Everyone loves Norway. I can say that with a lot of confidence. Most people I know can say something positive about Norway – even though most of them have never even been!
Oslo is the capital of Norway, and it features much of what makes Norway such a beautiful, fascinating place. If you’re looking have a vacation somewhere in Europe in the near future, you should be considering this wonderful city. Here are some of the reasons why.
Credit: Howard Lewis Ship
The Fram Museum
There are a lot of people who think instantly Arctic exploration when they think of Norway. This probably has something to do with its rich history of such activity. There are also the Fjords and the Arctic Svalbard to the north! If you’re at all interested in such things you should check out the Fram Museum. It’s filled with information about polar explorers. It also houses the world’s most famous polar ship the Fram. There are also a bunch of polar bear taxidermies. Of course, if you want to see some real polar bears, you can consider a tour of Svalbard.
Credit: David Johnson
The Viking Ship Museum
The Fram Museum may have indicated to you that the Norwegians really like ships in their museums. It’s an accurate assumption – at least four of the museums in Oslo house full-size ships! And if you like ships, you must see the Viking Ship Museum. It houses intact Viking ships that date back to as far as c. 840 CE! So it pretty much does what it says on the tin, really.
Credit: Aktiv I Oslo.no
Helvete and the Black Metal Museum
Want to spend a little time on the darker side of Oslo’s history? Thousands flock to Oslo every year to visit some of the historical hotspots of extreme metal music. More specifically, people come here to see the birthplaces of black metal. The history of the early Norwegian black metal scene often sounds like the tales of some demented criminal underworld. (Aside from being a whirlwind of dark creativity, it also involves murder and church burnings.) This is why it captures the attention of people who don’t even like black metal all that much and think it’s a little silly.
If you’ve had enough of the doom and gloom of black metal history, why not visit a beautiful, floral park? Frogner Park and Vigeland Sculpture Park. These places are filled with amazing scenery, as well as plenty of impressive (if strange) art. A lot of the vacation home rental spots available in Oslo are very close to one gorgeous park or another. While Frogner Park and the Vigeland Sculpture Park are the biggest names, you definitely won’t be spoiled for choice!
A wide array of festivals
I can’t think of another place in Europe that is home to quite so many festivals. Maybe London, at a stretch. But Oslo is host to an incredible number of annual festivals, and whatever your interest, there’s a festival for it. Opera? Dance music? Films? Literature? Heavy metal? Oslo has a festival for it. Whatever time of year you’re going, there’s bound to be a fascinating festival taking place.