Grefsenkollen is indeed the best place in Oslo to sit comfortably, have a picnic and watch the sunset. I’ts only 40 minutes of easy hike from our Oslo Rønningen Hostel, and 50 minutes from our Oslo Haraldsheim Hostel, to the most spectacular view on the Oslofjord. There are many ways to reach the top – if you are lost easily, you can just follow the main road. However, if you are up for a little walk in the nature, feel free to take the forest path next to Trollvannet and enjoy the spirit of the nature.
A hiking path next to Trollvann
On the top of the hill you will find a restaurant, but if you are not in the mood for eating, there are comfortable places to just sit and relax your eyes on the tops of the trees and the Oslo city in the background.
Yet, what we consider nowadays as restaurant at Grefsenkollen has quite of the story. It started off as a sports hall that opened its door in 1927. What is special about it is that it was made out of very rough and resistant wood, everything handmade, therefore hacked out by the axe. It took only 10 months to build it which is impressive regarding the fact that there was no road to the top of the hill until 1930 which means every piece of timber had to be carried there by hand or by horses and carriages.
In 1930, it got opened as a restaurant. It quickly became a popular place for the Sunday and holiday trips, quite often the dance nights were organized. It is said that it used to be popular among young couples as a romantic getaway in 30s.
During the second world war, Grefsenkollen was occupied by the Germans and used the place as a radio and TV station since they had very valuable equipment located there. After the war, Germans surrendered peacefully. It took some years to become popular again and it was not until 50s until they started organizing sport and dance events there.
In 1960s, the restaurant was re-opened and it ended up in a private ownership by the Betzen family until 2008 when the Kloster family took over. The restaurant serves as one of the favourite places for private events and as a home to most of the employees.
So do not miss the chance – whether it is the refreshing morning recreation or evening mission to see the midnight sunset – it is easy, convenient, free and unforgettable!
Written by Sandra Meglić