jn82’s Epic Adventure

Day 95 [04 May 09] – Oslo

Posted in Oslo by jn82 on May 4, 2009

Totally overslept this morning, and got up at 9.30am instead of 7.30am as intended. Thankfully there was still 30 minutes to go before breakfast ended at 10am, so we managed to eat our fill before heading out at 11am.

The plan for today was to head to Bygdøy, a small peninsula on the western side of Oslo. Here, there are four museums, of which we intended to visit two of them. To get to Bygdøy, we had the option of going by bus or ferry, both part of the Oslo’s public transportation network, so for novelty’s sake we took the ferry, which was also just a stone’s throw from the hotel.

The first museum was the Vikingskipshuset (Viking Ship Museum), which contains three actual viking ships excavated from the Oslofjord region that were preserved since the viking age.

Outside Vikingskipshuset.

These ships had been brought ashore and used as tombs for nobility, who were buried with all they were expected to need hereafter, including jewels, furniture, food and servants. Built of oak in the 9th century, these Viking ships were buried in blue clay, which preserved two of them amazingly well.

The impressive Oseberg ship, buried in AD 834 and festooned with elaborate dragon and serpent carvings, is 22m long and took 30 people to row it.

Oseberg.

A second ship, the 24m long Gokstad, is the world’s finest example of a longship.

Gokstad.

Of the third ship, the Tune, only a few boards remain.

Tune.

I had come here expecting to see viking ships of war that they used in battles, but it was ok just to see these smaller ships which were probably used for just transport and other non-battle purposes.

Afte Vikingskipshuset, we headed over to Norsk Folkemuseum (Norwegian Museum of Cultural History). Here, dirt paths wind past old barns, stabbur (storehouses on stilts), rough timbered farmhouses with sod roofs sprouting wild flowers and 140 other 17th and 18th century buildings. There is also a permernant exhibition of Norweigian folk art and clothing, which is pretty boring.

Traditional Halling dance.

Old building.


Old street.


Timber stabbur.

Sod roofed wooden house.

The highlight was probably the restored stave church, built around 1200 in Gol and brought to Bygdøy in 1885.

Stave church.

We left Bygdøy around 5pm after the museums closed, and got back to the hotel around 6pm after an early dinner in the city.

Today’s pictures here.

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