Thursday, July 29, 2010

Vikingskipshuset, or the Viking Ship Museum in Oslo

After a day and a half at sea, we arrived at our first port of call, Oslo, Norway.  Oslo dates back to the Viking age and has a rich nautical history.  The Oslo Harbour is the busiest in Norway with industry, trade, and tourism.  We were not the only cruiseship in port that day.

For our shore excursion, we chose one titled Norwegian Adventure because it would take us through Oslo as well as to visit three museums: the Viking Ship Museum, the Maritime Museum, and the Kon-Tiki Museum.  Our first stop was the Vikingshipshuset, or the Viking Ship Museum.

The Viking Ship Museum is a small venue, almost too small for the number of tourists visiting the day we were there.  However, it's not small when you consider that it houses three large Viking ships and various items that are related to the Vikings and their nautical ways.  The building has a few places in the corners of each room where you can get a birdseye view of the ships and see inside them better than from the floor level.

The ships themselves were fascinating and well preserved, even the intricate patterns carved into the wood.

If you go, here's information you'll want to know about hours, how to get there, and how much it costs.  There's a giftship in the front of the museum that is small and open, before you go through the turnstile entrance.  Restrooms are on the lower level just behind where you purchase your tickets.  If you're touring with an excursion, it's best to scope out your souvenirs and use the restroom first; you'll still have time to explore the museum without being delayed by lines in either place.

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