See one of the finest and most beautiful cultural spots in Norway, with a fortress, museums and other buildings where many important historical events took place.
Akershus Festning (Akershus Fortress) is a magnificent construction along the seafront of Oslo, the capital of Norway. It’s one of the most distinctive symbols in the city and a place with great historic importance. Explore an outstanding fortress, a castle, several museums, the Royal Mausoleum and other impressive construction dating back to the 17th century. It’s also the main venue for official functions of the Norwegian government.
Oslo was besieged in 1287. After this attack it became clear that the city needed a stronger defensive center point. The construction of Akershus Fortress and Castle was started about 1299 by order of King Håkon V. Explore Akershus Fortress and discover a critical building for the country at the time. It had a strategic location near the sea, which was essential for commerce and naval power.
Start your exploration at the Visitor Center. Here you’ll find interesting exhibits and a small shop where you can enjoy a coffee and buy interesting books about the place. Choose one of the available tours and hear about the most significant events during the 700 years of history of the Akershus Fortress. Learn about the prison known as the Slavery because the prisoners were rented out to work. Find out about its famous criminals, including the robber and jail-breaker Ole Pedersen Høiland.
One of the most important buildings is the Renaissance Akershus Castle. It was renovated in the 17th century but you can still see remains of the original medieval castle. Admire opulent halls and dungeons, rooms that used to belong to powerful kings. See the splendor of a royal residence that played an important part in the decision to move the capital of Norway from Bjørgvin (now Bergen) to Oslo. Visit the Royal Mausoleum, where several royal figures are laid to rest.
Stop at the museums located in Akershus Fortress. Find out about the country’s defensive history at the Norwegian Armed Forces Museum and learn about World War II at the Norwegian Resistance Museum.