Having learnt our lesson the day before about sleepy Oslo we didn’t leave our hotel quite so early on our second day.
We were going to go and visit the Viking Ship Museum which was on one of the islands. You can take either a ferry or a bus to get there but as I was struggling to find any information about the ferry times we decided to take the latter. It was fun seeing some places that’d we’d already visited the previous day as well and some new sights as well.
When we hit the island it was a lot less urban and a lot more countryide-ish than the centre of Oslo which was nice. Much more the type of scenery you’d expect from Norway.
The bus dropped us off practically right at the door to the museum along with another couple of tourists. We were a little bit early but not the first people to arrive! Soon there was a small crowd of us and we filed in as the doors opened at 10am.
We had been hoping that the museum had a cafe – as most museums do – as we hadn’t eaten anything for breakfast but unfortunately it did not! Undeterred we had a good look around.
It’s not a large museum by any means but there are three full size Viking ships on display; the oseberg, the gokstad and the tune ship along with many of the trinkets that were found in them.
The history was fascinating, as was learning about the work the museum was doing to help try to conserve these pieces which are slowly degrading from the inside out.
As we were leaving we queried about taking the ferry back to the mainland but were told that it only runs in the summer, from April to September, which was a bit of a bummer for me.
Still hungry we went to check out a second museum, with a cafe, but unfortunately it was closed for refurbishment! We weren’t having the best of luck so we took the bus back to what was fast becoming our favourite stomping ground. Having taken a slightly different route we happened upon Pascal where we grabbed a quick bite to eat to tide us over until an early dinner we had planned prior to catching our flight.
This place specialises in chocolates and cakes and if I’d had any spare money I would definitely have tried at least two of them! Instead I opted for a ham and cheese croissant with a cuppa while Tony had a bun.
There are a couple of Pascal outlets across the city so if you’re visiting I’d definitely recommend you check one of them out.
While at the museum we’d also picked up a half-decent map and discovered from it that there was a lovely little cathedral not far from us.
It has been restored in the last five years which you can tell just by looking at it – it’s such a magnificent building. We popped inside to take a look but didn’t realise that there was a service on so quickly dipped out again.
After my disappointment at not being able to take a ferry I decided that I wanted to take a tram. So take a tram we did and hopped on the first one we saw heading in the vague direction we hadn’t been before. We only went a couple of stops so we could meander back to the hotel to collect my case but we saw some really cool pieces of art along the way.
It was almost time to head for the airport and say goodbye to Oslo but not before one last meal. Tony had spotted the Royal Gastropub when he’d first arrived and thought it would be a good place for a farewell meal. Turns out he was right and we managed to grab a seat near a lovely open flame fire.
While it specialises in burgers and beer the Royal Gastropub also has daily specials which both Tony and I ended up opting for. On a Wednesday this is a Meatball Hero Submarine sandwich with meatballs, tomato sauce, rocket, mozzarella and chips. How good does it look?
Turns out by chips they actually meant crisps but that was OK as the sub itself was so filling. My only complaint was that there was too much filling and bits kept falling out and spattering me with sauce but that probably says more about me than it does about the food! The milkshakes were also incredibly good. Had they not been quite so expensive I would definitely have had a second but I had to ensure that I had enough money to get back to the airport.
While I’d flown into Gardermoen with BA our flight back was with Ryanair and thus flying out of Rygge. It’s definitely a no frills airport with not a lot going on but there is a very cheap coach service that runs in tandem with all Ryanair flights designed to get you there in perfect time for your flight. We actually ended up getting one slightly earlier as there was no point hanging around the city centre with my humungous case (I’d come straight from New York remember, I can travel light!).
This also meant that we had time to grab a drink and split a pudding at the bar with the last of our pennies (I left with a single Krone!)
Oslo was a really great place to visit and I’d definitely consider returning again, especially if it means I can take advantage of cheap flights to the U.S. again. There is a lot to see and do in the area and we even saw people running to get the metro carrying skis so there must be places fairly close by to go skiing too if that’s your kind of thing. I was sad to say goodbye but after a week of travelling I was really looking forward to sleeping in my own bed again!
Have you ever visited Oslo? Or anywhere in Norway? How did you find it?