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Tag Archives: Oslo Norway

During our stay in Oslo we had walked past and into the Opera House on a number of occasions. They had public restrooms so it was a convenient stop. On our last visit we decided to take a tour of the Opera House. It was well worth the time.

More photos of the Oslo Opera House can be found on my website.

The wide walkways round the Opera House offer a great stage and seating for public events.

The floating She Lies Sculpture can be seen from the Opera House.

In the lobby there is a restaurant, a glass sculpture depicting a glacier and the wooden facade of the performance area.

The back stage ares were very interesting. They had a number of performance stages as well as rooms where sets and costumes were under construction for the upcoming season.


One of our goal for our stay in Oslo was to revisit Akershus Fortress. We had walked through when we were in Oslo last year but had less than an hour  in the Resistance Museum. We took the metro into Central Station then walked over to Akershus Fortress. It is so nice to live in a town where it is easy to walk to most places or take public transportation. The origins of the fortress go back to the 13th century. It was besieged by invaders many times but never captured. In 1940 it was surrendered to the Germans after the Norwegian government fled the country. During German control Norwegian resistance fighters were executed at the Fortress. After the war a number of Norwegian traitors were executed at the Fortress.

More photos from Akershus Fortress can be found on my website.

Our first stop was the Resistance Museum. We spent several hours walking around. It is well worth the visit.

As you can see the grass is brown on the Fortress grounds. It was a very warm dry summer in Oslo. The last rainfall was in May and it was the end of July when these photos were taken.

One of the cruise ship docks are located right outside the Fortress. It makes for some interesting shots when the cruise ships are in port.


In the morning we took the metro out to Kolsås, Norway with the goal of hiking up Kolsåstoppen. There was some construction on the metro line so we had to switch trains at Majorstuen.

More photos from Norway can be found on my website.

When we reached Kolsås we wandered around a while looking for the hiking trail to Kolsåstoppen. As is typically the case the instructions for the hike weren’t the best. We finally notice a really small sign on a lamp post. The trail seemed to take us through a residential area before heading into the woods.

We hiked for about a half an hour before I decided to call it quits. It was really hot and I don’t do all that well in hot weather. I told my wife to go on and I would wait for her but she decided she would turn back with me. As we neared the start of the trail we became lost once again. We recognized some of the landmarks but it seemed that just about every house in the neighborhood had started their own trail to the main trail so it was almost impossible to find the main trail. My wife said it was OK to walk through someones yard in Norway but I didn’t feel comfortable doing it. In the USA you would like get shot doing something like that. Fortunately we did find the trail and made out way back to the metro station.

On a positive note we found the bakery I had been looking for since arriving in Oslo. On our first day in Oslo we were trying to find the metro ticked office and I spotted a beautiful bakery. Unfortunately we were not able to find it again no matter how hard we looked. I had finally concluded that I imagined the whole thing. We were wandering around in Central Station and there it was the Bit Byporten .

We then walked over to Sørenga. The area between the barcode buildings and Sørenga is under heavy development. In the second photo the new Munch Museum can be seen. The last photo shows development along the Akerselva River. It was a warm day and many folks were floating down the river into Oslo Fjord.

We walked past the new Munch Museum and walked over a floating walkway to Sørenga. Until recently Oslo the city was separated from Oslo the Fjord by highways and industry. About 20 years ago a Fjord City Master plan was developed to bring connect the city to the waterfront by placing highways under the city and removing dilapidated harbor properties. Some development had taken place before the master plan for example Aker Brygge and the Barcode Project. Sørenga is designed to be a self contained community with trendy restaurants, grocery stores and schools.

The views of the new Munch Museum and the barcode project are spectacular from Sørenga.

As I noted it was a beautiful warm day and many folks were out catching the rays of the sun. A large free public space offers floating jetties, a beach, diving boards, outdoor showers, separate children’s pool, grassy areas, a 50-metre pool with lanes, and a 200 sq metre seawater pool and it is all free and open to the public.

A couple of kids were paddling around without adult supervision. I had trouble figuring out why I took the second photo but when I looked at it closely I noticed that someone had a fishing pole out over the water from the second floor condo.

Lots of folks were floating the Akerselva River out into the Oslo Fjord.

The morning after returning from our trip to Sweden we took the underground down town and walked over to the Royal Palace. As we entered the grounds from Karl Johans gate there were some beautiful flower displays.

More photos from Norway can be found on my website.

Looks like the guards at the Royal Palace are a little more relaxed than they are in Great Britain.


We had toured the Palace earlier on our stay and during that tour we discovered there was a royal costumes display taking place in the royal carriage house. This was our main goal for the visit. It seem that when the Queen travels to different parts of the country the custom is to gift her traditional native costumes. These were placed on display in the horse barn. You can see the names of some of the horses on the back of the stall.

After touring the customs display we walked around the grounds. I was able to get a few bird photos.


After taking time out for some fall photography I’m back working on my blog from our seven week trip to Norway and Sweden. In my last post from the trip we had visited Fredrikstad, Norway. We were now on our way from Oslo to Stockholm. Our high speed train left Oslo Station at Noon. High speed is a relative term. In Japan it would probably be considered a slow speed train but it did reach 200km a few times. The trip was relatively uneventful. Our car was supposed to be a quite car but a kid was playing a video game until someone asked him to put his head phones on. Another person was listening to something on their phone.

At one point a group of French kids boarded the train. Apparently they did not have tickets and this was a ticket only train. As it turned out the train wasn’t even going where they wanted to go. Someone had told them to get on this train. The had to get off at the next stop.

More photos from our Stockholm visit can be found on my website.

This is a shot of Stockholm Central Station. We had been in Stockholm the previous summer and found there was so much to do we decided to come back for three days.

After leaving Central station we were a little lost because the roads were all under construction. This is Drottninggatan which is a walking street that the Queen’s Hotel was on.

After checking in to our hotel we headed back down Drottninggatan street looking for Gamla Stan or the Old Town. It was a beautiful evening for a walk with hardly a cloud in the sky.

The Af Chapman Youth Hostel was anchored across the water. We could also see the Grand Hotel and the National Museum.

We walked around Old Town for a while before stopping at St George and the Dragon statue

As we walked back toward our hotel we saw the Opera House along the canal.

It had been a long day and we were looking for something quick to eat. As we were wandering around we noticed a McDonald’s so we decided that would be good enough. When we entered we noticed lots electronic ordering kiosks. We had noticed them in Sweden the year before but had never encountered one in the U.S. We decided to go to the counter and order but were told we couldn’t order at the counter. Not sure why but it was later in the evening and they didn’t seem to have a lot of staff. We went back to the Kiosk and tried to order. We thought their menu seemed a bit limited (turns out we didn’t realize we had to swipe through the screens) but we did manage to order something. We tried to order with a credit card but it wouldn’t accept the credit card because our credit cards required a signature. We had to back track and select pay at the counter. We saw our number come up on the screen above the counter then it disappeared, then it came up again then dissapeared. We waited. That’s my wife in in the lower left of the second photo. Finally I went up to the counter to find out what was going on. Turns out if you want to pay at the counter you have to go up and pay when your number displays on the right side of the screen. Then you have to wait again until it moves to the left side of the screen and then go pick the order up. There seemed to be quite a few others that were confused as well.

When we came back to the states later in the summer we started to see ordering kiosks in quite a few McDonald’s. We have since started to use them so we don’t get left behind as new technology comes out.

Our last stop in Lillehammer was to Olympic Park where the 1994 Winter Olympic Games were held. While at Maihaugen we also visited the Olympic Museum Where we saw this quote from Jesse Owens.

It was a warm day and it took us a while to figure out how to get from Maihaugen to the Olympic Park. As we approached the park along the river we noticed lots of swimmers enjoying the warm weather.

The ski jumps were very impressive.

This is a shot of what is now student housing but was housing for the Olympic participants during the games.

The main facility and a soccer complex.

After visiting the Olympic site we headed back to the train station and caught the train back to Oslo. These are some of the sights along the way.

My wife catching up on the news while enjoying a free coffee on the train.


Heading into Oslo Station from the train tracks.


After a long day we waked down to Peppes Pizza to enjoy a pizza and a cold one. Things are a bit expensive in Oslo. A medium pizza and two bears cost over $50.

We have visited Oslo a number of times and on each visit we walked past the Oslo City Hall (locally referred to as the brown cheese). Our only stop was to use the restrooms on the harbor side. It never occurred to us that city hall might be worth a visit. One day I happened to read that there were free tours of city hall and we were going to be in the area later in the day so we decided to take the tour. After all city hall mentioned in Jo Nesbo’s books about Harry Hole and I’m a big fan.

More photos from Oslo City Hall can be found on my website.

The strange thing is the back of city hall faces the harbor area. We had just assumed that the back was the main entrance. Much too our surprise the main entry faces the city. One theory is that the builder had the plans upside down when they started construction and when they realized the error it was too late. Another is that the harbor was not the beautiful place it is today and they didn’t want the building facing the harbor.

On the side of the building there is a beautiful flower garden.

The facade is dominated by a beautiful clock. On both sides of the steps there are beautiful pieces of art and at the bottom of the steps a great fountain. Turns out all of this was a portent of what was to come.

Once inside the great hall we were surrounded by frescoes on all of the walls. Each telling a different story about the history of Oslo.

The second floor contains still more beautiful artwork depicting the history and culture of Norway.

This is the view of the harbor from the second floor on the back of the building.

This a free tour that should be on your list when visiting Oslo.


After visiting …. we took the ferry to our final island of the day. Hovedøya is small and the closest island to central Oslo in the Oslo Fjord. It is well known for its lush and green nature, with a wide variety of trees, bushes and flowers. For many, many years there was a military base on the island. It is a popular picnicking and swimming area.

More photos from Hovedøya can be found on my website.

I captured this shot from the ferry of a cruise ship as it was leaving Oslo harbor.

The main attraction for us was the Hovedøya kloster the Hovedøya Abbey was a Cistercian Monastery founded in 1147.

Someone was grazing goats on the island to help keep the grass down.

I photographed this small bird but haven’t been able to identify it.

Most of the people going to the island were picnicking or heading for the beach.

There are a large number of cannons on the island. Apparently they were used to defend Oslo during the Napoleonic war. Oslo is seen in the background.

The island also has a large marina. It seems that almost everyone in Norway has a boat.


After visiting Lindoy we headed to another beautiful island Nakkholmen. The island has more than 180 small summer cottages.

This is a shot of the ferry arriving in Nakkholmen. Since it was a beautiful day folks were heading out to the islands to sunbathe and swim.

More photos from Nakkholmen can be found on my website.

The small harbor at Nakkholmen.

The standard color cottages red and yellow. The color choices are restricted.

While waiting for the ferry to arrive I took the opportunity to photograph some of the wildlife.The first shot shows a couple of Barnacle Geese and the second shot is an Eurasian Oystercatcher feeding.

I can’t resist taking photos of water patterns.

On another beautiful Oslo day we decided to go island hopping on the ferries. Our first stop was Lindøya.  Lindøya is just a short ferry ride from the center of Oslo.

More photos from Lindøya can be found on my website.

Lindøya is an Idyllic island in the Oslo Fjord with around 300 summer cottages in red, yellow and green. No more cottages can be built on the island so they are prized  Possession.

There are also some of the best places to go swimming, and in the middle of the island there is a small shop and a football field. Folks seemed very relaxed as we walked around the island.

Things seemed to be a bit basic on the island. This is a shot of the private outhouses.