Discover Oslo with a guide,

a cultural experience with historic insight.


Norio provides a large selection of guided Oslo city walks in Norwegian, German and English.
In addition, we can gladly personalise a trip for a truly unique experience.
If you want to end the city walk in an eatery in the area, we will help.. 
If you want to go for a special experience, we can provide musical entertainment, catering and transportation.
Arranging a launch, summer party or christmas celebrations? We have several entertaining tours that could compliment your event.
What about giving a city walk as a gift? Norio offers great gift cards for any occasion.
Whether you are looking for a private city walk with friends and family or a larger event - we arrange guided tours with a personal touch for small and large groups throughout the year.
Join us and discover Oslo's hidden cultural treasures.

Get in touch to hear more about us and to receive a quotation.

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THE RIVER AKERSELVA  – From frowns to smiles

«Akerselva is a wounded blemish on our city, but it will become a beautiful smile,» said Mayor Carl Jeppesen in 1917. Waterfalls, old wooden houses and factories from a bygone era form the basis for our walk along the Akerselva.  Industry began to establish itself in Christiania in the late 1800s, and life among the workers was characterised by cramped living quarters and poor living conditions. We look in to the everyday life of the women at Hjula mill and the men of the Myren workshop. A trip to Vøyen farm and glimpses of small side streets continues our trip. Today, life along the river flourishes in new splendour, characterised by several exciting housing and cultual projects in addition to restaurants. The trip along Akerselva can end in Vulkan, the area of Oslo's large food hall, or at Grünerløkka.

Meeting Point: In front of Sagene fire station at Sandakerveien 58a.
Closest Public Transport: Sandaker senter

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ALNAELVA / VÅLERENGA –
Lush forests and industrial history in deepest Old Town Oslo

Alnaelva was for long the hidden and forgotten river. Now the river has come to light, and the path alongside leads us through the lush forests of Fagerlia and the mysterious Svartdalen (‘Black Valley’). Alnaelva was, as with its "big-sister" Akerselva, the foundation of the industrial revolution in Christiania.  The area saw the historic female match workers strike of 1889, as well as Johan Petersens linen and cotton wool factory, which supplied fabrics to the whole world. We will walk along Norway's first railway which was completed in 1854 and went from Kristiania to Eidsvoll. Further on, we stumble upon Etterstadsletta, which in its time was both a place for military exercises and a place of public punishments, before OBOS built its first modern housing cooperative in the area.  The trip continues on to Vålerenga with its charming timber buildings. Once a poor workers’ suburb, today it is one of the most popular residential areas. Here the guys hang out on the "Sotahjørnet" talking football,  and this is the last destination of our trip.

Meeting Point: foran broovergangen i krysset Fyrstikkbakken / Nils Hansens vei .
Closest Public Transport: Tveten bro(bus), Bryn stasjon(train), Brynseng stasjon (T-bane)

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BJØRVIKA - The pieces begin to fall into place

Bjørvika is one of the largest ever city development projects in Norway, with a modern city based on sustainable and environmentally friendly premises being built. Bjørvika, known as Bæjarvik or ‘town cove’ in Norse, is Oslo's historic port area. During the construction of the row of buildings that form the Barcode area, no less than 13 shipwrecks were found from the 16th and 17th centuries.  Archaeologists have dug up dockside works, as well as several thousand objects, including pottery and smoking pipes.

Bjørvika is Oslo’s new cultural quarter including the Opera house, the new Munch Museum, Oslo Art Hall and the main Deichman’s Library in the city centre. The area will enable 20,000 new jobs and over 4,000 new houses.

Dronning Eufemias gate is the area's new focal point - a magnificent green axis connecting East to West.  At the far end of Sørenga locals can rent kayaks or dive into the fjord from Sørenga’s man-made beach front.

Join us on tour of discovery to hear all about Bjørvika's history and exciting discoveries during the development.  We will walk through the pedestrian tunnel under the Barcode area and look into each of the buildings that showcase exciting art and architecture.  You will hear more about the thinking behind the public spaces, axes, ‘Havnepromenade’ (Harbour Promenade) and the new residential area.  The pieces are beginning to fall into place.

Meeting Point: in front of the entrance to the Opera House, Kirsten Flagstads plass 1.
Closest Public Transport: Tollboden (bus), Jernbanetorget (tram, T-bane)

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THE EKEBERG PARK – Art, history and nature. Three experiences in one.

The Ekeberg Park is an exciting historical site, offering world-class art.

Join a cultural history walk through the park combined with a magnificent view of the city. As we experience the park's artwork, we discover traces from the Stone Age, right up to our own time.

We include a vivid description of both the latest and historic developments, geology and art history. As of today, there are 35 sculptures that represent European and American art throughout the last 130 years. The park continues to receive grants for new installations, ensuring its evolution over time.

Art, history and nature combine, inviting you to an unforgettable experience.


Information: The ground  is a little steep in Ekebergparken, remember good shoes.


Meeting point: Outside Karlsborg Spiseforretning, Kongsveien 21.
Closest Public Transport: Ekebergparken (tram)

 

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GRØNLAND – from small town to metropolis

Grønland and Vaterland were long the city's important port areas.  We start the walk at Vaterland, once the shabby suburbs of the city frequented by prostitutes and thieves, a place that lived by its own rules, with con-artists abounding.

Today, Grønland is a multicultural district filled with smells, flavours and moods from foreign cultures. Smalgangen, once the city's slum district, is today characterised by well-stocked greengrocers, gems, fabrics and delights from the east plus a bustling public life. We visit Asylet and swing past Olympen (Lompa), the city's oldest beer hall in operation.  Along the way, we hear about Oskar Braaten's world as we walk from Gråbeingård to Moske(?).  In Grønland, people from all over the world live - trying to find their place, just as before.

A tour of Grønland clearly shows the development of Oslo from a small town to a metropolis.  The tour can be rounded off at Tøyen Torg - the city's newly renovated meeting place with space for most.  It can also end in Bjørvika. Then we stroll over "Akrobaten" - the footbridge that orientates the city towards the fjord.

Meeting point: in front of the Radison Blu Plaza hotel, Sonja Henies plass 3
Closest public transport: Jernbanetorget (t-bane, bus, tram) Oslo sentralstasjon (train)

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GRÜNERLØKKA – From cramped quarters to a hip housing area

In the late 1800s, Christiania is Europe's fastest growing city, and industrial development along the Akerselva river requires significant city expansion. The spectacularly rich Thorvald Meyer buys Grünerløkka and sells on single sites at huge profits. Grünerløkka is built as an inferior residential area for workers at the factories along the river. Behind the beautiful facades were basic back yards with horse stables and outdoor toilets. The buildings to the rear were small and characterised by cramped conditions, poverty and a daily struggle to survive.

We visit "Seilduken" and walk through the street while we hear about life in "Løkka" before and now.  Today, this is one of the city's most popular residential areas where housing prices are skyrocketing. Here you will find many of the city's cool outdoor spaces, cafés, vintage shops and second-hand markets today.

Where do the names Grünerløkka, New York and Cuba come from? Why does a tram adorn the communal entrance (siloinngangen?) to the Grünerløkka student housing? How did the transformation from the previously cramped conditions to a hip housing area happen?  Join the trip and find the answers.

A city walk of Grünerløkka can be combined with a tour through Rodeløkka.

Meeting point: The pavilion in Birkelunden
Closest public transport: Birkelunden (tram and bus)

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KVADRATUREN – Old Christiania wakes to life in new Oslo

When Oslo burnt down in 1624, Christian IV chose an entirely new location for the city - well protected by the Akershus fortress. The name of the newly born city was Christiania!

How was life in the small trading town that grew up in the 17th and 18th centuries?

We start the walk on Christiania Square - the city's lively meeting place. Here was the main well for both animals and people, the farmer's market but also the city's venue for humiliating public punishments with both stocks and gallows. Pigs and chickens grunted and cackled and an unpleasant stench filled everyone's nose.  Many of the middle classes’ beautiful houses are still found in Kvadraturen today, and each has their own story to tell.

On our journey, we will also take in the area around the Fortress, which offers stories of both royal life, prisoners and ghosts.

In 1814 the slumbering provincial city was transformed into a capital. Around Bankplassen the Supreme Court, Parliament, banks and the theater should stand, however the story was to be different and the area was forgotten.

The center of Oslo today is poised for a substantial boost. The square will wake up to new life and tie the center in the west with the center in the east.  On this walk you will get insight into both older history and Oslo's future plans for the area. How should life be brought back into the old streets? The dust is being brushed off of Old Christiania.

Meeting Point : in front of Kafe Celsius, Rådhusgata 19
Closest Public Transport: Christiania Torv (tram), Kongens gate (tram, bus), Stortinget (T-bane)

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MEDIEVAL OSLO – a time trip through a thousand years

Join us on a time trip through a thousand years that unites historic and modern Oslo. In the shelter of the hill where Ekeberg stands today, the medieval city of Oslo grew up. The city was divided into two between church and royal power, and had its peak around 1300 during the reign of Håkon V Magnusson.

You will hear about life at Bispegården with St. Halvard’s Cathedral in the north and Kongsgården (the King’s Estate) with Mariakirken (Maria’s Church) in the south. We will take a look at the quayside and harbour area teeming with life and excitement.

What was it like to come from the countryside to the city with its monasteries, (hirdmenn?) and taverns? Good that the city's watchmen made sure you came home safely in the darkness!(?)

Today there are only ruins that can tell us about the greatness of medieval Oslo.  What led to the old town’s sites being covered with land and turned into loading yards (ladegård?) for the Akershus fortress? We will find out on this trip.

When the Follobanen train project is completed around 2020 the visitor park associated with the ruins will be rebuilt and get a worthy place in the cityscape. The possibilities to unite Bjørvika with historic Oslo are many and you will hear about today's plan to create the best possible association between "the Pompeii of the North and the Modern Fjord City". A guided tour of the medieval city usually ends in Bjørvika, then we will walk through the area around the Opera house before our time trip is concluded.  

Meeting Point : in front of Oslo Ladegård, Oslogate 13
Closest Public Transport: St. Halvardsplass (tram, bus), Ladegården (bus)

RODELØKKA- Oslo’s secluded oasis

In Rodeløkka it seems that time has stood still. The charming wooden housing is hidden well away from the traffic in Carl Berner's place.

In the short period between 1859 and 1878 the small worker suburb shot up – people were keen to take advantage of the opportunity to build cheap wooden houses before the area became incorporated into Christiania and the requirement for brick or stone was introduced.

Rodeløkka became a typical workers’ district and by the 1900s was perceived as the city's slum. Here you had to pick up water from Lakkegata school and the outdoor toilets remained until the 1980s. Rodeløkka was called "the triple hell" and was to be demolished! In the 1970s, the group "Resident Action Against Demolition" was launched and this resulted in the wooden houses of Rodeløkka becoming the first of several preserved areas in the city.

Today, we see the settlement as an idyllic oasis with remains and traces of the small industrial and craft companies that came to the area.

A guided tour also gives you an insight into the history of the Freia chocolate factory, a very visible part of Rodeløkka.  Here are memories of a bygone era when the area smelt of cocoa, carpenters glue, lye and tannins.

A hike on Rodeløkka is rounded off at Grünerløkka or Tøyen square, depending on the needs of the group.

 

Meeting point: in front of the 7-eleven at Carl Berners plass.
Closest public transport:  Carl Berners plass (tram, bus, T-bane)

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VIGELANDSPARKEN – The world’s largest sculpture park created by a single artist

Do you know the story behind Vigelandsparken?

The unique park is Gustav Vigeland's life work, and the design of all elements within it are his own personal vision. How did he get the opportunity to create his own sculpture park in the middle of Oslo? What was the idea, theme and philosophy behind the park as it stands today? How did the artist live and work?  The answers to these and much more will be expanded upon  while we take a closer look at the individual sculptures.

Gustav Vigeland was concerned with the complex nature of man and our huge range of emotions and moods, as seen by the central themes of his work.  The styles on display vary from the romantic and intimate to more robust and monumenta expressions.

Vigelandsparken is home to more than 200 sculptures in bronze, granite and wrought iron. Besides being Oslo's foremost tourist attraction, it is widely used by Oslo citizens throughout the year.

Join a guided tour through the crowded and popular park - maybe you'll see Vigeland's art with new eyes?

Meeting Point : in front of the entrance to Vigeland café, right at the main entrance to Vigelandsparken.
Closest Public Transport: Vigelandsparken (bus and tram)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

City walks