7 – Magical Oslo Fjord
It may not be comparable to the spectacular Fjord of the Western Norway. But Oslo could be the stepping stone before you are mentally prepared for the Scandinavian cost of living.
We took the flight to Moss Airport, Rygge which takes an extra hour more to reach the city center compared to if otherwise to Oslo Airport. I didn’t think an hour worth that much extra charge, you might think differently. So let me get this out of my chest early: Norway was expensive! It was about 3 to 4 times more expensive than London. When I saw a Burger King meal costs £15, I couldn’t stop wondering how much people make!
We went in April. The city was still a bit chilly but showered with pink cherry petals. We bought a 24 hour zone 1 pass which costs 90 Krone (£7). Since we were only on a weekend trip, this ticket covers the furthest place we could possibly reach, including all the water buses. Head East from the “Oslo Sentralastation” (this one word bears convenient resemblance across the continent), pass the Oslo Cathedral and National Theater, you will reach “Det Kongelige Slott” which is the Norwegian Royal Palace. The wide paved road leading to the palace reminiscent of The Mall in front of Buckingham Palace.
From the back of the palace, continue traveling East, street vendors were scattered on both sides of an idle tram track. Throng of people were scavenging bargain deals from North Face T-Shirt, Zara Shoes and MK bags. Typical street food were also featured around the corners, but we didn’t find anything appealing. At the end of the tram track, lies the Vigeland Park, which is the largest sculpture park designed by one single artist. Monolith Totem stood out from the rest indisputably. 36 human figures entangled in a mystified way, granite-like solid yet clay-like vividly. The whole park is generously covered by greeneries and thoughtfully crafted that best suit a warm afternoon walk.
If you still feel energetic, take a long metro ride towards Frognerseteren. The train will gently ascend to the highest point of the city where you will have stunning bird view of the city and also get inspired by the magnificent Holmenkollbakken – a 141 meter long ski jump arena.
On the second day, we followed the coast line to the south of central station. The first remarkable building was the OperaHouse whose tall glasses, ascending roof, under a clear sky felt nothing less than a staircase to heaven.
Then we spend the rest of the day travelling in between the beautiful islands dotted beautifully in the Oslo Fjord. There are total 5 islands: Hovedoya, Bleikoya, Lindoya, Rambergoya and Nakkholmen. All of them are coarsely covered by tall trees and harboured many private yachts. Rambergoya was my favorite. A walk along the calm, blue lagoon was spiritual.
Oslo is a beautiful city that worths a gleeful exploration.