A Travellerspoint blog

Day 10. A Full Day of Oslo

on a beautiful, sunny Sunday

sunny 73 °F

I see that in my exuberance over the ice bar I forgot about going to the Oslo City Hall yesterday to talk about the Nobel Peace prize while standing in the room where the ceremony takes place. Only the Peace prize is awarded in Oslo, the rest in Stockholm. I thought it was pretty cool to be standing in that very room. But what was equally cool was finding out that one of the ladies has a brother who won the Nobel in Physics. Wow. I am only two degrees of separation from a Nobel laureate.

Today we bused all over Oslo. As we rode, Wyonnie talked. We drove through beautiful neighborhoods, pass several embassies and a huge marina with over 100,000 boats docked. They have to take them all out of the water when things start to ice over and put them all back in in the spring. Speaking of embassies, the American Embassy is across the street from the Royal Palace. After Sept. 11th, Norway wasn’t too thrilled with the juxtaposition so although it has taken some time, our new embassy building is farther away from the royals and will be available for occupancy soon.

The first stop was a Viking Ship museum. On permanent exhibit are three ships built over 1200 years ago. Two of them are in great shape. There are also some other artifacts that they found. This stop made me realize how little I know about Vikings. They are kinda interesting (in a plunder and pillage sort of way), so I guess I should read more.

Next stop was a living history museum where we wandered around old churches and homes in village settings which depicted life in Norway as far back as 1500. Since today was a beautiful 70-degree day, this was a very nice way to pass some time and learn more about the culture.

We drove up to see the giant Holmenkollen Ski Jump which is used for major ski competitions in the winter and zip lining during the summer months. I have never been the least bit tempted to ski (I hate cold) so this was just remotely interesting.

There were a few more stops before the last one, but they were not particularly noteworthy. (One of them was a “Labor Museum”. We didn’t have a guide and all the exhibits were in Norwegian. I went through that museum even faster than I ordinarily go through museums!)

The last stop was Vigeland Park which is the world’s largest sculpture park made by a single artist, Gustav Vigeland. There are over 200 sculptures on over 80 acres of beautifully maintained grounds. It was very popular today as the weather was beautiful and lots of people and their dogs and children were enjoying a fine Sunday.

I have to say that Oslo is a lovely city. Every open space is decorated with flower gardens and there is lots of public art. This is one of those towns that would be easy to live in. . . . .for about four months out of the year. It’s clean, it’s pretty and the people are soooo nice here, but I cannot imagine spending December through February in the snow with only a few hours of light each day. Uh-uh.

Posted by Follow Carol 13:31 Archived in Norway

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