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OSLO

Best things to do in Oslo in summer 2022 

Whether it's new attractions, the best nature spots, or budget-friendly travel hacks, these are some of the best things that tourists and locals can do in the Norwegian capital of Oslo this summer.

Vigeland statue park.
These are our picks for the best things to do in Oslo this summer. Pictured is Vigeland park. Photo by Nick Night on Unsplash

Oslo has something for everyone, and, arguably, summer is the best time to experience the city. 

We’ve put together a list of the best activities, attractions and things to do this year, regardless of whether you are a local, just visiting, outdoorsy or prefer the walls of a museum. 

The list includes plenty of budget-friendly hacks, meaning they won’t break the bank either. 

New national museum opens  

In June, the doors to Norway’s new national museum will open to the public for the first time. Norway’s new national museum will be the combination of four other museums, including the old National Gallery. 

The museum, which hosts some of Norway’s most iconic artworks, including Edvard Munch’s “The Scream”, will become the largest museum in the Nordics when it opens. 

The museum is located in Aker Brygge, west Oslo, just a small trot from the palace and town hall. The museum will open on June 11th. You can read more about the museum here

Island hopping 

Staying in Aker Brygge for our next pick, a popular activity among the locals in the summer is to go island hopping in the island fjord. 

Once on the islands, there are plenty of opportunities for walking, swimming and picnics. This won’t break the bank either, as you can use the public transport Ruter app to the islands. While on the ferry, you’ll have a pretty good view too. So for around 70 kroner (two 1 hour singles), you can have an afternoon spent in the sun amongst the residents of Oslo rather than being crammed onto a tour boat. 

READ MORE: How tourists in Oslo can save money and live like a local

Go on a hammock trip 

Given Norway’s abundance of nature, its only fair camping would pop up. But there’s no need for all the faff of messing about with tents. 

Oslo’s residents agree, and hammocks are more common in the capital. There are plenty of great spots for a hammock trip in the capital. 

Most of them you can take public transport too, and even more, you can combine with other activities such as swimming, hiking and biking. 

READ MORE: Five great places to go on a hammock trip in Oslo this summer

Palace reopens

The Royal Palace will open its door to the public from June 25th. The castle will be open until mid-August. The castle is open for guided tours only. The tours will travel through iconic rooms such as the Council Chamber, where King meets the government, and the Great Dining Room. 

This summer marks the first time the palace will have been open to the public for two years, after closing due to the pandemic.

Tours this year will focus on the White Lounge, which has been freshly restored. Tickets start from 175 kroner. You can click here for more information

Take a dip

From central locations, a stone’s throw from the city centre to secluded lakes, or in the river that runs through the city’s centre, there are plenty of locations to take a dip in Oslo. 

Summers in Norway can be pretty warm, and with the long days going for a swim makes perfect sense. 

The overwhelming majority of spots are open to the public, and there are even a few small sandy beaches, such as Katten badenstrand. 

READ MORE: The six best places to swim outdoors in Oslo this summer 

Picnic and engagnsgrill in the park

There are plenty of fantastic parks in Oslo, and a lot of them are major attractions too. 

Vigeland Park is one of the Norwegian capital’s most famous attractions. Home to over 200 sculptures by Gustav Vigeland, designer of the Nobel Peace Prize medal and the famous Angry Boy statue, Vigelandsparken is an essential destination.

However, it isn’t the only park where you can take a stroll while admiring some sculptures. 

Ekeberg Sculpture Park, close to downtown Oslo, is another park with international-renowned works, such as Venus Milo aux Tiroirs by Salvadore Dali. 

Add to that the fact that you can have a disposable grill, engangsgrill, or picnic in the park, too, and that’s an added bonus. 

READ MORE: What are the rules and culture of park life in Norway?

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DISCOVER NORWAY

Trolltunga: What you need to know about Norway’s iconic rock formation

Planning on tackling Trolltunga? Before you start packing your bags and mapping out your journey, there are a few things you'll need to know to help get you to the top of one of Norway's most famous hikes.  

Trolltunga: What you need to know about Norway's iconic rock formation

Trolltunga is one of Norway’s most beloved and picturesque rock formations. But, getting to the top is far easier said than done, as it’ll take between 8 to 12 hours to reach the summit. 

With such a long journey to the top, it’s more than worth taking the time to learn a few things that could make your journey that much easier, even if you’re relishing the challenge of a 28-kilometre round trip. 

For those who didn’t know already, Trolltunga is found in Ullensvang Municipality in Vestland county. The closest village to the site is Odda. 

When is it a good time to tackle Trolltunga? 

The hiking season for Trolltunga is from the beginning of June until the end of September. Throughout the rest of the years, only guided hikes are available. 

As the journey can stretch between 8 to 12 hours, depending on one’s fitness, pace, how often they stop, and experience they have, starting earlier is recommended. 

VisitNorway recommends that hikes in September start before 8am due to the shorter days. However, hikers can begin their trip in June and July after 8am. 

A bad time to attempt the trip is if strong winds, heavy rain or fog is forecasted. You can check the forecast for Trolltunga here

Proper equipment is important

The iconic cliff that makes Trolltunga so distinctive is 1,180 metres above sea level, and the journey has an ascent of 800 metres or so if you begin from the main trail top, P2. 

Given the lofty heights and ascent, it’s worth making sure you have plenty of layers, as it is likely much colder at the top than at the bottom. One big warm jacket won’t cut it as you’ll be too warm heading back down. 

Good shoes are also a prerequisite. While most of the journey takes place on a trail, you’ll want good ankle support in case you fall, and even in June, areas higher up can be covered with snow and ice. 

As the weather can change quickly up in the mountains, a raincoat should also be among your equipment. 

Consider taking a shuttle bus as parking is limited and expensive

Parking can cost an absolute fortune at Trolltunga, and there are limited spaces. There are three places people can leave their vehicles: the Tyssedal, Skjeggedal and Mågelitopp parking lots. If you choose to opt for parking, your location could affect your journey’s difficulty.

Tyssedal or P1 has 220 spots. Parking there starts from 300 kroner for one day, with a journey time of 15 hours. The most popular starting point is the Skjeggedal, or P2, parking lot, which charges 500 kroner per day. This location has a journey time of 8-12 hours and 180 spaces. 

Then finally, Mågelitopp has to be pre-booked and costs 600 kroner per day. Although it only has 30 parking spaces. If you start from here, you can cut your journey by up to 3 hours. 

Shuttle busses between Odda, P1 Tyssedal and P2 Skjeggedal are run between May 13th and September 26th. 

Shuttle prices will cost 300 kroner for a return, but it saves you the hassle of finding a space. 

You can camp on Trolltunga

If you don’t want to rush, and would rather spread your journey across two days, then it is possible to camp on Trolltunga if you wish to. 

This is due to the Norwegian concept of allemannsrettenthe right to public access. This right is protected by the Outdoor Recreation Act (1957). 

Essentially this gives the public the right to travel or camp anywhere they like, regardless of who owns the land. 

However, there are still some ground rules, written and unwritten, you will need to be aware of. 

Tents should be pitched at one of the preferred sites to minimise the impact on the local environment. Additionally, you’ll need to be downhill from the trails and away from streams and lakes. There will be signs pointing out where camping is prohibited. People will need to pitch their tent on bare rock where possible too. 

No campfires are allowed between April 15th and September 15th. For more info on camping on Trolltunga specifically, click here

READ ALSO: Can I camp anywhere I want in Norway? 

Where to get the best picture

Let’s face it: If you go on a 12-hour hike to one of the most famous peaks in Norway, you’ll want to get a decent picture. 

If you are alone, there will typically always be a willing stranger prepared to take a few snaps of you, with you taking a few of them in return. 

To get a picture of yourself on the famous cliff with it protruding outwards onto the lake, you’ll need to have a second person with you. 

A cliff at the top of the hike gives a full view of the rock protruding outwards. This is also a decent spot to take one of you with the cliff in the background. 

You can see an example of how pictures from this angle look below. 

A hiker atop Trolltunga.

The Local Norway’s editor, Frazer Norwell, at the top of Trolltunga in 2018. To get pictures like this you’ll need to have someone snap shot from a side-on angle on one on the surrounding cliffs. Photo: Frazer Norwell.
 
 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Trolltunga Active (@trolltungaactive)

Expect queues 

The popularity of Trolltunga has increased exponentially over the past ten years. The number of hikers who make the trip has shot up from a few thousand annually to 80,000 each year. 

This means you can expect plenty of hikers on your journey up, and typically there will be a small queue to step foot on the cliff face. For that reason, hikers are advised not to strike more than two poses on the cliff to keep the queue moving. 

If you want to take more pictures, you can always rejoin the queue to take more. 

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