Oslo was a place I always wanted to go, but I didn’t know what to expect or had a very clear idea of what it’s going to be like.
I fell in love with Oslo from the first Hei Hei 👋🏼 It’s such a beautiful and grand city but it’s so calm, charming and not showing off at all (because when you are that cool and amazing you don’t need to do that, right?!) and I hope to visit it again in the future.
I had just over two days to explore this beautiful city, love for coffee, art and people watching and so with some googling, friend tips and asking locals here are my favourite things to do in Oslo on a weekend trip.
Contemporary Art museum located beautifully next to Aker Brygge it’s a joy to walk towards it. The building itself is spectacular and is facing the sea. It’s one of the most impressive Contemporary Art museums I’ve ever been. The permanent collection features Frank Benson, Damien Hirst, Jeff Koons, Francis Bacon & David Hockney (it rotates but some of the more popular pieces are always on display).
However what really blew my mind was temporary collection, exhibition I visited was called Sun and Spring in January - Next Generation in Contemporary Norwegian Art. A lot of them are women and their work is amazing (art & feminism, some of my favourite things). My favourite were Mercedes Mühleisen with a video projection // installation, Miriam Hansen & Constance Tenvik.
The space is incredibly inspiring so after soaking up all the art I got myself a cup of coffee and sketched overlooking beautiful sculptures and the sea.
The scream was not there but I went to see The Swan Princess (Russian Art 1890-1910). Being russian I grew up seeing a lot of the paintings in books, fairy tales, learning about them in school but I never saw them in person (I was born and grew up in Latvia), so it took me only a trip to Norway to explore that art and connect to that part of my identity. The exhibition intertwined Russian art of that time with Norwegian contemporaries in such a beautiful and human way. Curators explicitly wrote in the exhibition description that it was their intention, to bring people closer together through art in current political climate. I would love to visit museum again and see more of their view.
Beautiful park filled with works of Norwegian sculptor Gustav Vigeland. The park is so spacious and works as a perfect backdrop for the stuning amount of work and epic scale/quantity of Gustav Vigeland sculptures.
✏️ Lush Dive
Stationery shop. They have absolutely everything and of the best quality. I left with some sketchbooks, pencils, pencil grips, pencil sharpener and came in just to have a browse.
Excellent coffee. I mean.. they do LOVE coffee in Oslo, it’s drank mainly black and filter and that’s the way I love it. Majority of places offer fantastic cup of pour over and are happy to chat to you and ask what kind of coffee you like.
Is an establishment and I’ve heard about it before. I was recommended a cup of coffee based on the weather conditions and it was one of the nicest coffee’s I’ve ever had. Also while having a coffee outside and enjoying the sunshine a stranger approached us and asked to look after his dog while he bought coffee. Got a coffee and a dog for 3 minutes, not guaranteed it will happen to you but worth a try?
Places for walks and sightseeing:
🎵 Stop by Opera, it’s a fabulous building with incredible architecture inside and out.
👩🏽🎨 Walk around Grünnerløkka (you are guaranteed to end up there, super trendy area with lots of cute things to see and river to walk by).
🏰 Akershus Fortress
👑 The Royal Palace
🌊 Aker Brygge
🐶 Do some dog spotting, there are so many cute and friendly dogs and also cats.
🎨 For this trip and that sketch session at the Astrup Fearnley Museet I used:
✏️ Caran D’ache Luminance Pencils. I love how creamy and non water soluble they are. They come in a variety of different colours and are perfect on their own or add texture to paint.
Hope you liked my guide.
Have you ever been to Oslo? Are you going? Would love to hear what other places would you recommend visiting?