05 September, 2017, by Ivy Thompson
What makes Oslo such a special capital city? Amongst many things, it’s close proximity to nature. The charming city is nestled between forested hills right on the edge of the Oslo-fjord. Surrounded by tiny islets, islands, green peninsulas and rolling hills, the city practically begs you to go out and explore the scenery. The landscape around Oslo and its suburbs are as much a part of the capital as the city centre itself. Oslo has all the pleasures of a big city combined with the soul of a small town.
Unlike other capitals, the best view of Oslo is not enjoyed in from a tall building, but on top of the nearby Ekeberg Hill. You can either walk here from the inner city, or simply board the number 19-tram and get off at the Ekebergparken-stop. But Ekeberg is more than a mere hill: it’s a sculpture-park with amazing art, food and stunning views across Oslo towards the hills in the West. Culture never looked so good.
What can you expect to find in the Ekeberg Park, located on, and around, the hill itself? Ekebergparken has an incredible selection of both modern and traditional sculptures and artworks by internationally renowned artists like Vigeland, Rodin, Dali, Renoir, Turrell and Hirst. Explore by walking through the park and see how many you can find. Some of the sculptures are located near view-points with some of the best vistas in all of Oslo.
Feeling hungry? The restaurant with the undoubtedly best location and view in town, the historic Ekeberg Restaurant, is located on the hill. Designed by architect Lars Backer and built in 1927-29, it’s famed for it’s perfect neo-classical functionalistic style. The restaurant was a popular dance-venue till the early 1980s, when the building was left to deteriorate for two decades. Thankfully the building got restored to its former glory in 2005. Today it’s celebrated not only as an Oslo-landmark, but is also protected for future generations of winers and diners thanks to a heritage protection by the local council.
Expand your Oslo stay by getting slightly out of the city and up on the Ekeberg Hill. The view, artworks, food and drinks will make you love Oslo for the same reason as the locals do: You can be in the middle of the capital hustle and bustle, but a moment of peace and quiet is only ever a moment away.
Image credits: C. H, Visit Norway, Didrick Stenersen / VisitOSLO.