I have spent the weekend in Oslo. While being there I visited one of my favourite sights in the Norwegian capital. Oscarshall is one of the Norwegian royal palaces, and is located on the Bygdøy peninsula together with all the major museums, but is still a place which few tourists choose to visit.
From 1814 to 1905 Norway was in union with Sweden; forming the United Kingdom of Sweden and Norway. The King Karl XVI Johan commissioned the royal castle in central Oslo, even if he spent only one month a year in Oslo. When Oscar II was elected King, he and his wife Josephine decides to build a summer palace for day use in the outskirts of Oslo.
The palace was completed in 1852 and was raised with the King’s and Queen’s private funds. The architect was Johan Henrik Nebelong; who had been one of the assistants when the royal castle was built. Many then contemporary Norwegian artists contributed with the interior. The palace’s main room is the dining hall where the well-known Norwegian painter Adolph Tideman has painted ten pictures depict the life of a farmer´s family.
Unfortunately, I was not allowed to take pictures inside the palace. From Oscarshall´s official website you can get an imagination of what the interior looks like.
The palace has a small but beautiful garden on the slope to the water. The garden is filled with paths, fountains and vases; leading to the grand portal by the sea. During the 19th century the common way to reach the summer palace was by boat. The royal family and their guests got a spectacular entrance arriving through the postal.
In the garden you also find a small café serving waffles and buns, which can be enjoyed with views over the water and the city. As I ate my waffle and had a apple cider a small red cox came walking along the building!
I have visited Oscarshall several times before, but this was the first time since the five-year long restoration finished in 2009. The palace had been badly maintained for almost 150 years and was literally starting to fall apart. During the restoration the palace got its original off-white colour back; for centuries it had been coloured in pastel yellow and pink. The new look for sure makes the buildings very elegant.
So yes; Oscarshall is still one of my top five favourite sights in Oslo. It even got pushed up a step or to on the list after the make over.