Mountains, lakes, and sauna
My adventure started way different than expected because Dodo (a friend from university) and me missed our flight. We were there, we just spent too much time in the bookstore so when we went to the gate, but the plane was already gone. A new booking later and many hours at different airports we finally landed in Oslo. So, what can I tell you about Oslo?
In my education to become a primary school teacher in Austria, I attended the course “Play, Movement, Nature and Outdoor Education” at Oslo Met. The university is very new, light flooded and inviting. When you enter you immediately face the information desk with very nice and helpful people whom you will need from time to time throughout the semester. The university has a cafeteria and many learning spaces. You can also book rooms for private group sessions for projects. One week before the university started, we had the chance to take part in the “buddy week” where you meet many new people of different universities and do things like picknick in the park, going to parties and many more nice activities.
The course itself was in my opinion just awesome because we had the perfect combination between theory and practical lessons. We learned for instance about Food literacy and then went in the school garden, harvested potatoes, onions and other veggies and cooked them in a big pot in the outdoor kitchen. We also had an overnight stay in Strandheim in some cabins directly next to the sea. We all loved this trip where we practiced circus and had some on site research of animals living in the sea. These were two days of real bonding and getting to know each other better.
From the associations I attended the” Osi Friluft” association which is known for going hiking, making bonfires and which aim it is to spend a nice quality time with good people in nature. With them I experienced many very exciting trips such as hiking on the highest mountain of Norway “Galdhøpiggen” and the annual Christmas party in a cabin in the woods.
As I was not accepted in an SiO apartment I started digging through Facebook groups and landed in the end in a Whatsapp group where a German girl was searching for a flat partner. She had some private connections to an older couple in Norway and so we were able to rent a little bit outside of Oslo an apartment.
Oslo, a city where so much is possible. In the week of “Studentsliplet” it was possible to join the whole week many different activities for free. I attended for instance the “Salt sauna”, watched “West side story” in the Salt cinema, went to a paint and zip, had a tour in the opera and a city tour. Besides that, the city offers many saunas, you can go kayaking or secondhand shopping and many more nice things. The city has a very good infrastructure, and the metro also brings you at some points directly to some nature spots.
Hints from my experience:
DNT Membership (cabin membership)à 30€ per year and you get a key for many cabins around Oslo. You book online and can sleep there for just 5€ per night.
To good to go à Oslo is very expensive, also the food so this app saves you some money
Grønland à for cheaper fruit and vegetable shopping (the metro station is also called “Grønland”)
Ticket for public transport à use “Ruter” App and buy the 30 days ticket if it makes sense for you
Orientation à Use for public transport times and routes “Ruter” or “Google Maps”
Alkohol à check the time when you can buy beer and cider in the supermarket. For wine and harder stuff, you need to go to extra stores.
Travelling à ESN is a good organization to go on trips also out of Oslo (I went to Bergen and to the Finnish Lappland)
Fitness à Membership “Athletica”; sauna, active courses and the gym are included
Some last words
At this semester abroad I had the opportunity to meet so many nice people from all over the world and I left with many new friendships. I gained many experiences that I would’nt have without the stay in Oslo. I definitely got more in touch with nature, “Friluftsliv” became a part of me and reminded me to enjoy nature and be outside no matter the weather and as every Norwegian says “There is nothing like bad weather, there are just bad clothes”. Furthermore, I am more confident to do things like hiking by myself. However, I also think that this stay abroad will be beneficial for my future work as I did an internship in an international school and worked there once a week one day. I saw a different way of teaching and it showed me which work environment and methods I, for myself, support.
I am very thankful that I had the chance to go on an Erasmus to Oslo and I can’t believe how fast it was over. Enjoy!!
Text: Lisa Pichler