This is part three of my series about my recent trip to Oslo in Norway. To see what I got up to in Oslo before this post, see parts one and two.
Following my coffee and pie, I took a short walk down to the Cultural History Museum. An interesting museum with displays of Viking hoards, cultural artifacts from people living in the Arctic circle and other objects from around the world, the highlight for me was the For the Love of Freedom exhibition taking place, and particularly the section looking at gay history in Norway and the history of Pride.
After the museum, I popped down to Kafe Blitz, a squat cafe and social centre serving vegetarian and vegan meals at very cheap prices near the National Theatre. I had an excellent open sandwich with mushrooms and toasted cashew nuts for just Nkr 10 per slice, but couldn't take any photos as they have a no photography inside rule. The centre is quite closely linked to anarchism and anti-fascist activism in Oslo.
After my quick snack, I dashed off to the metro to catch the train to Holmenkollen, which is a ski jump tower and ski museum on the outskirts of Oslo. It's particularly handy to go to later in the day as it remains open until in the evening in the summer. I learnt a lot about the history of skiing in Norway, but for me the highlight was really the view from the top of the ski jump tower. Breathtaking!
However, as I left the museum to head back to the centre of town, what do you know but this shiny smiling face shows up again! I swear, you can't go anywhere in Oslo without running into assorted cult leaders and their vegetarian and vegan cafes.
After a nice sleep during my final night in the hotel, I went to the Vigeland Park and Museum for the last few hours of my Oslo Pass. I really enjoyed both the sculpture park and the museum full of sketches, miniatures and life-size models of Vigeland's work.
Finally on my tour of Oslo, I went to the City Museum, handily situated next to the Vigeland Park. Small and cosy, I was particularly interested in the exhibition about women who formed relationships with German men during the occupation of Norway during the Second World War and how they were treated by Norwegian society at large both during and after the war (clue: not very well). Plus they also had an exhibition on about the theatre which included displays of some wonderful costumes and dioramas of set designs, which were fascinating as well as beautiful to look at.
Finally, I went back to the city centre and enjoyed a quick walk up to the top of the roof of the Opera House to enjoy the view.
For the last few days of my trip, I enjoyed spending time with my two lovely couch surfing hosts in the Kringsjå student area of Oslo, up to the north. We watched a couple of World Cup football games, played several board games including a new one I'd never heard of before (Takenoko) and went for a nice walk in the Botanic Gardens. I didn't get many photos except for this one, at the lake near where they live:
Finishing off my trip, I went to another Loving Hut in Oslo (by this point I had become resigned to the fact that I would be going to a lot of cafes and restaurants run by followers of ethically suspect cult/NRM leaders). I had a dish of harmony soy protein with pineapple, which was really good but came as a huge portion, which was far too much for me:
This concludes the end of my series of blog posts on my recent trip to Oslo. I had a great time out there and really enjoyed discovering the combination of historical heritage and beautiful landscapes. It has really galvanised my interest in learning more about and visiting other Scandinavian countries as well as sharpened my desire to visit the north of Norway and the Arctic region. Hopefully I'll be able to explore more of this area of the world soon!