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The capital of Norway is called "The Green Capital" because of all the beautiful parks. Oslo is situated beside a fjord and surrounded by forest-covered mountains. Around the 14th century it had a population of 3,000 and was the home of King Håkon V - famous for his Akershus Castle and Fortress. In 1624, Oslo was destroyed in a large fire. Denmark's King Christian IV rebuilt it, but renamed the city Christiania.

In 1925, the name was changed back to Oslo. In the 19th century, Oslo experienced many of the same changes as other large cities across Europe, as the Industrial Revolution made its mark and the city grew rapidly. The central parts of Oslo, around the Karl Johans Gate Boulevard and the Royal Palace, are simply referred to as Centrum - the centre. Popular sights in this area are the Stortinget Parliament building and Oslo Cathedral. Akershus castle and fortress are located in the heart of the city right next to the Oslo fjord.

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Aker Brygge

Another big tourist attraction is Aker Brygge, right across the water from Akershus fortress. Here you can find restaurants, shopping malls, cosy promenade areas and the terminal for the Nesodden boats.

Bygdøy peninsula

One of the most popular places to visit in Oslo is Bygdøy, a peninsula not far from the Frogner district. Here are many popular museums, including the Viking Ship Museum, the Kon-Tiki Museum, The HL Center (Holocaust Center), The Marine Museum and the Norwegian Folklore Museum. During the summer many people also head to Bygdøy for its beach.

Munch Museum

Edvard Munch has a unique position in the history of art, as one of the Expressionist movement's early pioneers. The Munch Museum hosts a unique collection of more than 1,100 of Munch's paintings, including his most famous work, The Scream. The Viking Ship Museum presents great Viking ship discoveries from Gokstad, Oseberg and Tune, as well as other finds from Viking tombs around the Oslo Fjord including the world's two best-preserved wooden Viking ships built in the 9th century.

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