This place is on the list every time a friend visits Oslo. Situated atop a hill high above the city, the sprawling cabin-style cafe and restaurant dates from 1891. It’s all very Norsk, built from logs with detailed wood carvings and dragon figureheads. In summer the views from the terrace over Oslo and the fjord are spectacular. In winter it’s cosy and atmospheric inside, sitting by an open fire under the watchful eye of a stuffed deer over the mantle.
At the formal restaurant you can try Norwegian delicacies like cod tongue, reindeer or salmon. I usually opt for a snack from the cafe – it’s a cheaper option offering hot lunches, traditional open sandwiches and treats. Norwegians are truly excellent at baked goods, and the apple cake at Frognerseteren is the best I’ve ever had.
The area was originally a farm, and lots of quaint outbuildings dot the area. Dozens of forest trails in the surrounds are popular with locals year-round for hiking, cycling and cross-country skiing.
Frognerseteren is easily accessed by the metro line 1, which itself offers spectacular views as it snakes into the hills. You can take it all the way to the Frognerseteren terminus, but I always hop off a few stops earlier to check out the imposing Holmenkollen ski jump. You can then walk the rest of the way up the hill – the apple cake tastes better if you’ve earned it!