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Oslo Travel Guide - Sights and Museums
Transportation: Streetcars, busses and subway. Schedules are posted at the stop signs. The best area for service is Karl Johans Gate or Stortingsgata. You can buy a 1-Day Travel Ticket or the Tourist Card... for transportation and museums... for 1,2,3 days. Transfer as often as you like during a 1-hour period. Sr. Disc. May be only for Scandinavians.

Tryvanns Hill is the highest point in Oslo... a view of 500 miles. Take the electric train #1 to Holmenkollen Line to the Voksenkollen stop. Walkup the hill to the tower... 15 min. Daily 9:30-10 PM.

Viking Ship Museum: On display is three Viking Ships that have survived 10 centuries. They were apparently used as burial chambers for well-to-do Vikings. You'll be amazed that the Vikings may actually have crossed the Atlantic in vessels of this sort. The Museum is very enjoyable. Daily 10-6. Bus 30 from Bygdoynes.

Kon Tiki Musuem: The balsa wood raft on which Thor Heyerdahl floated more than 5000 miles from Peru to Polynesia is exhibit here - plus the Papyrus Boat RA II and statues from Easter Islamd. Daily 10-6. Take bus 30 or a ferry from Pier 3 (Boat 91).

Fram Museum contains the vessel Fram used in the Polar expeditions of Nanen and Amundsen. Located on Bygdoy near the Kon Tiki Museum. Bus 30 or ferry from Pier 3.

Vigeland Sculptures: Gustav Vigeland was a Norwegian sculptor who created these controversial but very impressive sculptures. The whole park is filled with 650 pieces, but what you go to see is the giant phallic sculpture in the center. On this piece, he has created the life cycle of man, from birth to death. The statues are utterly explicit and you'll have a grand time trying to figure out who's doing what to whom. Don't be embarrassed when you make a discovery. For the best photos visit the park on a sunny day. It's open daily... 24 hours. Tram 2 from National Theatre or Bus 20. You'll see the major sculpture on the horizon before your bus arrives.

City Hall is a lavishly decorated building, which has become the symbol of Oslo. Completed in 1950, its central hall contains the largest painting ever done. Norway's most famous artist, Edvard Munch has works here. Daily 10-2. Sun 12-3. Mon/Wed evening 6-8 PM.

Oslo Cathedral dates from the 17th century. See the stained glass windows by Vigeland. Daily except Saturday.

Royal Palace is located on a hill in city center. The gardens are lovely but no visits are allowed inside the palace. There's also a changing of the guard but it's rather shabby and one shouldn't take time for it.

Akerbrygge: 60 Shops... 35 Restaurants. City center. M-F 10-8. Sat 10-6.

Akershus Castle is one of the oldest historical monuments in Oslo. It's located on top of a steep cliff jutting into the water. Built in 1300 by King Magnusson, it was a fortress as well as a royal residence for several hundred years. Today the castle is used for Government State Occasions. Daily 10-4, Sun 12:30-4. Take bus 29 from Bankplassen or Tram 12,13,19 from Wesselsplass.

Nobel Building: Take note of this beautiful building across the square from the Royal Palace.

Munch Museum contains virtually the entire life's work of Edvard Munch - 1,100 paintings. He bequeathed the paintings to the city, which built this stunning building to house them. You may not like the paintings, but you'll find they do make a permanent impression on you. Do see them if only for a short visit. Included is one very famous work "The Scream". Daily except Mon 10-8. Bus 29 from City Hall. Tram 1,2,3,4,5 to Toyen, or subway from Central Station to Toyen stop... follow signs.

National Gallery contains a nice collection of the French Impressionists... along with some excellent Munch's. Located just behind the University. Daily 10-4. Sat/Sun 12-3. Wed/Thu Eve 6-8.

National Museum of Contemporary Art: This new museum is located in an old but interesting building. International art. City center Bankplassen 4. Daily except Mon. Tram 12,13,19 from Kongensgate.

Norwegian Folk Museum: An excellent outdoor collection consisting of 170 old wooden buildings grouped in courtyards. They represent different parts of Norway. You'll see craftsmen and people in native costumes. Hours vary. Check. Bus 30 from University Square.

For scenery: For a view of the Fjords take bus 36 from Town Hall and a one-hour ride to Sundvollen. There's also a 50-minute cruise around the harbor, departing on the hour from 10-9 PM from Pier 3. A 2-hour fjord cruise departs from the same pier.

Sonja Henie-Niels Onstad Art Center: This famous center is a museum housing the private collection of Henie-Onstad - over 200 famous painting. It's also a cultural foundation. Today the collection has grown to over 7000 pieces. The park and sculpture garden afford fantastic views of the water. Also on display here are the medals and trophies Ms. Henie won for her ice-skating. The trip is well worth the time for the scenery. There's a cafeteria on the premises. Take bus 151,153,161,162,251,252,261 from Central Station to Hovikodden... 25 minutes.
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Author of this article is Gene Gill. For more information visit his website: Gene Gill Miniatures.
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