10 Things You Might Not Know About Oslo

It’s time for another edition of 10 things you might not know, with Oslo being today’s focus! Although my mom and I had a short visit to the city back in December, we were able to pack quite a lot in and learned SO much about Oslo’s history and culture. And believe me when I say, there’s a lot of it!

Here are 10 things you might not know about Oslo.

Check out these 10 things you might not know about Oslo!

  1. The Nobel Peace Prize ceremony is held in Oslo’s City Hall every December.
  2. Oslo’s nickname is “The Tiger City,” and they have a large tiger statue at Jernbanetorget (Railway Square), just outside of the central train station.
  3. Since 1947, Oslo has given London its Christmas tree for Trafalgar Square as a thank you for its support during WWII.
  4. The Viking Ship Museum in Oslo is home to 3 Viking ships that are fully in tact and over 1,000 years old.
  5. The band A-ha (who sing the very catchy “Take On Me”) formed in Oslo in 1982.
  6. Oslo is considered “South Norway,” and is the same latitude as Anchorage, Alaska and Saint Petersburg, Russia.
  7. In 2013, Oslo was named the most expensive city in the world.
  8. The Royal Palace is located at the end of Karl Johans Gate, which is essentially Oslo’s “Main Street.”
  9. All education is free – including college!
  10. Most shops are closed on Sundays in Oslo (with the exception of souvenir shops).


Want to know more about Norway’s capital city? Read about our quick stop in Oslo and the incredible Grand Hotel Oslo!

  • I did not know that it was the most expensive city in the world! I would have for sure thought Seattle lol

    • I don’t think Seattle’s even in the top 30, haha. There are some pretty expensive cities out there!

  • I don’t know which fact surprised me the most! Free education & most expensive city? Wow! I had always admired Oslo for its beauty. I love this series of yours! :)

    • Thank you :) And total contrasts, right?! Haha. I guess it balances out that way!

  • thesophiadiaries

    Wow, it’s interesting that it’s the most expensive city but it gives away free education xD one probably has to do with the other ;)

    • I could totally see that, haha. Plus it’s a little removed from mainland Europe!

  • How cool! I knew about A-ha, but I had no idea that they gave London their Christmas tree or that they were the most expensive city! Still want to visit though haha.

    • The fact that Oslo is a pricey city didn’t steer me away either, haha. I highly recommend a visit!

  • that’s so cool that all education is free! I am curious how expensive is the most expensive haha

    • It seems to alternate every year but I think they look mostly at cost of living. Although being a tourist is still pretty expensive too! I hope cities don’t strive to be at the top of that list lol.

  • Nicole Leith

    I love that fact about the Christmas tree. What a nice gesture! I love when cities and towns shut down on Sunday. My small college town did that too. It really makes everyone slow down for a but.

    • Isn’t it awesome?! Even after all these years! And I like the idea of it too, although it’s definitely not something we were used to!

  • Miss ALK

    I didn’t know any of these facts!! I did a ballet routine to that A-Ha song in middle school, haha! And amazing about free education!

    xoxo A

    • How fun! I love that A-ha song :) 80s music is the best!

  • mckenna bleu

    I had idea about some of these! I cant believe all schooling is free there! how amazing!

  • Wow! Can’t believe al education is free! That’s amazing!

    • Right?! It’s a totally different way of life over there!

  • Tori Dunlap

    College is free?! I’m moving to Oslo! haha

    Tori || Victori Media

    • Isn’t that amazing?! I would’ve loved to take advantage of that!

  • Wow! I can’t imagine getting schooling free! haha

    • Right?! They do have high taxes though so I guess it balances out that way?

  • Elizabeth Johnson

    These are really interesting insights. I love the song “Take On Me” I had no idea the band formed there. Also, pretty cool that education is free!

    • Thanks, Elizabeth! I was surprised when I learned the band was formed there too – I love that song :)

  • Iceland seems to be the “it” place to vacation right now but my husband and I are dying to go to Norway!!! I’ll definitely be checking out your other posts about Oslo.

    • Norway is BEAUTIFUL! I definitely want to get back to explore more of the country/north, but was really impressed by all that Oslo had to offer. I hope you guys are able to take a trip someday soon! Norwegian Air has some really great deals on flights :)

  • Carly Ned

    I love the song “Take On Me” I had no idea the band formed in Oslo. What neat facts!

    • Glad you like them, Carly! I’m always so surprised at the things I learn when I visit new places! That one was new to me too :)

  • I would love to visit Oslo! The Viking Ship Museum sounds so cool, I love historical things like that.

    Lauren // http://laurensjourney.com

    • Me too! There’s SO much history to see in Oslo. We couldn’t believe how great of condition the ships in the museum were in!

  • Anna Hubbard

    How interesting! I’ve been wanting to visit Oslo!

    • It’s a beautiful city and had so many cool things to do. I definitely recommend it!

  • Audrey Knizek

    I’ve heard that Oslo is incredibly expensive! Definitely a trip that would have to be thoughtfully planned out in order to not spend TOO much money. Such a fun post :)

    • It was pretty pricey, but if you plan ahead it can definitely be done affordably! Glad you enjoyed the post, Audrey!

  • Sami Mast

    Woah that’s pretty awesome that they have three Viking ships!! I would love to visit that museum and Oslo just for that!

    The Classic Brunette

    • That was one of the biggest selling points for me! Oslo has SO much history – it was really cool to see!

  • Danielle Randall

    Sounds like great place to explore! I love hearing about new place I can add to my trip list. Thanks


  • Education? Free? Time to move to Oslo, lol!

    • Right?! On the flip side they have pretty high taxes. I guess it all balances out in the end!

  • Kaitlyn Fickle Killebrew

    I’ve never been to Oslo! It was so cool to learn so many new things about a new place I could visit someday!

    • It’s such a unique city – we loved it! I hope you’re able to check it out yourself one day!

  • Oslo sounds like such a culturally rich city! You clearly enjoyed your trip and learned a lot about it! xo Rach | http://www.rkcsouthern.com

    • It really is! We had a blast in Oslo. I’m hoping to get back to Norway to explore more of the country again soon!

  • I want to go to the Viking Ship Museum! That would be so cool!

    • It’s such a fascinating place! I definitely recommend it if you make it to Oslo!

  • Taylor Smith

    This looks like an amazing city!!!!! Thanks for the insider facts!

  • nicole simonetti

    such a cool list of facts that I was never aware of…I’ve always found a love for places that don’t support working on sundays! x, nicole // http://www.nicoleeigh.com

  • I knew nothing of Oslo lol! Love this info!

    • Thanks for reading, Tilley! Happy to hear you learned some new info!

  • Macarena Ferreira

    Omg I would love to attend the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony one day! Love these facts.

    xo // http://www.thematerialgirl.co

    • Me too! We missed it by a few days, but it was cool to see all of the prep starting for it!

  • So many great facts! I would love to visit Norway!

    The Blush Blonde

    • Thanks, Kristin! I hope you’re able to plan a trip soon. Norway is great!

  • I only knew #5 because I’m a huge fan of 80s bands, and that one in particular!

  • so cool! It’s always fun to learn things about new places!!!

    • I couldn’t agree more! Which fact did you find the most surprising?