One of the best things to do in Oslo in spring and summer is to pack a picnic basket and partake in some outdoor dining at one of my favourite places around Oslo where you can sprawl out and enjoy a beautiful sunny day with your family, friends and people you love.
Most of these places are well-known to Oslo citizens while the last on the list, Jeløya, is maybe less popular but probably one of the best places to arrange one day trip outside Oslo, picnic included, of course!
1. Frogner Park
Frogner Park is the largest park in the city, located in the beautiful district of Frogner, in Oslo West. Great for all activities, Frogner Park is one of the most well-known places in Oslo for picnic and dive in the nature just in Oslo city centre. Especially in summer, Frogner Park is always full of people who can go for a run, walk the dog, play with children, enjoy the sun, have a yoga session, and obviously have a picnic or barbecue. A picnic in Frogner Park is kind of a summer tradition here in Oslo and recommended for people of all ages.
2. St Hanshaugen Park
In St. Hanshaugen district, there is one of the largest parks in Oslo and a popular leisure area for locals. The district has its name from St. Hanshaugen Park that lies centrally within it, where the citizens used to celebrate summer solstice. I consider this park perfect to arrange, for example, an after-work picnic, where one can relax and turn this peaceful place in his or her own terrace. Walking up the hill it’s also possible to have a wonderful view of Oslo. What are you waiting for? Get your plaid, some fresh food, and book your seat at this wonderful natural table!
3. Ekeberg Park
Ekeberg Park is close to Oslo city centre and can be reached by car, tram or bus. My favourite attraction of this park is certainly the huge green area on a hill that offers a spectacular view of both the city and Oslo fjord. What better way, in summertime, to have a romantic picnic waiting for the late sunset, with a bottle of good wine, barbeque and an amazing scenario to look at.
Sognsvann, one of the lakes around Oslo, is just 15 minutes by metro from the city centre and five minutes’ walk to this little paradise. The lake is a perfect place for a picnic in Oslo and pull-the-plug from the daily grind of city life. Sognsvann is absolutely recommended for nature lovers and who desire to have a picnic combined with running, swimming or other sport activities. Is it not a coincidence that every year in August, swimming and running in Sognsvann are the part of the Oslo Triathlon?
Hovedøya is the island closest to Oslo city centre, with beautiful green areas, beaches and cultural heritage. Sandy beach, sanitary facilities, jetty, fishing area, disabled toilets make Hovedøya one of the most equipped places where to plan your picnic day in Oslo. I personally love this gem, especially when in summer, Mar’yana and I want to escape from the Oslo city life, without going too far. The trip by ferry takes just five minutes from Aker Brygge. Don’t forget trash bags, a wine opener, a blanket, so that you can relax and enjoy your picnic time around Oslo Fjord.
Jeløya, Oslo Region (Plus 1)
For those who like to tie picnic and an inspiring trekking tour to discover less known places just an hour from Oslo, my personal advice is to arrange a day trip, better on weekends, in southern Jeløy peninsula, in the municipality of Moss in Østfold County. Jeløya is today best known for its beaches, its scenery, a swarming harbour with boats and country manor houses and farms. In Jeløya, there are large green spaces, forests, several beautiful beaches, both child-friendly and sandy, as well as pebble beaches.
Some of the beaches are almost full of people, while others are great beaches that you can have all to yourself, even on sunny days. Jeløya, which many call Oslofjorden’s pearl is the unique place to find yourself and plan your picnic and one-day tour diving in an amazing countryside scenario rich of art, culture, history, nature and relax. The perfect ingredients to plan your perfect picnic day outside Oslo.