Happy Sunday! I came home exactly a week ago from beautiful Oslo Norway and this is how long it took me to go through all the photos and decide how I wanted to document the trip. After London, I flew to Oslo to meet with Elisabeth, my Swedish bestie. We've had an incredible week full of sunshine and happy memories. Since we've done so many things, I decided to only share the highlights with you (and there are MANY highlights). Oslo is now in my top 3 of favourite cities, and I hope one day I'll have the chance to explore more of Norway. Before I start with the highlights I just wanted to sum up what I've seen...
- Oslo is the city of sculptures
- Norwegian girls are so stylish! A few trends that seem really cool right now and that every girl in Oslo is wearing are: printed wrap dresses or skirts (often from Ganni) and Superga platforms.
- Kindergarten kids in Oslo are always outside and they seem to be doing all the same sightseeing activities as we are. And they are cuteeee!
On our first full day, we embarked on a tour of the Oslo Fjord for two hours. It was a bit cloudy and cold for the first part of the tour but we had these cozy blankets that we could use to wrap ourselves into. We've seen beautiful islands with cute houses, boats, majestic nature and so much more. We left this boat tour feeling so overwhelmed by the beauty of the area. I think if you had to do one paid activity in Oslo, it should be that one, so worth the money!
Det Kongelige Slott & change of guards
As always, we could not visit Oslo without stopping by the Royal Palace as it's a tradition we have to see the change of guards whenever we're in a new country. The Palace is simple and much less crowded than other ones I've seen before, but still lovely. The gardens were calm and beautiful.
Walk on the Opera House at Golden Hour
At the end of our exploring day, we decided to visit the Opera house and it was around the time of Golden Hour. As we walked up on the roof, we saw a group of young girls doing hip-hop and it was so cool with the sun setting in the background. The view from the top was incredible, you could see the new part of the city being built on one side and the boats and busy streets on the other one.
As fans of the Norwegian series SKAM, it was important for us to visit some of the locations where the show was filmed. Our favourite stops were Hartvig Nissen Skole on the west side of the city and also Noora's apartment. On our last day we also spotted Thomas Hayes, the actor who plays William, at the H&M Loves Music Oslo event. So it all went full circle!
Sørenga Sea Water Pool
Our week in Oslo happened at the same time as the European heat wave so the temperature was around 30 degrees every day. We discovered an area called Sørenga where you can swim and it's right in the city center. Let me tell you that this place was filled with locals, so much so that it was hard to find a place to sit. But the water was refreshing and the view was beautiful, so we were happy!
Another ritual my bestie and I have when we travel together is to have a theme party inspired by the country we're in. So we put on some Norwegian music (with a few Swedish songs), got our flags out, cooked some local food (actually we ate mostly Kvikk Lunsj chocolate bars and other Norwegian candies), and wore our SKAM-inspired t-shirts that said 'Noora + William' and 'Isak + Even'. Although it was a party of 2, we had the best time!
A night in Aker Brygge
Aker Brygge is the Nyvhan of Oslo. This neighborhood is right by the water and has trendy restaurants and bars. It's the best place to be to see the sunset. For one of our last nights, we decided to treat ourselves to a delicious meal there and we got dressed up. We ate at Olivia Aker Brygge, an Italian restaurant and the food was delicious.
Ganni is one of my favourite brands, and it is Scandinavian! In Canada, we can only find the clothes online or a very limited selection of them at Hudson Bay so I was excited when I learned that there are two actual Ganni locations in Oslo. I dragged Elisabeth at least four times to the stores so I could look at the clothes and try them on. I treated myself to a beautiful blouse (on sale) with one of their signature prints that I will cherish forever. From now on, Ganni clothes will always bring me back to this week in Norway.
Ibsen Museet & Apartment Tour
Elisabeth and I where hesitating between visiting the Munch museum and the Ibsen Museum (as the weather was so nice and we didn't want spend the week inside), but as we both love literature and both read his play A Doll's House, we decided this museum was more fitting for this trip. My favourite part of the visit was when we got a private tour of Ibsen's apartment. The guide was lovely, we learned so much about the author's life and we left the place feeling even more curious about his other plays.
After the museum we found this very cute restaurant called Lorry. I decided to eat something a bit more Scandinavian than the other days so I chose the Skagenssmørbrød, which is like an open sandwich with shrimps, eggs and dill. I would 100% come back to this place for the lovely ambiance, the delicious food and the great service.
On the topic of food... one of our go-to places for quick food is a place called Lett. It is part of a chain and they serve raw/healthy food. Every time I went, I made my own salad mix (with Norwegian salmon) and the girls working there were always laughing at my combinations but it was delicious and fresh and nourishing.
As part of the Norwegian/Scandinavian tradition, we made our own tacos on Friday for 'Taco Fredag'. We had so much fun preparing them, dancing to more Norwegian songs, drinking rosé and talking for hours. It shows how you don't need too many things to have the best time!
On June 2nd was the Oslo Musikkfest and we decided to go to the shows organized by H&M at the Vulkan Arena. There was a beauty section where we could get braids done (that's also where we saw Thomas Hayes). We saw some great artists perform like Emma Jensen, Emilie Adams, Hanne Mjøen and Ezzari. It was free we only had to sign up in advance on the website. Such a fun night and I didn't want the day to end!
Other things we've done were to visit the Botanical Gardens, take a ferry to Hovedoya Island for an afternoon swim (which was beautiful), visit the statues at Vigeland Park, have Fika at a lovely bakery called åpent bakeri, visit Norli (a bookshop), and so much more! I highly recommend visit Oslo. Scandinavian capitals all have something special to offer and I was far from disappointed with the Norwegian one. It's definitely a place I want to go back to.