Drøbak is the only all-year christmas town in Norway, and every year they recive about 20 000 letters to the Norwegian "Julenisse" from all around the world.

Drøbak is a town and the centre of the municipality of Frogn, in Akershus county, Norway. The city is located along the Oslofjord, and has 13,409 inhabitants.


Drøbak and Frogn was established as a parish on its own through a royal decree Sept. 8, 1823. It had been a part of Ås parish.

Drøbak was established as a municipality January 1, 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). It was merged with Frogn January 1, 1962.

The old bakery in Drøbak

Traditionally, Drøbak was the winter harbour of Norway's capital, Oslo, since in severe winters the fjord will freeze from outside Drøbak all the way up to Oslo. It had a city status between 1842 and 1962, upon which point the municipality was merged into the rural municipality Frogn and lost its city status. The city status was regained by the municipality council on 13 February 2006. It was also decided that adjacent villages such as Heer would be included within the city.

A notable event in Drøbak's history is the World War II sinking of the German cruiser Blücher in the Drøbak narrows (only 1 mile (1.5 km) wide), on the early morning of 9 April 1940. The cruiser was transporting German soldiers and bureaucrats for the planned swift occupation of Oslo, but the Battle of Drøbak Sound resulting in the sinking by the Oscarsborg fortress delayed this, and thus allowed for the evacuation of the Norwegian Royal Family, parliament, and cabinet, and for the nation's gold reserves to be denied the occupiers

Early Drøbak had ferries that crossed the fjord, in modern times they have largely been replaced by an underwater tunnel. However, some of the old ferries are still used as "floating restaurants" during the summer.


In summertime, cruise ships visit Oslo almost every day. Often, as many as four or five cruise ships visit each day, in addition to all the regular traffic, it has made Drøbak a popular sea-side tourist spot. However, the numerous restaurants, art galleries and mild summers are probably more important factors for visiting tourists.[3]

Drøbak is also known for its many art galleries. The town has a Christmas shop called Julehuset (the Christmas house), and letters often end up in Drøbak from Europe similarly to how they end up in Santa Claus, Indiana in the United States.[4]

During the summer months, there are tourist buses going from Oslo to Drøbak on day trips for tourists. Visitors can experience a traditional Norwegian fjord town. It is also a popular Oslo suburb for citizens to live as public transportation is well connected between Drøbak and Oslo, both by bus and boat.

At the marina at the approach to Drøbak is a sculpture, made by Reidar Finsrud, cast in bronze of three mermaids sitting on a rock. The sculpture was unveiled in 1999.[5]

The three mermaids in Drøbak

Drøbak Church

Square in Drøbak

lfish is open to the public and shows live video footage of the sea life in the fjord where fish, lobster and crab are often visible for the aquarium visitors. [6] Norsk Luftambulanse is headquartered in Drøbak.[7]

The name

The Norse form of the name was Drjúgbakki. The first element is drjúgr 'hard; long', the last element is bakki m '(up)hill'. This is related to the very steep roads winding down into the city center of Drøbak.

Drøbak Church

Drøbak Church (Drøbak Kirke) is located in Drøbak parish in the Søndre Follo deanery within the Diocese of Borg. The church was opened on October 29, 1776. The church was a gift from timber merchant, landowner and shipowner Niels Carlsen (1734-1809) and his wife Martha Zachariassen (1743–1821). Significant repairs were made to the church in the 1820s. Domenico Erdmann (1879–1940) led the restoration in conjunction with the 150th anniversary in 1926. [8] [9] [10] [11]


Drøbak is divided into eight notable areas. These places include:

Gyltåsen, which mainly consists of cabins and "season-housing".

Husvik, where most of the year-around boats are being kept. This area was also significant in the sinking of the German cruiser Blücher in 1940, as the location of the Husvik Battery of Oscarsborg Fortress. The guns of the battery are still in place in these hills as tourist attractions.

Sentrum (city centre), here lies "Julehuset" and most of the local stores. Most of the City Centre is being protected by local laws as "Verneverdig" which in short terms means that it has a significant cultural value and cannot be changed or rebuilt. Therefore, much of the city centre looks like it did 100 years ago.

Skiphelle and Elleflaten, an area consisting of suburban housing and a tiny hotel called "Drøbak Fjordhotel".

Sogsti, consisting of much of Drøbak's suburban housing.

Odalen and Haveråsen is the "outer banks" of Drøbak, where the housing and population consists more of agricultural purpose.

Belsjø and Heer, the suburban housing around the large golf course surrounding most of northern Drøbak.

Ullerud and Dyrløkke, a large hill of suburban housing. Here are also the local mall and a large school up to high school level.[12]

See also

Drøbak Sound

Battle of Drøbak Sound


•Sørensen, Rolf m.fl.: Frogn bygdebokverk, Frogn kommune, 1996-, 5 b. (in Norwegian), ISBN 82-993990-0-9

Oscarsborg Fortress(in English)

•Drange, Erling: Drøbak fra nord til syd : husene forteller historie (2001), (in Norwegian) ISBN 82-996109-0-7

Julehuset (The Christmas house) Archived December 30, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. (in English)

Three mermaids in Drøbak, Norway mermaidsofearth.com (in English)

Drøbak Akvarium (in Norwegian)

Norsk Luftambulanse, Headquarters in Drøbak (in Norwegian)

"Drøbak kirke og kirkegård". lokalhistoriewiki.no. Retrieved September 1, 2018.

Sigrid Marie Christie, Håkon Christie. "Drøbak kirke". Norges Kirker. Retrieved September 1, 2018.

Bernhard Magnussen. "Niels Carlsen". Norsk biografisk leksikon. Retrieved September 1, 2018.

Dag Myklebust. "Domenico Erdmann". Norsk kunstnerleksikon. Retrieved September 1, 2018.

Svein Askheim. Drøbak at Store norske leksikon (in Norwegian)

Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Drøbak.

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Drøbak.

Visit Drøbak (in English)

Introduction to Drøbak (in English)

A taste of Drøbak VIDEO (in English)

Drøbak travel guide from Wikivoyage


Drøbak is a town of historical interest; this is where the German ship Blücher was sunk during the German attack on Norway on the morning of April 9, 1940. The ship transported German soldiers passing Oscarsborg Fortress, and the sinking of the ship delayed the German invasion and allowed the government, parliament, and royal family to evacuate to England. The fortress is located five minutes by ferry from Santa’s post office, with hotels, spas, and even an opera each year.

Get in

By plane

Oslo Airport Gardermoen, Norway’s Main Airport. Travelling time by car to Drøbak is approximately 1 hour (50% more during busy day hours through Oslo Ring Road).

For more information on facilities at and around Oslo Airport, Gardermoen, see the Oslo Airport, Gardermoen article.

By boat

Good moorings if you have your own boat.

In the period April 15 to September 30 you may travel to Drøbak by ferry. The ferryboat leaves every day from Aker Brygge in Oslo, landing at Sjøtorget in Drøbak. This ferry stops at Oscarsborg Fortress and Håøya.

By bus

Bus routes 541 and 542 from Oslo, about 40 minutes away. The fare is 74kr.

By car

European Route E6 is going through Frogn municipality in the north-south direction (from Oslo and the Swedish border). Follow signs to Drøbak from the motorway. There is a sub sea tunnel at Norwegian National Road 23 under the Oslofjord from the west side of the fjord. (Hurum and Drammen where connected to the European Road E18)

By motorcycle

The mentioned routes for bicycles are tempting drives for MC-enthusiasts who want to avoid the motorway and enjoy curvy country roads.

By taxi

A taxi from Oslo will cost you about 500-600kr in the daytime, and about 1000kr in the evening or at night. On longer taxi rides, it's OK to bargain with the driver for a fair price.

Get around



500 m

Wikimedia maps | Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Map of Drøbak

The town of Drøbak is small, and most can be reached on foot. For tours in the wider area Follo, the bus is the best option, both north towards the capital, Oslo and south towards Østfold county.

Drøbak has good ports for small boats. The surroundings around Drøbak provide excellent opportunities to use a bicycle or motorcycle. If you drive a car, you should be aware of the many toll booths in the area. Taxi is a rather expensive alternative.

1 Ferry to Oscarsborg Fortress. edit


The three murmaids in Drøbak

1 Oscarsborg Fortress. (Ferry timetable). with a museum. Learn about the sinking of the German warship Blücher that was sunk just outside Drøbak on April 9, 1940 during the invasion of Norway. Ferry from Drøbak to the island of Oscarsborg Oscarsborg Fortress on Wikipedia Oscarsborg Fortress (Q2033069) on Wikidata edit

2 Fredrik Stabel & Avistegnernes Hus, Lindtruppbakken 1. A museum for newspaper cartoons. edit

3 Drøbak Church, Kirkegata 18. is a very beautiful 18th-century church edit

4 Drøbak Aquarium, Havnegata 4. study local fish and marine animals close up. edit

Lutefisk Museum - This museum is unique - being the world's only. It has a rather humouristic exhibition of one of Norway’s most special and traditional fish dishes, next door to the Aquarium

5 A sculpture of three murmaids. is placed in the at the approach to Drøbak, created by Reidar Finsrud and unveiled in 1999. edit

Several art galleries.


Go for a walk in the city centre, with the many art galleries. Take a look at the picturesque buildings everywhere.

Go for a sea bath in Badeparken or one of the many beaches in the summer.

1 Drøbak Golf Club, Belsjøveien 50, ☎ +47 64 98 96 50. Drøbak Golf Club has one of the most popular golf courses in Norway! Green fee: Adults NOK 400,

junior NOK 250. edit


The post office of Santa Claus - in Drøbak

1 Tregaardens Julehus (The Christmas House), Havnebakken 6. Drøbak is hometown to Santa Claus, or Julenissen in Norwegian, and he has of course an office open to public where you can buy his stuff all year long edit


1 Skipperstuen (Captain's lodge), Havnebakken 11, ☎ +47 64 93 07 03. Just up from the harbour provides good food and a splendid view to the fiord. edit

2 Kumlegaarden, Niels Carlsens gt. 11, ☎ +47 64 93 89 90. Traditional food in one of the oldest houses in Drøbak. edit

3 Miramar, Jørnsebakken 7, ☎ +47 64 93 00 68. A place to eat while looking out on the Oslofjord from the panorama windows. edit

4 Peppes Pizza, Torget 1 (on the square, in the middle of town), ☎ +47 2222 5555. 1PM -10PM, Saturdays 1PM - 11PM. American style pizza. (Also home delivery, take-away service) Peppes Pizza on Wikipedia Peppes Pizza (Q911973) on Wikidata edit

Telegrafen (To be reconstructed after fire). Lunch and dinner place, which also serves as a nightclub. edit

5 Havnekroa (in the guest harbor of Oscarsborg). varied menu at the fortress edit


1 Bageriet, Havnebakken 1. A very very very small and cosy pub. edit

Telegrafen and Reenskaug hotel (generally a bit younger crowd)

Note: The local authorities closed all food sale after midnight because they did not want people in the streets at night time. So no burgers, etc., on the streets of Drøbak.


1 Reenskaug Hotel, ☎ +47 64 98 92 00, e-mail: mail@renskaug.no. Cozy hotel in the centre of town. Fridays and Saturdays a disco on the ground floor. edit

2 Oscarsborg Hotel & Resort (Boat from the town centre), ☎ +47 64 90 40 00, e-mail: booking@oscarsborghotel.no. The hotel & resort at the historical site of Oscarsborg Fortress. edit

Go next

Hvitsten (to the south) - an idyllic little port where the famous painter Edvard Munch had his summer residence.

Son (a few miles to the south) is a cozy, traditional village and port in Vestby municipality, even smaller than Drøbak that consists of small, picturesque houses and reputable restaurants near the seafront. A popular location for different artists.

Tusenfryd Amusementpark is a necessary stop for children, on your way northwards towards Oslo.

Kilde: Wikivoyage, Wikipedia + This travel guide page was last edited at 21:33, on 6 August 2018 by Wikivoyage user Wrh2Bot. Based on work by Wikivoyage users Carsten R D, Traveler100bot, Traveler100, AndreeBot, Ground Zero, Simon Peter Hughes, Matroc, CarstenR and Jjtkk and others.

Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.




Hvitsten is the Norwegian "equivalent" to Positano, Italy, where brick houses are virtually stacked on top of each other on the hillside seemingly diving into the ocean. The difference is that the houses "stacked upon each other" here are white wooden houses.

Hvitsten download (3).jpg

Hvitsen is located midway between Drøbak and Son. The village has two popular beaches, Hvitsten beach located in the Hvitsten's harbor bay, and Emmerstadbukta a couple of kilometers south of the village center.

Around the early 1900s Hvitsten and Emmerstad were popular among the Christiania Bohemians in the capital Oslo. Today the village has a mixture of locals and holiday home owners.