We have reached March and we at OsloWay are sure you have noticed the same as we have: The days are finally getting longer and we get a bit more sunshine in our lives! The time is right for getting outside again and what better way to start the outdoor season than by discovering Oslo on foot? In this article, we will introduce you to five of our favourite self-guided walking tours in Oslo that you can easily fit into a free afternoon.
Vigeland Sculpture Park
Firstly, we have to mention one of our absolute favourite places to take a stroll in Oslo: Vigeland Sculpture Park. Gustav Vigeland (1869-1943) is probably Norway's most well known sculptor and Vigeland Sculpture Park is dedicated to his work.
The sculpture park, which is part of Frognerparken, has more than 200 of Vigeland's sculptures on display. They are a little weird, thought provoking and certainly a sight to see! With millions of visitors each year, Vigelands Sculpture Park is one of Norway's top attractions and the park's fantastic sculptures have fascinated visitors for many years.
What's more, if you would like to extend your walk beyond the limits of the sculpture park, you can certainly do so. Frognerparken is one of Oslo's biggest parks and invites visitors for leisurely strolls around kilometers of pathways.
The park is open all year round and admission is free.
Local tip: Did you know that Gustav Vigeland had a brother who was also a renowned artist? Unlike his brother who has dedicated his life to sculptures, Emanuel Vigeland's work consist mostly of paintings, frescoes and stained glass windows. However, many consider Vigeland's masterpiece to be his own mausoleum. Emanuel Vigeland's Mausoleum (also called Tomba Emmanuelle) is located in North-West part of Oslo and is definitely one of the most interesting hidden gems!
The Stovner Tower
For a slightly different kind of walking tour, why no take a walk along the treetops?
The Stovner Tower is one of Oslo's newest attractions and invites visitors on an excitiong adventure to see Oslo's forests from above!
The path is located at Stovner, in the northeastern part of Oslo. From the nearest metro station Stovner, it is only a short walk to the tower by following the signposted walking paths.
The treetop walk itself spans 260 metres and is designed to feel like a walk up into the sky passing treetrunks and foilage to reach the top. After you ave completed the treetop walk we recommend you to continue your walk in he surrounding forests with their extensive network of walking paths. But make sure to return when the sun goes down to witness the tower's beautiful illuminations.
Stovner Tower is open all year round and admission is free.
One of Oslo's greatest advantages is the city's proximity to the Oslofjord. Why not take advantage of it whaen you feel like taking a walk? Only a short ferry ride from Aker Brygge you can reach Hovedøya, one of the beautiful islands that can be found all across the fjord.
Walking around the island will give you a nice afternoon walk and the island has much to offer. North on the island you can visit the ruins of a Cistercian monastery from 1147. You can also see two cannon batteries from 1808 and two gunpowder depots from when the island belonged to the Norwegian army. One of the military buildings, Lavetthuset, is now used for exhibitions.
Additionally, Hovedøya offers the possibility to swim and take your stroll through the island's nature reserve.
Ferries can take you to Hovedøya all year round, all you need is a Zone 1 Oslo transport ticket.
Ekebergparken Sculpture Park
We already learned in Vigelandsparken that outdoor sculptures are a big thing in Oslo. Therefore it is no surpise to find yet another sculpture park on our list.
Ekebergparken lies only a fw minutes by tram awy from the centre of the city and is a wonderful way to get some fresh air while seeing even more interesting sculptures. It is more of a hilly forest than a park most of the time so you will have no problem getting some proper excercise here. The artworks are spread all around the park so you will be sure to see another exciting sculpture behind the next bend.
In addition to the sculptures, you can also find traces of Oslo’s long and diverse history in the park, from rock carvings and ruins from the stone age to cemetery's that date back to 900-400 BC.
If you want a more in-depth experience of the park, you can also get a guided tour to make sure you get all the interesting details about the park and its history.
Ekebergparken is open year round and admission is free.
If you fancy a bit more of a longer walk, we would recommend taking a trip to Øyungen lake. It is not quite a hike, as the whole way runs along a well maintained gravel path but the trip is a little longer than the other ones we have introduced.
The Øyungen lake walk is a great way to feel all immersed in nature while staying close to the city.
It is an easy walk along the Skarselva which is still suitable for both adults and children as the whole distance is only about 5km. Meanwhile, you get a great taste of Oslo*s beautiful nature and the forests that surround Oslo.
To get there, take bus 54 (Kjelsås) from Oslo Station to Godals vei. There change to number 51 (Maridalen) and exit at Skar.
So there you have some of our favourite walking tours in and around Oslo that you can easily visit yourself. We hope that we could inspire you a little to get outside and make the most of your surroundings! And if you want to get a more complex experience in Oslo, have a look at our tour offers and explore Oslo with great local guides!