Oslo: Day 3

by Vincent | April 11, 2015

This was the worst day for me — when I woke up in the morning my throat felt like it had razorblades in it. So today was the day we did a bunch of stuff and I said nothing because it hurt too much to speak. Celeste talked enough for both of us.

Breakfast

As we mentioned before, we grabbed breakfast everyday at Deli de Luca because it was the most cost effective (and the coffee was good to boot).

Historical Museum

The Oslo Historical Museum didn’t open until 11am that morning so we decided to sit at the Royal Palace across the street until opening time, about 20 minutes. We admired the views and Celeste talked about something I don’t remember — hey, I was sick! I nodded and feigned interest, when in fact I felt terrible.

Once it was time to open, we headed to the historical museum, which was free with the ticket we bought for the Viking Ship museum. The museum is laid out in sections so you can choose what you want to see — it reminded us of the Tropenmuseum from Amsterdam. We looked through the ground floor and saw Viking artifacts, and I finally got to see some ancient Viking swords. Continuing through until the end of the floor, you see more arms and armaments, objects, and “daily life” rituals including remnants of a board game called hnefatafl (part of the “Tafl” family of board games).

We then made our way upstairs to see the Arctic exhibit to look at objects and learn about the daily life of the Arctic people in northern Norway. It was interesting to see clothes, tools, and other objects that they use to live.

After that, we finished by looking around a room that displayed an illustrated story about the Royal Bank and how the Nazis tried to take Norway’s gold. They even had a box in the middle of the room with tons of gold coins — actual ones from the bank.

Most of the exhibits we saw had English, in case you were wondering. TripAdvisor reviews had said there wasn’t much English but I think people might have missed that many exhibit cases had laminated sheets hanging on the side that explained what was in the cases. Just a tip!

Frognerseteren Forest & Lunch

We planned to picnic up in the forest above Oslo so we went to Deli de Luca again and picked up sandwiches to-go. Again, these were well-priced and made for an inexpensive lunch.

We took the metro (T-Bane) from the center of Oslo to the Frognerseteren stop, which is where the ski area is (and also trails to the forest). The metro was easy to use, and we figured it out quickly. Interestingly, there were many Norwegians on the metro with their skis, heading out into the Frognerseteren area for skiing. We talked to our host about this, and she said it’s just “typical Oslo.”

When we got there, we thought we’d see this:

A clear and beautiful view of the city and surrounding landscapes.

Instead, we saw this:

A dense, heavy fog — I’ve never seen a fog so heavy before. You literally couldn’t see any farther than 20–30 feet. Mind you, down in the city it was fine — cloudy but fine. It was only when we started going up into the forest where it became like this. So what you’ll see in the rest of the post are foggy photos.

We picnicked at the big lodge/restaurant which this area is known for, Frognerseteren Restaurant.

It looks creepy, but it’s cozy and welcoming.

We sat outside on one of the picnic tables and ate our sandwiches as we tried to see through the fog. I joked that I imagined some Norwegians stumbling out of the fog shouting frantically, warning us of The Thing.

Is that The Thing in the distance? No, it’s just Celeste.

Hiking the Forest

The plan had been to go hiking around the trails in the forest. Well, not only was there a dense fog, but this area is also popular for another reason: cross-country skiing. So, of course, there was snow everywhere!

All the trails were covered in 6 inches or more of snow. So instead we stuck to the roads (since I still had GPS, we could find our way) and walked near a frozen lake (that we couldn’t see) and up to the skiing area. It was a pleasant hike, and we still took photos of interesting things, such as this small brook that passed under the snow.

We also passed a humongous lumber pile.

Here are some more photos of our hike.

We made our way back to the restaurant because our AirBNB host told us that we should really stop by and eat their famous apple cake. So we did and it was delicious! If you’re looking to visit, it’s a serve-yourself cafe where you can pick what you want and then find a seat. The prices weren’t bad either, for being the only place to find food up there.

A charming Scandinavian interior

The restaurant is cozy and if you’re lucky enough to grab a window seat, you should be able to enjoy a great view over Oslo. It was quite busy, though there were plenty of seats upstairs.

City walking and Illegal Burger

Night was falling by the time we made it back to the city. We walked around casually, exploring some more and simultaneously looking for potential souvenirs. I wasn’t feeling too hot so I apologized and headed back home to take a nap while Celeste explored a bit more. She found some interesting clothing stores selling folksy clothing.

But she didn’t find anything that stood out and she headed back home because it was about time for dinner.

Near our apartment we were told was a great burger place called Illegal Burger. Burgers sounded good to us so we decided to try them out.

Our verdict? Satisfactory. Mine was good but still not the best I’ve had. I’ll take Blue Door in Minneapolis over that any day. Remember that really good burger I had in Amsterdam? It was below that. But it was much better than a burger at, say, McDonalds. Really, the burger spectrum is wide and Illegal Burger sat past the middle but not really near the top — so let’s just say 4 stars out of 5. The fries though? We loved the fries. They were crunchy but not too crunchy and went well with the mayo dip.

After dinner we headed back home to rest and watched Game Grumps until we went to bed. Oslo was different from most of the other cities we visited as everything was so expensive which meant there wasn’t much to do at night that didn’t cost a fortune (One beer? $10. Forget a pub!). While in Amsterdam we came back at 10pm every night, in Oslo we’d be home around 7pm. C’est la vie!

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