Travelling to Norway may seem like a pricey option right now, particularly with the state of the dollar, but traveller Stephanie Hower says you can still visit without breaking the bank.
With the Aussie dollar dipping to a serious low and the Norwegian cost of living typically among the highest in Europe, right now a trip to the land of reindeer, trolls and vikings can seem like you might be left tightening the old belt buckle.
Rest assured, it’s not all bad news. Exploring in and around Oslo can be achieved on any budget and the capital has much more to offer than funky Scandinavian architecture.
Here are five inexpensive activities to do in Oslo that’ll ensure you don’t miss out on the best bits:
The iconic ski jump stands tall over the city and remains a treasured landmark of Oslo. It was used during the 1952 Winter Olympics and today is home to championship events during the winter months. Entry into the stadium is free, however if you have the stomach for it, there is also an option to try the jump simulator for a fee of 95NOK (approx. $16AUD).
Aside from the location’s magnificent views over Oslo and the large troll statue opposite the stadium, one of the highlights (for an Aussie anyway) is watching the local ski, cross country and biathlon enthusiasts train innovatively outside of the snow season. Priceless.
Viking Ship museum
The remains of Viking ships and relics from as early as 800AD have been salvaged and put on display in a well-laid-out museum about 30 minutes from the city centre. A visit takes about an hour to look around, but it won’t disappoint, even if you haven’t watched the renowned TV series. Entry to the museum is 120NOK per adult (approx. $20AUD).
On a nice day, there is also a beach area within walking distance of the museum, which becomes a lively playground for locals in the summer time and the perfect place for a picnic afterwards.
A walk up the sides of the Oslo Opera House brings you to a picturesque viewpoint of Oslo Harbour. Whilst there is currently some construction around the harbour, the Opera House is all but an eye-sore, with a modern interior and classy bar located at the base.
Entry into the Opera House is free and prices for shows vary, but it’s worth a visit and perhaps a cheeky glass at the enticing light-drenched bar, depending on your budget of course.
The largest park in central Oslo is worth a wander, and is a popular meeting spot for locals during the warmer months. Ponder over the intriguing nude statues that line the park to the monolith as part of the Vigeland Installation and explore the many bridges and fountains hidden throughout the 45 hectares it covers.
Take a hike
The outskirts of Oslo provide a gateway to many scenic hiking trails, which are well-marked, accessible by public transport and often have cabins to stop at along the way. If you’re feeling active, take in the views of the city from above or enjoy the water views via the lakeside trails lined by lush forest.
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