Free Things to Do in Oslo

Oslo is the most expensive city I've been to so far, but it has a surprising amount of free activities - from free food festivals, to live concerts and free museums, there is something for everyone. Norwegians also happen to be extremely polite and nice people who would let you do a lot of stuff that normally costs a lot for free, just smile and ask.

Visit the Norwegian parliament (Stortinget), which has been working in the same building since 1866. It is possible to take a free guided tour through the building almost every day and learn a little bit about the history and politics of Norway.

A lot of museums have free admission on a Sunday. That list includes Stenersenmuseet, Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, Museum of Architecture, Museum of Contemporary Art and the National Gallery. You get to see anything between modern design and Edvard Munchwithout spending any money. In Norway everything is closed on Sundays, so you might find yourself in a museum anyway.

Go to the roof of famous modern Operahuset (Oslo Opera House) and enjoy a beautiful panorama of the city and Oslofjord - this is my favorite spot in the Norwegian capital. You can also go inside the building to see a good example of modern Scandinavian architecture.

Like in many other cities there are free walking tours. Check this free walking tour if you are in Oslo. The tour is available in English, Norwegian, German, Spanish, Polish and French. The guides will tell you a lot about the history of Oslo and show you traditional and modern art in the city. Free city maps are also available in every hotel and hostel.

Another free and famous place to visit in Oslo is the Vigeland sculpture park. It was designed by Gustav Vigeland and contains 212 stunning sculptures. This park is not in the city center, so you would have to walk the distance.

Luckily there are cool free concerts and events in Oslo – with world famous musicians performing! There is Granittrock, Mela Festival, National Music Day, Oslo Culture night and many others. Make sure you check whether there are any free concerts while you are in Norway, most of them are in the summer.

When traveling to Oslo in October make sure you swing by the Matstreif Food Festival . You get to sample some typical Norwegian food for free. Elk burgers, whale meat, pancakes with berry jams and other local foods are available to buy. Sounds like a foodie's paradise!
 Take a walk at Aker Brygge and lie on the small beach in front of the museum while you watch ships and ferries sail during the sunset. You probably don't think of Norway of a place to get a tan, but due to white nights you get a lot of sun without extreme heat. You can even even swim there – and it is right in the center of the city. The beaches Paradisbukta and Huk are also worth checking out.

If you ate traveling in winter you might enjoy ice skating for free in the Spikersuppa Skating Rink. It is between the Parliament and the National Theatre. Renting ice skates if you don't have any with you costs extra though.

Check if there is free wifi available, it's everywhere! From buses to bars and on the major streets. If you fly with the airline Norwegian you will even have free internet on the plane!
Ask for free tap water in bars and small shops like 7eleven if you get thirsty – buying drinks (and food and everything else) in Oslo is very expensive. It is not only safe but also smart to drink tap water in Norway.

On the photo: Operahouse in Oslo, Norway