Out and about in Oslo

Yesterday, our second full day in Oslo, we decided to see a few more things on the ‘What to do in Olso’ lists. We drove into the city because Greg had purchased a wireless broadband modem and it hadn’t been registered properly when he bought it, so he took it back to Netcom shop for them to sort out. We found parking on the street surprisingly inexpensive, ranging from $1.60/hour to $4.00/hour depending on where we wanted to park, and we found empty spaces with no trouble. We didn’t venture into any parking stations, so I’m not sure how much they cost.

First tourist stop of the day was the Viking Ship Museum on Bydgoy Peninsula, which is also home to several other museums and 2 beaches. Every major Scandinavian city we’ve visited has a Viking museum, so we thought we’d better go and see one. This one was excellent with just enough (and not too much) to see, and we were surprised that the entry fee was just $12. The museum has 3 Viking ships, which were all pulled ashore and  used as burial tombs for people of high rank. They were all buried at least 1000 years ago, and then unearthed in the late 19th-early 20th century. In addition to the ships, a lot of Viking artifacts, tools, implements, 3 sleds and a carriage were unearthed from one ship which contained the remains of 2 women, one of whom was thought to be a queen, the other thought to be her maid.The Vikings believed that the dead needed to take things with them to the afterlife and provided everything they could think of, including horses and other animals. I did wonder if the maid had been dead or alive when she was buried with her mistress. You can read more about the ships and their contents here. As most of you would have guessed by now, we’re not great museum-goers, but this one was really good and I’d strongly recommend it to anyone visiting Oslo.

Next stop was Vigeland Park, a very large green space near the city centre that showcases the sculptures of Gustav Vigeland. There are over 200 granite and bronze sculptures depicting people at all stages of life, doing and feeling a wide range of activities and emotions. We sat under a row of trees and ate lunch and did some people-watching. There seem to be a lot more (mostly) women out and about with babies & toddlers in pushers here than we see at home. I guess it’s a combination of good weather and a generous paid parenting scheme.

And so on to our last touristy thing for the day, up to the hills just above central Oslo to see the beautiful old timber Holmenkollen Hotel and the terrifyingly high Holmenkollen Ski Jump, where the annual World Ski Jump Championships are held in March. The Ski Jump is also used as a concert venue.

Dinner last night was what our Lonely Planet guide tells us is Norway’s national dish -  Grandiosa, a brand of frozen pizza. I think they were only partly joking. Those things are stacked up high in every supermarket we’ve visited. We bought one, but when we went to heat it up, of course it wasn’t as big as the box, so I nipped down to the Kiwi supermarket on the ground floor of this apartment building and bought another one. They tasted fine, although it’s a long time since I’ve had a frozen pizza at home.

Viking Ship, this ship was thought to be a ceremonial ship for calm waters

Viking Ship, this ship was thought to be a ceremonial ship for calm waters

This Viking ship was a strongly built serious ocean going craft

This Viking ship was a strongly built serious ocean going craft, the boards are riveted to the hull with iron rivets.

Just some of the many bronze sculptures

Just some of the many bronze sculptures

Lots of tourists at the stone sculptures

Lots of tourists at the stone sculptures

Norway's food of choice Grandiosa Frozen Pizza

Norway’s food of choice Grandiosa Frozen Pizza

9 thoughts on “Out and about in Oslo

  1. Lots to see in Oslo Judy! and the weather looks good for you to site see x

    • Today was gorgeous! We spent most of it in the car, trying to sort out a flat tyre (more on that later), but the temp was around 22C, and I think it’s forecast to be 26 later in the week

    • I should have counted them, there were probably 15+ bronze statues on either side of the bridge over the lake, and then loads more granite one near the tall column.

  2. The Vikings I know had quite a lot of impact in the part of the England that I was born in after the Romans left like the Romans they where smart people for the times not as smart as the Romans though would have loved to have seen those boats the car that you are now driving I know is far above your previous one only sold by Australian Motors in Adelaida for good money plenty of NUDES thats because they are so rugged up most of the time little to see.

    • Those boats were amazing, Ron …. and what came out of them was pretty incredible too! Greg is still finding new things on the car. It had no user manual when we got it, although it probably would have been in Swedish so that wouldn’t really have helped much.

  3. Its worth the pain for the gain the rain the cold but what sights these things remain with you for ever I guess the villages just survive on what they do within in their area have you seen any reindeer herds and are there many tourist around good looking car is it Manuel or that other thing I wont name.

    • Its manual and Automatic. I drive it almost always in automatic, but it has manual tiptronic gear changing (flippers on the steering wheel). I have just found today it has speed limiting. This is different from cruise control, you just set a speed and you cannot drive faster than that speed. Its good because there are lots of speed limits in Norway, and the default open road limit is 80kmh

    • Haven’t seen any reindeer or moose yet. There are moose warning signs on the road occasionally, and we have just started noticing a few trucks with bull …. er, moose … bars, but we haven’t seen any road kill so hopefully they’re not too common.

      Those villages aren’t just surviving, they are thriving! We went into a little supermarket in a little town a couple of days ago to buy bread, and there were at least 20 different loaves to choose from. Every supermarket we have been to, even in the small towns, are as well-stocked or better, as any of our supermarkets at home. Even the little one in the apartment building we stayed at in Oslo had a freezer full of loose, frozen cooked prawns. Fuel is more expensive in large northern towns, but cheaper in the small ones. And a frozen pizza costs exactly the same up here as it did in Oslo.

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