Sightseeing outside Oslo - Explore major attractions with Skibladner

Sightseeing by paddle steamer

Are you looking for a comfortable way of exploring some of the main sights around Oslo? Let the world’s oldest paddle steamer take you on a trip across Lake Mjøsa.

Mjøsa, located only half an hour north of Oslo’s Airport Gardermoen, is the largest lake in Norway. It ties together several of the Oslo region's destinations.

The paddle steamer DS Skibladner has connected the towns and villages around the lake, from Eidsvoll in the south to Lillehammer in the north, for more than 160 years. Today, the water route across Lake Mjøsa is a highly memorable, but also practical way to explore this part of the region.

From the deck of Skibladner, you have a perfect view of the beautiful landscapes that surround the lake. You can also enjoy a meal onboard in the boat's restaurant. Then go ashore at different stops to experience some of the Oslo region’s most popular sights. We give you a few suggestions on what to see below.

 

Dinner onboard Skibladner
Dinner onboard Skibladner
Photo: VisitOsloregion/Didrick Stenersen

 

Skibladner’s website provides useful suggestions on how to organize your trip. If you arrive by car, it is a good idea to park by one of Skibladner’s docks, and return here later in the day. If you travel by train, bus or bike, you may of course choose freely where to board and go ashore.

A piece of advice: Regardless of how far you will be travelling and where you start your journey, it is always a good idea to book your tickets for Skibladner in advance. “The white swan of Lake Mjøsa” is becoming more and more popular.

Highlights around Lake Mjøsa

Attractions

Attractions by Lake Mjøsa range from emerald mines via aquavit distilleries to Olympic facilities, and chances are good that you'll find something to do here that suits your interests. Here we present some of the main highlights, all easily accessible from one of Skibladner's landings.

Skibladner's southernmost stop, Eidsvoll, is the birthplace of the Norwegian constitution. In April of 1814, 112 delegates gathered here for six weeks to write and ratify the document that paved the way for Norway's independence. Today you can learn about these intense and dramatic weeks in the very house where the assembly took place, the Eidsvoll building.


In the city of Hamar, a stop on Skibladner's northbound route, you'll find one of Norway's largest medieval centres. Its main attraction, a modern glass structure covering a set of 12th century cathedral ruins, is a stunning landmark on the Mjøsa shore.

Historic experiences around Lake Mjøsa
Historic experiences around Lake Mjøsa
Photo: Visit Oslo Region/Didrick Stenersen


Skibladner also makes a stop at the Olympic town of Lillehammer, an attraction in and of itself. Here you may, among other things, visit the renowned open-air museum Maihaugen. 200 houses from the 13th century and up until today let you explore hundreds of years worth of Norwegian history in only a few hours.

Guest farms

If you'd like to make the most of your Mjøsa experience, why not spend the night on a lakefront guest farm? Not only do you get a good night’s sleep in idyllic surroundings, you also get to experience the area's famous hospitality. Hoel Guest FarmLier Guest Farm and Staur Guest Farm are a few of your options.

Outside Staur Guest Farm
Outside Staur Guest Farm
Photo: Visit Oslo Region/Didrick Stenersen

 

The cultural landscapes around Lake Mjøsa are not only beautiful to look at, they also supply large parts of Norway with fruits and vegetables. Many of the restaurants around the lake serve food made from local, fresh ingredients. In addition to the aformentioned guest farms, Skafferiet at Hovinsholm and Viken II in Totenvika are two eateries that are well worth a stop.