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Akershus fortress in Oslo

When you visit Oslo on one of our roundtrips, make sure to see Akershus Fortress. Its central location makes the fortress grounds a popular recreational area for tourists and locals alike.

Akershus Fortress is a medieval castle situated in Oslo city centre. Throughout its history it has had great strategic and symbolic value for Oslo and Norway. Akershus Fortress is still a military area, but it is open daily to the public until 21.00

The building of Akershus Castle and Fortress commenced in the late 1290s under King Haakon V. The medieval castle, which was completed in the 14th century, had a strategic location at the very tip of the headland, and withstood a number of sieges throughout the ages, primarily by Swedish forces. Its immediate proximity to the sea was very important as naval power was vital in protecting the interests of Norwegian commerce, which was largely carried out by sea during the period.

The castle was modernised under King Christian IV (1588-1648) and converted into a Renaissance castle and royal residence. During the 17th and 18th centuries, the castle fell into disrepair and restoration work did not start until 1899.

Akershus Fortress is still a military area, but it is open daily to the public until 21.00. In addition to the castle, the Norwegian Armed Forces Museum and the Norwegian Resistance Museum are located there. The Norwegian Ministry of Defence and Defence Staff Norway also share modern headquarters in the eastern part of Akershus Fortress.

Norwegian Royalty are buried in the Royal Mausoleum in the castle. They include, King Sigurd I, King Haakon V, Queen Eufemia, King Haakon VII, Queen Maud, King Olav V and Crown Princess Märtha.

Facts about Akershus Fortress:

  • Akershus Fortress was built to protect Oslo
  • It has also been used as a prison
  • Work started on the castle around the late 1290s under King Haakon V
  • The fortress has successfully survived many sieges, primarily by Swedish forces
  • It houses the Royal Mausoleum

In Akershus Fortress you can:

  • See the fantastic medieval castle
  • Get insight of the Norwegian military in the Norwegian Armed Forces Museum 
  • Learn about the war at the Norwegian Resistance Museum 
  • Relax in beautiful surroundings


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You can visit Oslo on all our tours - here's a selection


Norway in a nutshell®

The most popular tour in Norway


in a nutshell

Other things to do in Oslo

Places to stay in Oslo