Archive for the ‘Oslo’ Category

Enjoy a Winter Holiday in Oslo

Oslo is at its magical best in winter. The fresh air, the tranquil forests that surround the city, the good skiing facilities and the picturesque scenery makes the city a paradise on earth and prompts vacationers from all over the world to book flights to Oslo during winter.

Cross-country Skiing

Come winter, one of the most exciting things to do in Oslo is cross-country skiing.

Oslo is one of the rare cities where the wild and pristine natural beauty of the countryside starts exactly where the city ends. Nordmarka, a dense forest, with more than 2,600 kilometres of cross-country skiing trails, is just half an hour away by tram from the heart of Oslo.

The Tryvann, also known as Oslo Winter Park, is usually open from mid-November to April. The park has an extensive range of facilities, and its own ski school that offers tours, private instruction and classes. There are 18 slopes in all, with special areas for children and beginners.

Ninety kilometres of the skiing tracks are lit up at night, allowing tourists to enjoy this attraction well into the dark. The log-style cabin rooms, complete with alpine coffee shops, add to the charm and attraction of this place.

Ice Skating

Oslo has leveraged its gift of nature well. A noteworthy attraction in the city center is a fairly large ice rink, located at Karl Johans gate, near to the Parliament building. The rink is complete with all facilities, including hot dog and waffles stand, music to suit the occasion, and more.

This open air facility is open from December to March, and provides skates on rent.

Winter walk

Oslo, situated at the head of a long fjord, is a blend of traditional charm and modern style, and the best way to soak in all the sights is through a walking tour. The appealing architecture of the buildings, the wide streets and picturesque squares, livened up by the seasonal revellers and children play in the snow, offers a unique and memorable experience unmatched elsewhere. Watching the millions of lights twinkling in the Oslofjord’s icy waters, as darkness sets in, offers a spectacular sight.

The tourist office offers guided winter walks, in English and Norwegian. These tours operate daily, starting from January and continuing until Easter, and cover the city centre, the traditional tourist tracks through the Akerselva River, and the Akershus Festning that showcase how Oslo lived during the Middle Ages.

Dining

Winter dining, amidst the biting cold and falling snowflakes, has its own charm, and the best place to enjoy it is in a place like Oslo, steeped as it is snow, and having perfect the art of winter dining over ages.

Local Norwegian food such as ribbe (pork belly), lutefisk (cod) and pinnekjøtt (lamb cutlets) make for especially warming and delicious foods. Come December, the juletallerken (Christmas plate) becomes a popular option as well.

True to style, Oslo is known for its innumerable cafes and restaurants, many of them offering excellent choices of the local cuisine. Engebret, the oldest restaurant of Oslo, located on the other side of the Museum of Contemporary Art, lives up to its reputation, and is worthy of visit to enjoy the delicious Norwegian winter cuisine.

Christmas Shopping

Oslo is a city that epitomises the Christmas spirit. The attractive window displays of the department stores, the festive music and revelry in the street, the annual Christmas fair at Folk Museum on Bygdoy with 120+ stalls selling arts and crafts and tasty specialty food, and the revellers on the street, make for a truly enchanting experience. Being near to the North Pole and drowsed in snow, Oslo is a perfect setting for Christmas and Santa Claus.

© 2012 Pat Travels the World