The City of Oslo (Norwegian) is Norway’s population, political, and economic center. It may not be its tourism center, as other ports have better access to Norway’s natural landscape and rural countryside. Cities like Trondheim and the Port of Bergen are more “Norwegian” in character. However, the Port of Oslo has many sights worth seeing and a vibrant nightlife worth enjoying.
The Port of Oslo’s climate is relatively temperate due to the warm air carried on the Gulf Stream. Summers are pleasant and mild, with a few hot spells and lots of sunshine. Winter is around freezing temperatures, and snow may be abundant in the nearby forested areas. The Port of Oslo is a wonderful place for winter sports.
The Royal Palace in the Port of Oslo can be toured in the summer. One of Norway’s most important buildings, it was constructed in 1824 and taken into use in 1849 by King Carl Johan. This is where the King leads the Council of State, has audiences, and holds official state dinners. It is also where visiting foreign dignitaries stay.
Holmenkollen is the ski jump on the west side of the Port of Oslo, rebuilt for the coming 2011 World Ski Championships. First opened in 1892, it has been rebuilt many times. Over a million people visit the Port of Oslo’s Holmenkollen every year, and the oldest ski museum in the world is co-located with the ski jump.
The Nobel Peace Centre contains an exhibit for every one of the 119 winners of the Nobel Peace Prize as well as some stark exhibitions. Here, you can learn about Alfred Nobel and view films in the Cinema the Eye. Children can learn how they can contribute to peace, and everyone will be inspired by their visit to the center.
The Port of Oslo’s Norwegian Maritime Museum contains large collections of boats and ships. It tells the story of the impact of Norway’s seafarers across the world. The panorama film “The Ocean – A Way of Life” takes you on a cruise along Norway’s beautiful coastline. Built on the edge of the Oslo Fjord, the museum overlooks the city and is next door to two other popular museums.
Next door to the Maritime Museum is the Port of Oslo’s Kon-Tiki Museum containing Tor Heyerdahl’s famous balsa rafts, Kon-Tiki and Ra II. Although it was not his only adventure, Heyerdahl made history with his world-famous 8000-kilometer voyage on the Kon-Tiki balsa raft from South America to the Tuamotu Islands. In addition to the boats he used, the museum contains artifacts from Easter Island and short-term exhibits on sea-related and ethnographic topics.
The Henrik Ibsen Museum in the Port of Oslo is the completely-restored writer’s apartment, with the original interior, colors, and décor. Carefully documented, the artifacts contained in the museum have been contributed by the Ibsen family, particularly Ambassador Tancred Ibsen.
The Port of Oslo’s Viking Ship Museum is a treat with two wonderfully-preserved 1100-year-old Viking ships. The museum contains many other Viking artifacts and a real Viking burial chamber, including the ancient skeletons!
When Edvard Munch died in 1944, he left his remaining works to the City of Oslo. Munch is perhaps most famous for his painting “The Scream,” but he had a profound impact on European art and Expressionism. This Port of Oslo’s Munch Museum contains about 1100 paintings and 4500 drawings by the artist. Visitors will enjoy the displays as well as films, concerts, guided tours, lectures, and of course the museum shop. A café offers light meals.
Travelers who want to visit the Port of Oslo by sea can find a comprehensive list of scheduled cruises on the Cruise Compete website.