To celebrate Norwegian Constitution Day (or Nasjonaldagen, if you will) we caught up with Kristoffer Lo – guitarist with Norse chart-toppers and summer-festival must-sees, Highasakite – to get the lowdown on our latest European city-break star: Oslo…
If you have the time (and money), organic-focused Maaemo is one of Oslo’s best restaurants – the only one in Norway with three Michelin stars. Kolonihagen in Frogner, is a converted stable with a great beer garden and fresh, local fare. For perfect pizza, try Grünerløkka’s Villa Paradiso. Illegal Burger, in the city centre, is also worth seeking out, and Lokk, close to the Rockefeller Music Hall, has an amazingly innovative menu.
We’ve become much more of a coffee and beer-brewing nation than we used to be. You’ll find the best coffee in town at the famous Tim Wendelboe in Grünerløkka – no food, just great blends. For craft beers, Oslo Microbrewery in Majorstua is a highlight. Bar-wise, grab a drink at No.19, Fuglen or Himkok, all in the city center.
Grünerløkka is the coolest shopping spot, with a tempting selection of small boutiques. For men, check out Dapper for stylish clothes and a really nice barber. Torgata, close to the city centre, has enticing stores like Hevn for clothing and – for music nerds – the amazing Vintage Guitar for guitars and effects pedals. Sadly, most of the record stores have disappeared, but the everlasting Tiger stocks ace vinyl and CDs.
Rockefeller Music Hall and Sentrum Scene, both right next to each other, are Oslo’s biggest venues. Highasakite have played both a couple of times and they’re great. Blå, close to the food hall, is a nice venue for clubbing and for checking out bands. Also, Mono in the city center is a cool place to see gigs, listen to talks or just hang out.
The Royal Palace in the city centre is always pleasant. The Astrup Fearnley Museum is a beautiful and striking venue for modern art. And if you have the time, take a bus out to Henie-Onstad Kunstsenter in Høvikodden: an incredible gallery built by [famous figure-skater and film star] Sonia Henie, and an important place for Norway’s experimental art scene.
Takk, Kristoffer… And if all that’s got you thinking ‘Oslo? Let’s go!’, then book a stay at Tjuvholmen’s hip hideaway, the Thief, and prepare to have your heart stolen by designer decor, big-name pop-art pieces and a buzzy bar scene.
Highasakite‘s new album Camp Echo is out on 20 May on Propeller Recordings. They play London’s Village Underground on 24 May as part of an extensive European tour.
Featured image via Lokk