Oslo city center mixes old and new architecture, and there's no better way to experience the area than on foot, especially during summer. Hotels in the area have easy access to Oslo’s cultural attractions, including the Royal Palace, art galleries, the National Museum and the History Museum.
The city’s largest shopping centers (Byporten, Paléet, Christiania Glasmagasin and Steen & Strøm) are all located in the area. Rosenkrantz' Gate is known for its bars and nightclubs, while Tinghuset and Stortorvet offer jazz and blues clubs. Lined with bars and shops, Karl Johans Gate is busy day and night. This City Center is also the venue for several street parades, and on Norway's constitution day (17 May) the area is crowded with locals in national costume.
Kvadraturen – the historical epicenter of Oslo – consists of the area between Akershus Fortress and Karl Johans Gate, Jernbanetorget and Egertorget. Named after its rectangular street pattern, this is where King Christian IV founded Christiania after the great fire of 1624. Some of Oslo’s oldest buildings are located here, and today the area boasts a number of fine art galleries and museums.