They say there is a cruise itinerary out there for everyone but nothing can compare with an itinerary that includes Norway’s capital city Oslo.
Some cruise lines actually start and finish their itineraries in Oslo making a pre or post cruise stay a great option. However, others include Oslo as a port of call. In 2014 there was 133 port calls and an estimated 260 000 passengers visiting the city.
Oslo boasts over 50 museums and numerous other places of interest. This compact city makes a do it yourself tour very easy. Here are a few ideas to wet your appetite!
ASTRUP FEARNLEY MUSEUM
This contemporary art gallery features unique and unusual works. Figures such as Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin’s works are featured here amongst many other abstract pieces. The museum is divided into two sections; one with a permanent collection; the other offers rotating exhibits.
The largest recreational park in Oslo is not only a lovely place for a stroll but is filled with art as well. The Vigeland Sculpture Park has striking statues of human figures such as its famous monolith of 121 human figures towering in the sky.
The waterfront area is a great way to spend the day as there are dozens of trendy cafes and bars. With a large amount of shopping opportunities and the sailboats floating in the harbour this really is the place for chilling out and people watching and the best part is it’s a car free zone.
Norway is famous for its polar expeditions and the most famous ship of them all is the Fram. The Fram once made trips up to the Arctic but today, it resides in the centre of the Fram Museum. Located in Bygdøy, the museum features various artefacts from the ship such as authentic nautical devices and stuffed versions of polar animals. The lives of Fridtjof Nansen, Otto Sverdrup and Roald Amundsen are also chronicled.
As an up and coming neighbourhood, Grunerlokka contains many memorabilia shops as well as designer stores and various restaurants. All of this serves as an interesting contrast to the bohemian lifestyle and urban style that makes up the majority of the area.
HOLMENKOLLEN SKI JUMP
Norway’s “most visited tourist attraction” is the Holmenkollen Ski Jump. Visitors can see some of the best views of Oslo and the Oslofjord from its high altitude. Its Ski Museum is the world’s oldest skiing museum offering 4000 years of skiing history through audio visual displays.
KARL JOHAN’S GATE
This cobble stoned street features a large amount of trendy stores, cafes and upmarket restaurants and holds numerous parades throughout the year.
NOBEL PEACE CENTRE
The Nobel Peace Prize laureates and their contributions to earning the award are focused at the centre. Visitors will be able to see exciting touring exhibits, audio visual displays as well as films and lectures
THE ROYAL PALACE
Located in the heart of the city, the Royal Palace is home to the Norwegian Monarch King Harald V, who has ruled since 1991.Perfect for photo opportunities, the palace also offers one hour tours through the State Rooms during the summer.
THE VIKING SHIP MUSEUM
View three original 1100-year old Viking ships. The ships were discovered and excavated in the early 20th century. Besides the ships, on display there are many artefacts that were required for the Viking’s long jaunts to parts unknown.
The season for cruise holiday makers tends to be seasonal from late spring to mid autumn. Cruise lines visiting this Scandinavian jewel in 2015 are Costa, Crystal, Cunard, Holland America, MSC, Norwegian Cruise Lines, P&O, Princess, Oceania and Royal Caribbean.
Written by Veronica Shine