Things to do in Oslo, Norway

Welcome to the vibrant city of Oslo, where modern architecture seamlessly blends with rich history, creating an atmosphere that’s both cosmopolitan and steeped in tradition.
Whether you’re a culture buff, a foodie, or an outdoor enthusiast, Oslo has something to offer for everyone.
So, let’s dive into the heart of Norway’s capital and explore some of the best things to do and places to eat to make your trip unforgettable.

Things to do in Oslo, Norway

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Fun things to do in Oslo

Oslo is a very walkable city, especially the city center and waterfront. There are tons of fun things to do throughout the year.

Opera House

Kickstart your Oslo adventure with a visit to the iconic Oslo Opera House. This architectural marvel not only offers breathtaking views of the city but also hosts world-class performances. Don’t forget to take a leisurely stroll on its slanted roof, offering panoramic vistas of Oslo’s skyline.

Damstredet

For a step back in time, wander through the charming cobblestone streets of Damstredet. Lined with colorful wooden houses dating back to the 18th century, this area is a photographer’s paradise.
Immerse yourself in Oslo’s history as you explore this quaint neighborhood.

Aker Brygge and Akershus Fortress

Indulge in some waterfront leisure at Aker Brygge, a bustling area filled with shops, restaurants, and cafes.
Take a leisurely stroll along the promenade or visit the nearby Akershus Fortress, a medieval castle offering stunning views of the Oslo Fjord.

Floating sauna

After a day of exploring, unwind like a true Norwegian with a floating sauna.
Nestled on the shores of the fjord, this traditional sauna offers a relaxing retreat with panoramic views of the surrounding nature.
It’s the perfect place to rejuvenate your mind and body.

Söndagsmarket

Dive into Oslo’s vibrant food scene at Söndagsmarket, a bustling market featuring local artisans, food vendors, and live music.
Sample traditional Norwegian delicacies or pick up unique souvenirs to take home.

Fjord cruise

No trip to Oslo is complete without experiencing the beauty of the Oslo Fjord.
Hop on a fjord cruise and sail past picturesque islands, lush forests, and charming coastal villages.
It’s an unforgettable way to see Oslo from a different perspective.

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The best restaurants and cafes in Oslo

Mathallen

Yummy rating: 🤤🤤🤤🤤

Foodies rejoice at Mathallen, Oslo’s premier food hall offering a tantalizing array of gourmet delights. From artisanal cheeses to freshly baked pastries, there’s something to satisfy every craving.

Oslo Street Food

Yummy rating: 🤤🤤🤤🤤🤤
Must try:
Whatever your heart desires, it’s all soo good!

For a more casual dining experience, head to Oslo Street Food. This vibrant food market showcases a diverse selection of international cuisines, perfect for sampling flavors from around the world.

My Ugly Baby

Yummy rating: 🤤🤤🤤🤤🤤
Must try:
The Smash donut

Indulge in decadent donuts at My Ugly Baby, a cozy little shop known for its creative donut creations.

HIMKOK

Yummy rating: 🤤🤤🤤🤤

Venture off the beaten path and discover HIMKOK, Oslo’s first craft distillery and cocktail bar. Sip on expertly crafted cocktails made with locally sourced ingredients, and soak in the hip ambiance of this trendy hotspot.

Vippa Food Court

Yummy rating: 🤤🤤🤤

For a taste of Oslo’s multicultural cuisine, head to Vippa Food Court. This vibrant market features a diverse selection of street food vendors serving up everything from Korean BBQ to Venezuelan arepas.

SALT

Yummy rating: 🤤🤤🤤🤤

Experience the best of Nordic cuisine at SALT, a cozy restaurant specializing in traditional Norwegian dishes with a modern twist. Situated in a historic warehouse by the waterfront, it’s the perfect spot for a memorable dining experience.

Mamma Pizza

Yummy rating: 🤤🤤🤤
Must try:
The veggie pizza with tomatoes, onion and pesto

Craving a slice of Italy? Look no further than Mamma Pizza, a popular pizzeria serving up authentic Neapolitan-style pizzas made with fresh, high-quality ingredients. With its cozy atmosphere and mouthwatering pies, it’s a favorite among locals and tourists alike.

Where to stay in Oslo

As always, the best area to stay depends on what you want to see and do.

Luckily Oslo is very walkable, so if you stay centrally it’s easy to get around.

BUDGET

Citybox Oslo

For budget-friendly accommodations without sacrificing comfort, check out Citibox Oslo. This stylish hostel offers dormitory-style rooms and private suites, ideal for solo travelers and groups alike.

BOOK HERE

Mid-Range

Scandic Oslo City

Conveniently located in the heart of Oslo, Scandic Oslo City offers comfortable accommodations and modern amenities, making it the perfect base for exploring the city.

BOOK HERE

Luxury

Camillas Hus

A charming boutique hotel nestled in the historic district of Frogner. With its cozy atmosphere and personalized service, it's the perfect home away from home.

BOOK HERE

How to get to Oslo, and getting around

Getting to Oslo is easy, with direct flights from major cities around the world to Oslo Airport Gardermoen.
From the airport, you can take the Airport Express Train, Flytoget, which will whisk you to the city center in just 20 minutes.

Once in Oslo, getting around is a breeze thanks to the city’s efficient public transportation system.
Trams, buses, and the metro network provide easy access to all corners of the city, making it simple to explore attractions and neighborhoods.

More helpful travel tips for visiting Oslo

The best time to visit Oslo

Oslo is a great destination year-round.
In spring (March to May), enjoy blooming flowers and outdoor activities with milder temperatures and fewer crowds.

During summer (June to August), you can experience long daylight hours, outdoor festivals, and boat tours, but expect higher prices and larger crowds.

Fall (September to November) offers stunning foliage and fewer crowds, while in winter (December to February) you get to enjoy fun activities like skiing and ice skating, and visit Christmas markets.

Travel costs to help you budget

Depending on how you travel, and where you want to splurge vs save, costs for visiting Oslo vary a lot. Overall, Norway is not a cheap travel destination.

A budget traveler can expect to spend around 50-75 € per day on accommodation, meals, transportation, and admission fees.
Mid-range travelers might budget between 75-120 € per day, while luxury travelers can expect upwards of 150 € per day.

And like in most of Norway, paying by card is the norm in Oslo.

transportation

Single ticket for a one-zone trip:
36 NOK

24-hour pass for unlimited travel within zones 1 and 2:
ca. 105 NOK

Taxis are also available but tend to be more expensive.

accommodation

Budget hostel:
between 200-500 NOK per person

Mid-range hotel:
typically around 800-1500 NOK per night

Luxury hotel:
can exceed 2000 NOK per night, depending on the amenities and location

foods & drinks

Dining out in Oslo can be pricey, especially in touristy areas.

A basic meal at a fast-food restaurant or food court can cost around 100-150 NOK, while a three-course meal at a mid-range restaurant may range from 300-600 NOK per person.

For budget travelers, supermarkets offer more affordable options for self-catering.

admission fees

Entry fees vary depending on the venue, with prices typically ranging from 100-200 NOK per person.

However, many museums offer discounted or free admission on certain days or for specific age groups, so it’s worth checking in advance.

What to pack when traveling to Oslo

Oslo experiences four distinct seasons, with cold winters and mild summers.
Be sure to pack accordingly, especially if you plan on visiting during the winter months.

Also, to fit everything nicely into your suitcase or backpack, use packing cubes!
They’re a game changer and make it possible for me to basically travel with hand luggage only whenever I go anywhere.

Packing cubes gift ideas for travel lovers

My personal fave:

These ones from traveldude are made from 100% recycled plastic so they’re super practical AND sustainable!

Don’t forget about travel insurance!

Better to be safe than sorry, so don’t forget your travel insurance before heading to Norway.

My personal fave:

This one from Seven Corners because you can choose the plan that best fits your trip!

Last but not least, do you need a visa?

European passport holders do not need a visa to visit Norway.

Thanks so much for reading my travel guide about Oslo!
I hope it inspires you to plan your own adventure in this beautiful city.

God tur (safe travels in Norwegian),
Nadine

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Hi, I’m Nadine

Part-time traveler with full-time wanderlust.
I travel the world one weekend and one vacation at a time, and create inspiring travel guides to make your next adventure truly epic!

I believe the answer to (almost) any question is traveling… have you tried it?

Nadine in front of the Ferris wheel in Dubai.