Touching Down in Oslo
After being on my "Top Cities to Visit" list for the longest time I finally made it to the capital of Norway, the dynamic "Beta World City" of Oslo.
Touching down on this Nordic metropolis we were greeted with a pleasant 17ºC and a full blast of sunshine (pictured above) which led to the immediate and mandatory al fresco tasting of "Ringnes" (one of the many locally brewed beers) with my Dubai based travel buddies.
Based on my many years of experience being a professional globe trotter and after being previously almost frozen to dead in Scandinavia at -40ºC, I came prepared with a The North Face Summit series jacket (they don't pay me for advertising I promise but I swear by these jackets as they are not only rated for minus zero temperatures but extremely light and easy to compress into a backpack) to endure the expected after sundown low wind chill factor, but it goes to show that no matter how experienced or prepared one is, life is full of great surprises, I don't know if it was the effect of the Ringnes pints we downed but the jacket stayed in the backpack even after dark which was a pleasant way of spending the first 24 hours in Oslo.
Rise and Shine + Let There Be Clouds and Rain
On a good clear day the city wakes up to an even golden glow cityscape as there are not many high-rise buildings to block the sun light coming from The Oslofjord side; in fact the Radisson Plaza, which is where we stayed, is one of the tallest buildings in the city offering a great vantage point for cityscape photos.
After a short walk to Oslo's Central Station it became clear that although the city is very small we had no solid idea of exactly where to go or how to get there so we took the path of least resistance and purchased a two hundred and fifty Norwegian Krone Hop On-Hop Off Red Bus ticket which pretty much covered all the areas of interest that we originally had in mind.
The weather was not "summerish" like before and we even got a taste of some light rain which after living in the eternally sunny Dubai came as a much needed break.
The Frogner Park and The Vigeland Installation
First stop suggested by my good friend, travel buddy and world wide wild lioness Tiarna Pascale (pictured right) was The Frogner park which contains the permanent sculpture exhibition by Gustav Vigeland which is the world's largest sculpture park made by a single artist.
Landscaped green areas, blossoming flowers and sculptures of human figures in the nude are the main attractions at Frogner park but there was also a bubble maker which I personally think should be hired by the city on a permanent basis as the photos I took oh bubbles and kids interacting with them were the highlight of the park.Here are some images I took at the park:
Oslo Opera House
Being a street photographer at heart I decided to skip the plethora of museums for this short visit and after enjoying an hour and a half ride by bus soaking in the city's ambience I headed down to Oslo's award winning Opera House.
The dramatic dark and stormy skies contrasting the white marble of the building made for great shots, Oslo's Opera House quickly earned a spot on my favourite buildings to photograph and explore, there isn't after all many buildings that you can walk all over, literally, as you can reach the rooftop of the building by foot without having to access it from the inside, one more example of architectural design that meets my favourite elements on a city or building which are: it is made to be used, lived and experienced.
Tusen Takk Oslo!
Spending 48 hours in Oslo was a great experience and Scandinavia in general will always have a special place in my life as a photographer, I will definitely come and visit other areas of Norway but Oslo definitely hit the spots for street and architectural photography, fantastic shooting spots and beautiful ever changing skies.
Thanks to Chris, Tiarna, Guile, Nick, Ricardo and Denise for being excellent travel partners and sharing a few good laughs in Norway.
Here is the full gallery of my 48 hours in Oslo: