Last time I was in Oslo, the Opera house was the new poster boy of the harbor. Since then it has been construction time again, to borrow the name of the acclaimed third album by Depeche Mode.

I walked up the somewhat slippery slope of the Opera house roof and had a look at the surroundings. A decade ago, the area called Bjørvika north of the Opera was very much under construction. Today it’s a new area bustling with shops and activity.

Munch museum, Oslo The Munch museum.

And then there is of course the Munch museum building, the new kid on the block. Last year the new National Museum opened at Aker Brygge, being the largest museum in the Nordics. But despite it having several of Edvard Munch’s famous paintings, an additional museum was built to showcase the width of his artistry. Today the Munch museum is an interesting building in its own right, located next to the water.

Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, Oslo Canal next to Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art.

Another interesting area is Tjuvholmen, the peninsula sticking out from Aker Brygge. Once a haven for smugglers and thieves, until the thieves got hanged there (as the name implies). Today the area is very different after a large urban renewal project. Among all the carefully designed buildings, the one that sticks out the most is the Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, including a sculpture park at the very tip of the peninsula.

I walked along the gleaming buildings at Tjuvholmen Allé to locate the spot where Christopher Nolan filmed a scene for 2020 movie Tenet. Even one of the hottest directors in the movie industry hand-picked this place.

I sat down for an amazing gelato on a table next to the movie location, trying to take in the surroundings. I’m the only one that is alone, everybody else are couples or a bunch of friends, seeming to be happy and content. Through many years, Norway has been rated one of the happiest countries in the world, and that confidence seems to reflect in the last decade of construction.


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