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Norway and next place to visit... Help

Hi everyone!

I am hoping you all the seasoned Europe travelers can give me some guidance...

My son is traveling to Norway for his sport event, arriving July 2nd, and leaving on the 12th. Norway was never on the list of the places to visit for us, so we are just rolling with this new adventure. During the event, we will be staying at the Oslo convention center, so we won't be able to do much sight seeing, except maybe from 9th, 10th and 11th. My husband is thinking about joining us for a week or so to travel Europe with us starting the 9th. My questions are:

How many days should we have to do sightseeing in Oslo? We thought 2 days would be enough...

After the sightseeing in Oslo, we want to visit another country/city for a few (2 - 4 ) days. Our vacation time is limited next year, so that's all we can do. Which county/ city do you recommend we visit in that limited amount of time? We thought just doing a long layover in London. Is Venice feasible?

Any other suggestions about Norway?

Thank you in advance!

Posted by
5575 posts

We spent a couple of days in Oslo, and that was enough as it's not a really large city. Then we took the Norway in a Nutshell trail/ferry trip through the fjords over to Bergen. We absolutely loved Bergen. The people there were tall, incredibly beautiful and really sweet.
The European budget airlines make just about any city a 2 hour, inexpensive stop. I like to visit new cities and stop off back in a familiar great city on my way home for a day or two--using budget airlines. But some cities are easy to fly out of to the USA--Venice Marco Polo Airport only has direct flights to Chicago and Philadelphia.

Posted by
2855 posts

We carded Copenhagen and Stockholm to our Oslo trip which works very well. Beautiful waterfront cities with lots of charm.

Posted by
4439 posts

Oslo: Two full days would be a minimum if you want to appreciate "everything" at a fast pace, three days at a relaxing pace.
https://www.ricksteves.com/europe/norway/oslo
The Oslo card can be worth the price. https://www.visitoslo.com/en/activities-and-attractions/oslo-pass/prices/

The Bygdøy peninsula can fill a full day taking Bus 30 to the Folk Museum, then short walks to the Viking Ship, Kon Tiki and my favorite, the Fram polar museum. And the Marintime museum if you want to see them all. Take the boat from the Fram pier back to City Hall. Stroll around the Aker Brygge complex after getting off the boat and enjoy a cappachino or something stronger (Norwegian alcoholic drinks are pricey.)
https://www.visitoslo.com/en/activities-and-attractions/boroughs/bygdoy/

I am partial to the outdoor sights: Vigland/Frogner Park, Metro up to the Hollmenkollen ski jump and museum. Great view of the city from the top of the ski jump. And the indoor Norwegian Resistance Museum is another of my favorites. And of course the art museums National Gallery and Munch.

The Norway in a Nutshell is a spectacular as advertised especailly if you want to experience the mountains and Hardangervidda without exerting yourself. I would do the Oslo to Bergen route in at least two days and spend at least a day walking around Bergen. You can depart Bergen by air to your next destination.

Depending on you airline and routing, adding a multi-city stop at your airline's hub is cheap and convenient. SAS hubs to OSL from Copenhagen (CPH) and Copenhagen is worth a several day visit or more. Delta/KLM hub at AMS and a number of airlines hub one of the London airports. We have done our pre-event tourist stop at hub cities such as London and Copenhagen. The benefit of being a tourist for several days on arrival in Europe is adapting to time change before your compeative event and walking around to loosen up muscles crunched from the overnight flight.

Posted by
937 posts

Agree with the other two posters, David and Edgar. We were in Norway for 10 days this past summer, it was my husband’s top destination choice and I was meh about it. Loved Norway! Loved Oslo! Spend at least 2 days there. We had 1.5 days ( we were so jet-lagged) and I wished we had a bit more time there to see the wonderful museums on the Bygdoy peninsula. Trying to do them all in a one day while jet-lagged was exhausting! Two days would be ideal.
Then take the train and see the fjords on the Norway in a Nutshell route.
I have a trip report on this site. Read for more info and get the RS guidebook.
With your limited time, I would not go out of Norway as there is so much to see and do there.

Posted by
39 posts

Hi everyone!

Thank you so much for your ideas and input! I printed out all of your comments, and will share them with my husband. I am getting excited about this trip! Again, thank you for the advice!

Posted by
36 posts

We are now in Reading, UK after having come back from Oslo and Tromso, Norway. I'll toss out lots of ideas based on what we accomplished knowing that you will need to pick and choose based on your time.

We flew from the US to London and spend 5 days traveling to Liverpool, Wales and back via rental car. Then we took a plane to Oslo for another 5 days in which we did a partial Norway in a nutshell trip up to the Flam area to do the train/fjord thing). After that we flew to Tromso (northern Norway) to see the northern lights. We will be spending another 4 days in this UK area to see some of London's tourist attractions. This is our second trip to England. Total trip = 21 days.

The Flam and the Vigeland Sculpture Garden are well worth doing and perhaps a ferry ride around the bay while there. But the Flam is a very long day because of the distance and not easy to get to from Oslo. It's better to take two days with an over-nighter in Flam. Be advised that the Flam with overnight package is not cheap.

You can easily drive over to Sweden from Oslo and travel down the E6 if you want the another country t-shirt. It's only a half day trip. You can take a whole day and do a ferry trip to Denmark. We did not because the ferry schedule did not match with our schedule.

You can fly to London or Germany for a couple of days. I love Germany. Europe airline hops are not expensive. But I would respectfully suggest researching the airline reviews unless you have a need to be packed in like a sardine. There is one in particular that I will never fly again. Fortunately, most flights are short.

If you choose London, then know that it's usually cheaper to use Gatwick than Heathrow. Use the train to get into downtown London and do a Hop-on-Hop off bus tour to see most of the attractions. I do not know anyone who hasn't been impressed with a tour of London's attractions.

A few things about Norway. First, it is expensive. As in 2 - 3 time more expensive than some other countries. Second, do not drive in Oslo during rush hour traffic. It is a miserable experience. Unfortunately, I mistakenly got that t-shirt. Lastly, you do not need to exchange currency for NOK. Everything can be purchased on plastic. Even a pack of gum.

Have a good trip.

Posted by
266 posts

Since you will be already in Norway I would take the chance to explore it.
https://www.visitnorway.com/places-to-go/top-10-places-in-norway/

May be fly up to Tromso or Lofoten to experience midnight sun - or even at North Cape if you want to.

Bergen and Fjordland is a very beautiful alternative at that time of year. You could choose Norway in a Nutshell tours for that.

Night train to Stavanger is an option too. Close Lysefjord is very scenic. If you like hiking try to explore Pulpit Rock or Kjerag.

Trondheim is one of the old major cities with an impressive cathedral - if you like churches.

Or do a round trip: Oslo - Bergen(train) - Trondheim (Hurtigruten ship) - Oslo (train).

Copenhagen and Stockholm are really beautiful and manifold but also different to Oslo.