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Where to stay in Oslo: Karl Johan Gate vs Train station area?

We are looking to lock down our hotel for 3 night stay in Oslo this summer. Our options are either in the Karl Johan gate area or near the train station. We will be coming in by train and using the train again to go to the airport, otherwise we expect to do a fair bit of city walking during our stay. Appreciate thoughts on these locations — the train station hotel is nicer and offers convenience on arrival and departure, but we’re not sure about the area as a place to base … ? Thanks.

Posted by
1809 posts

I stayed close to the train station (about 3-4 blocks) when I was in Oslo. It was very easy to walk most places from there, and when not, the tram was very easy to use (to get to the Vigeland Sculpture Park, for instance.)

But are you aware that Karl Johans Gate actually starts at the train station and in about twenty minutes' walk along this main drag you'll pass right by or close by many of the sights, arriving eventually at the Royal Palace? So I think it's six of one, half a dozen of the other.

(Gate is the Norwegian word for "street.")

Posted by
963 posts

We have been to Oslo four times and stayed at/very close to the central station twice. We have stayed at the Radisson Blu Plaza and the Thon Opera also right at the train station. We much preferred the Thon Opera as it was closer to the Barcode Project area which has some great restaurants. We found the area near the Radisson to be a bit sketchy and hard to find a nice restaurant without walking a long way.

Karl Johans Gate is very close to the station.

We have now stayed twice in the Frogner House apartments in Grunerlokka which we loved. The area is wonderful with lots of cafes and restaurants and a very quick trip by tram to the city.

Posted by
15510 posts

Karls Johan Gate starts at the train station.

I stayed on that street at the Comfort Hotel Karl Johan. It was a seven minute walk to the train station.

I wouldn't stay there again because of the noise. I had an internal room that opened up onto an atrium. At the bottom of the atrium was a restaurant and the noise, until late at night, rose up. The front of the hotel had an outside bar and restaurant that also went late into the night.

There used to be a travel store in the train station. It sold all things travel related including the largest selection of travel sized items including toiletries. They even had a full line of Eagle Creek travel accessories.

I bought a 5 ml bottle of hand sanitizer. (This was before the pandemic.) It later freaked out the Guernsey airport security people. They couldn't make out what is was since the label was in Norwegian. They had to take it to a supervisor--in the back--who came out saying it was okay. (5 ml is about 0.17 oz) I kept saying..."It's hand sanitizer."

Posted by
335 posts

The two areas are adjacent and overlap. If you are only now looking for a hotel for this summer, you'll probably nered to take what you can get.

Posted by
63 posts

Thank you to everyone posting a response. To clarify, we are considering the area on Karl Johan gate closer to the intersection with the Rosenkrantz gate on the park (I believe it’s called
Studenterlunden) OR the end of the street nearest the train station. We’ve heard mixed information about the immediate area near the train station—but that area has some appeal given we will be coming in and out by train. We are holding reservations but need to let go the ones we are not using (Karl Johan Gate Hotel and Amerikalinjen, if that helps). Thanks again!