One thing that they do not tell you when you plan to live in Norway is that the night life is incredibly less lax, despite the drinking age being eighteen. Norwegian bars and clubs have various ages limits for entry, mainly ranging between 20+, 23+ and 25+ with fees ranging from free to ten pound. This can be quite a shock to students of England and Wales, being accustomed to mostly free or cheap entry to all places.
Another shock, although one that was discovered before moving, is that I would be saying goodbye to three pound ciders and hello to ten pound cider cans half the size of what I would have at the local pub in Cardiff. But the alcohol is taxed this high as an aid to curb alcoholism in Norway, or at least attempt to.
It has been more than two months since I moved to Norway and, although clubbing is not necessarily my scene, this is my student guide to three must-visit quirky bars in Oslo.
Home to the souls of jazz, Blå is the place to be on a Sunday night with a free, three-set concert performed by the vibrant Frank Znort Quartet. The outdoor area and bar is what it is famous for, with curious illustrations coating the walls. The prices are cheaper but the size of the drinks leave a lot to be desired, though it is not much of a loss when you have this rocking band to dance to for a few hours.
Price Range: 89NOK +
Just this week, my flatmate Rosa took me to Oslo Camping for a belated birthday gift. Oslo Camping is an eighteen-hole crazy golf course that’s bottom floor turns into a bar with live DJs every Friday and Saturday night. I loved Oslo Camping after dark because you can relax in a booth or you can play golf with your friends as you enjoy a pint.
Price Range: 100NOK +
As a lover of hidden gems, I enjoy visiting speakeasys once in a while in Cardiff for their impossibly genius cocktail concoctions. The Thief Oslo, provides this with their menu inspired by the art showcased at the Astrup Fearnley museum.
Of course, the prices for these creations are higher than the usual student haunt. I included this as the final quirky bar that is a must visit because, seriously, when will you ever drink from a porcelain shoe?
Price Range: 160NOK +