Sara Flaaen is a writer, student and model living her best life in Oslo, Norway. Here she gives us her best insider tips to her beautiful city.
NYE DEICHMANSKE BIBLIOTEK Oslo just got a new city library. I love it for being incredibly stylish, big and with loads of natural light. It’s a perfect place to work, take a break from the hectic everyday life — it’s even a good place for a date. It also very much reminds me of the library in my hometown where I spent hours and hours in my upbringing. I’ve always loved reading.Libraries are a safe space to breathe, to escape.
CITY STROLLING One of the greatest things about Oslo is its very handy size — it’s among the smallest capitals in the world, after all. I say, walk everywhere and I honestly do! I love moving around by foot in Oslo at all hours, whether I’m rushing from A to B, or whether I’m on a weekend stroll with a cup of coffee in my hand and music in my ears. There are lots of things to see. It’s a green city. It’s a clean city. It’s a safe city.
Words by Sara Flaaen
Photos by Madeleine Lohne
OSLO BOTANICAL GARDENS
I kind of feel like Botanisk hage is a little bit of a hidden gem, a place way too many Oslo’ers forget to enjoy. I go to the gardens to run, or to enjoy a coffee with a friend in one of the many almost hidden, cosy corners. I must admit to doing quite a few photoshoots there too — it’s such a beautiful place no matter the season.
ST. HANSHAUGEN PARK
St. Hanshaugen parken is close to where I live. The Park is situated in a hill, with a nice view over the city from above. It has loads of benches to sit, and all the way on the top there’s even a lovely chapel and a fountain. In the summer I love coming here to read or have a picnic with friends. During spring and autumn, it’s nice to bring blankets and some extra layers of clothes — and some coffee on a thermos or a bottle of wine. When Oslo was in corona lockdown, I walked to this park several days a week.
VILLA PARADISO, GRÜNERLØKKA
If you’re looking for a taste of Italy in Oslo, I’d say Villa Paradiso is it. It has now expanded as a chain and has several restaurants in different locations in the city, but the one in Grünerløkka will always be my favourite. Not only is it located in one of the most vibrant parts of the city, a destination in itself, but I do believe it has such a genuine, Italian atmosphere. Living nearby, I’ve celebrated many a big and small occasion here. I love the interior, the menu, the service. There’s a reason there’s always a line for tables. I’ll also tell you this: their gluten free pizza is the best I’ve ever tasted in the world.