Oslo Has the Perfect Mix of City and Nature

Julia sitting in front of a graffiti art wall.

“You can go to a café in the morning and spend the night sleeping in a tent in the woods.” 

Julia Maher and her boyfriend have spent several nights in near-total isolation just outside of Oslo. 

“It was cold and there was a little bit of snow in the air, but we had very good sleeping bags,” she explains with a laugh. 

Embrace nature  

The 24-year-old had originally planned to stay for one semester as an exchange student enrolled in the journalism programme at OsloMet. But she enjoyed Oslo so much that she decided to stay for another semester.  

She loves hiking around Sognsvann—both in the winter and during the summer. 

“In summer, you can go for a swim or have a barbecue. In winter, you can go skiing.” 

Julia has tried cross-country skiing twice. 

“I got a couple of bruises, but I am planning to try again next winter.” 

Julia sitting in front of the view over parts of Oslo and the Oslo Fjord.

Stunning views from Vettakollen. Photo: Sonja Balci / OsloMet

I enjoy the fresh air and just getting away from all the noise. – Julia Maher

Nature on our doorstep

Another place in Oslo Julia likes to go hiking is Vettakollen, located north of the city a short walk from the nearest metro stop.  

“At the top, there is an amazing view. Vettakollen is a really romantic place to watch the sunset,” the German native tells us. 

Julia thinks Oslo has the perfect mix of city and nature. The same is not true back home in Cologne, where you have to drive for an hour or two to get out in nature. 

“I enjoy the fresh air in Oslo and just getting away from all the noise,” she says. 

A thriving cultural scene 

When she's back in the city proper, Julia most likes hanging out in Grünerløkka, a neighbourhood home to bustling clubs, bars and restaurants.  

The club Blå, for example, has events and concerts for international students every Sunday. 

“I really like Blå. To get there, you take a nice walk from the city center along the Akerselva River.”

You can go to a bar or a cafe in the morning and spend the night sleeping outside in the woods. – Julia Maher
Julia standing in front of a graffiti wall.

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