3 Best Views in Oslo

Unlike many other European capitals, Oslo is far from flat. This means that there are also plenty of great viewpoints that offer breathtaking views. Here are our top pics:

Frognerseteren restaurant
The Frognerseteren restaurant. Photo: Skiforeningen.no
  1. Frognerseteren

    Situated at the top of the same hills as the Holmenkollen ski jumping tower, Frognerseteren is also the last stop of the tube line that carries the same name. It’s fair to say that Frognerseteren is the vantage point for many visitors, and it’s not just that: there is a traditional restaurant, several hiking and skiing tracks, a 2 km (1,24 miles) toboggan run and much more, depending on the season. You’ll get there by car (parking area just outside the Frognerseteren restaurant) or the tube (the Frognerseteren line). We recommend taking the tube and admiring the views of the city on the way.

    Frognerseteren restaurant: Holmenkollveien 200.

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    Night view from Ekeberg. Photo: VisitOslo/NLE Film
  2. Ekeberg

    Ekeberg refers to a residential area, a sculpture park, a recently renovated restaurant in funkis style and a viewpoint across from Holmenkollen and Frognerseteren. Ekeberg is closer to the city (some 10 minutes on the tram #18 or #19, or 5 mins by car) and offers a great view of the most urban Oslo, as well as probably the best view of the entire Holmenkollen area. The sunsets from Ekeberg are worth the trip up, but you will also want to experience the top restaurant and the sculpture park just behind the restaurant.

    A fun fact: The restaurant and the sculpture park are initiatives by the art-loving brewery heir Christian Ringnes  who believes that art belongs to everyone, and has donated art to public places on several occasions. He was also the person who took initiative to restore the worn-down funkis style building that now hosts a top restaurant.

    Ekeberg restaurant: Kongsveien 15.

    Grefsenkollen
    View from Grefsenkollen. Photo: Skiforeningen.no
  3. Grefsenkollen

    The viewpoint that really deserves more attention is Grefsenkollen. It’s some 20-30 minutes drive from the city center, but the view is definitely worth the visit. If you are depending on public transport, you’ll need to change busses on the way (our recommendation: check instructions with Google maps or the Ruter app), but you should reach your destination in no more than 1,5 hours. Aside from a viewpoint, the Grefsenkollen restaurant is definitely worth the trip up, but we strongly recommend you check the opening hours before you leave feeling hungry, as the restaurant is not open all evenings.

    Grefsenkollen restaurant: Grefsenkollveien 100.

     

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    View of Frognerkilen from a ship. Holmenkollen to the right, Bygdøy to the left. Photo: Oslolux.com.

    Bonus view: Oslofjord

    Many visitors arrive Oslo on a cruise ship, and therefore get to enjoy an unusual view of Oslo: from the fjord. This will allow you to see large areas of Oslo, including Holmenkollen, the city center, Bygdøy with its many museums and the Aker Brygge and Akershus Fortress area.

    This view is reserved for the ones arrive on a ship because most of central Oslo, including the areas just mentioned, is no-fly zone for drones, so you won’t be able to capture the same views with a drone camera. Check out our Instagram post for more footage of the 4th perspective to Oslo.

Oslo shopping guide: Top 10 Norwegian and Scandinavian brands

We put together a list of top Norwegian and Scandinavian brands that can be hard to find elsewhere.

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The international luxury shopping scene in Oslo has definitely evolved during the last few years, but aside from the well known designer houses there are some local – or Nordic – brands that you might want to know about. Here is a list of Norwegian and other Nordic brands that might be hard to find elsewhere.

1. Aphru.
One of my personal favourites, Aphru is what you get when you couple Norwegian comfort with Italian design and quality. Timeless pieces for women in high quality materials, designed in Norway and made in Milan, Italy. I adore the simple, timeless designs and the trademark Italian finishing. This is a brand you will not find anywhere else, but will fall in love with if you are into minimalistic design and functional materials. Why not grab one of their dresses or tops for your flight home. The store is located in shopping center Paleet, Karl Johans gate 37-43.

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by Timo store at Paleet. Photo: Oslolux.com

2. By Timo.
The feminine, vintage-inspired dresses from by TiMo have taken the fashionistas around Europe and beyond (their designs are available at Barneys in New York) by storm. The brand was founded by Ms Tine Mollatt, who is still the heart and soul – creative director – for the company. A visit to their store in Oslo (in the same shopping center as Aphru) is like a little escape: the boutique is decorated with plants and vintage items for a unique experience. Paleet, Karl Johans gate 37-43.

3. Swims
As counterintuitive as it sounds, it’s actually quite logical that the people that wanted to make galoshes (those rubber things you pull on your shoes on rainy days) orange come from Norway: it’s a country where you wear galoshes a lot. Any time of the year. However, it was while he was studying in New York that founder Johan Ringdal came up with the idea to start Swims. Swims is a living proof that weatherproof can be stylish, and with their galoshes, shoes, coats and other accessories for men and women, rain won’t ruin your day or style. The Swims brand store is in Prinsensgate 25.

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Swims rubber boots. Photo: Oslolux.com

4. Illums Bolighus
This Danish design department store Illums Bolighus is not a Norwegian brand, but carries several Norwegian lifestyle, fashion and home brands among a large number of other Nordic and international designers (for example Georg Jensen, Decadent, Iittala, Alessi). From Norwegian brands, you’ll find here for example the minimalistic ceramics from Meant, watches from the Oslo-based watchmaker Harper & Brooks and beautiful, stone-like soaps from Stone Soap Spa. Being Danish, Illums Bolighus carries a large number of Danish kitchenware, home textile, fashion and accessory brands. Definitely worth a visit! Address: Haakon VIIs gate 10.

5. Filippa K
Known for its minimalistic designs and high quality, Filippa K offers both trendy and timeless fashion for men and women. Øvre Slottsgate 11.

6. Marimekko
The Finnish design icon known for its colourful print textiles and stripe t-shirts also has tableware and accessories, such as canvas bags. Marimekko truly has redefined “timeless” when it comes to design: for example their classical stipe shirt design is over 50 years old, yet never gets old or outdated. Øvre Slottsgate 17.

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Bergans backpacks. Photo: Oslolux.com

Outdoor gear
If there is one thing the Scandinavians do better than anyone, it’s definitely outdoor gear. And it’s not a surprise, as nature is an integral part of the Nordic lifestyle – whether it rains or shines.

7. Norrøna
One of the top brands is Norwegian Norrøna. High quality, functionality and cool design come together in their collections that are designed by activity: skiing, biking, hiking, surfing and so on. They are also committed to sustainability and offer services for fixing their products, so you don’t have to buy a new one. The Norrøna flagship store is located in Akersgata 30.

8. Bergans
Another Norwegian outdoor brand is Bergans, which manufactures everything from clothing to tents, backpacks and hiking equipment. Bergans flagship store: Kronprinsesse Märthas plass 1.

9. Haglöfs
Haglöfs is a Swedish outdoor brand that makes clothing, backpacks, dry bags and also has footwear. Grensen 8.

10. Fjällreven
The Kånken backpack was designed in 1978, and is still the best selling product from the Swedish outdoor brand Fjällreven. Karl Johans Gate 19.