This blog post is written by first-year MSc in Business students Paula Sprotte, Tim Federspiel, and Jonathan Rau.
Oslo, Norway’s vibrant capital, is not just a good place to study with all its excellent educational institutions but also well known for its numerous outdoor activities. In order to succeed in your studies, it is important that you find a good balance between dedicated work and recreation. In this article, we want to use the opportunity to share our top 5 recommendations for outdoor activities in Oslo.
At BI you have the chance to join one or several student societies at the beginning of each semester. Among our favorite societies is the sailing association. Oslo is very conveniently located with its close access to the Oslo Fjord, which we would consider as one of the best sailing areas in Norway. For a small fee per semester, you can learn sailing from scratch and find friends among your fellow students on sailing trips, an exercise at the weekends or after class. Moreover, experienced sailors have the opportunity to join the BI regatta team and participate in competitions around Norway. Anyhow, no matter whether you are interested in professional sailing or pleasure sailing – nothing is more recreational than to spend a sunny afternoon on a sailing boat in the Oslo Fjord.
The winter in Oslo can be long. This, however, is no excuse to be lazy. Oslo and the surrounding area offer a variety of winter sport activities ranging from skiing to ice skating or hiking in the snow. The skiing opportunities around Oslo are numerous, and it doesn’t matter if you prefer cross country or alpine skiing – Oslo can offer you both during the cold months. It’s even possible to reach most of the sites within 30 minutes from the city center and by public transportation – something that is really appreciated by most students. We can specifically recommend the Oslo Vinterpark (reachable by metro) for downhill skiing and Kjelsås for cross-country skiing (reachable with Bus 54). Though, keep in mind that on sunny weekends the tracks can be crowded. If you want to escape the city for a skiing weekend, we can recommend Beitostolen or Hemsedal. Besides their challenging ski-slopes, those places offer a great Aprés-Ski.
Every year, BI takes part in a traditional sport competition against the Norwegian School of Economics in Bergen. The event is called “Bergensbanelopet” and is a relay run from Bergen to Oslo. Around 100 students per university contribute with different routes to master the whole distance over a period of three days. The responsible student society is always eager to recruit new talents and motivated people in the beginning of each semester. There are trainings offered the whole year in order to form a well-prepared team. Since BI has a really engaged running team, we were motivated to explore the Norwegian nature also in our running shoes. Especially during stressful periods with many assignments and approximating deadlines, running outside is a good refreshment and helps you to refocus. A special recommendation from our side is a tour around Sognsvann, an area that is also favored by cross-country skiers during winter.
One special activity for Oslo is “Island hopping”, meaning to take the ferry directly from the city centre to the islands around Oslo. When we arrived in August one of our favorite afternoon plans was to have a barbecue on the islands and to go swimming in the ocean. In the unexpected warm summer last year with temperatures up to 32 degrees, we often enjoyed the long and sunny days on islands. It is worth to mention that the ferries are operated by the public transportation provider “Ruter” and are therefore included in your monthly student ticket (in case you have one). In the winter, it is also possible to stay in the ferry and view the islands from the warm inside.
On a typical Sunday, almost every Norwegian is going outside for hiking which seemed to be like a national sport activity in the summer. Luckily, around Oslo there are several options to go hiking. Most of the hikes vary between easy and intermediate levels and take up to 4 hours. Several hikes reward you with an amazing view over the Oslo Fjord. You can reach almost all of the tour’s starting points with public transportation (metro or bus). To go on a trip, you only need solid shoes, a backpack with water and lunch (a traditional Norwegian Boller) and some company. In the first months of our studies at BI, we did several hikes with our classmates and got to know many different routes. After a nice hike, you say “Takk for turen” (Thanks for the tour) and “Vi se os neste gang” (See you for the next tour).
Please note that the above list is not exhaustive. There are many more ways to enjoy your leisure time in and around Oslo. Nevertheless, we hope that you got a first impression about the activities that await you in Oslo.
Visit Oslo: https://www.visitoslo.com/en/
Direct link to Island Hopping: https://www.visitoslo.com/en/product/?TLp=163651
Hiking – Travel Guides and Maps: https://outtt.com/en/norway/oslo/hiking
Running – Bergensbanelopet: http://bbl.sbio.no/