull if you are on a budget.

The Royal Palace
Just Norway being Norway

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