Oslo Opera House – Oslo, Norway - Atlas Obscura

Oslo Opera House

The design of this beautifully crafted building was inspired by Norwegian glaciers. 


The Oslo Opera House (Operahuset i Oslo) is a beautifully crafted cultural building, whose sharp, white surface draws your imagination to an iceberg silently drifting in the ocean, with the morning sun shining though crystal blue glass windows as it would frosty water. This is no coincidence either.

The goal was to make the capital city’s Opera House, commissioned in the year 2000, feel like a part of the surrounding nature, and the building’s architect, Snøhetta, drew inspiration from icy glaciers.

The roof is sleek and easy to climb, making it the perfect destination for a Sunday walk. You can also admire the many works of art commissioned to complete the Opera House, most notably “She Lies” by Monica Bonvicini, a stainless steel and glass sculpture in the middle of the sea. 

The building’s design has earned it several awards, and it is today protected by the Norwegian Directorate for Cultural Heritage. It is a building meant to be easily accessed by the public, as a gift to the people, which is why the entrance bridge is open 24/7.

The Opera House opened in 2008, and is now the home of the Norwegian National Opera & Ballet.

Know Before You Go

The Oslo Opera House is located at the very center of the city, in the middle of the Oslo fjord, and is a 5min walk from Oslo central station.

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June 30, 2016

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