After spending the night at the Park Inn by Radisson Oslo Airport, we decided to visit the SAS Museum before riding the train into the city. The museum is only open on Sundays and Tuesdays, so we couldn’t pass up the chance to check it out given that it aligned with our schedule.
The SAS Museum is located sort of directly across the runway from the main terminal. If you could just walk out across the tarmac, you’d be there in a jiffy.
But instead, you have to go the long way around which would make it about a 3-mile trek. My wife vetoed that so we took the bus from the airport terminal.
Map of Oslo Airport and SAS Museum
We bought our bus tickets from a transit desk at the airport. At about $4 each way, the tickets aren’t cheap for what amounts to a less than 10-minute ride. The bus runs once or twice an hour, depending on the time of day, so you might have to wait a bit.
The SAS Museum has its own bus stop, but you still need to pay attention so you don’t miss it.
SAS Museum Bus Stop
We pretty much had the place to ourselves. I think there might have been one other family there at the time.
There were two older guys working when we arrived. I assume they were retired SAS employees who volunteer at the museum and I would have loved to chat with them as I’m sure they had some great stories to tell. But alas, they didn’t speak much English. So we smiled, exchanged pleasantries, and headed on in.
The museum itself is a fantastic collection of SAS memorabilia. It seems that every square foot of wall space is covered with some sort of photo, poster, or other artifact from SAS’s long history.
The first exhibit you come to is a mock-up of a plane.
SAS Museum Plane
All the seats are first class.
The cockpit of the mock-up includes a flight simulator which was staffed by one of the volunteers. He seemed to enjoy helping the kids get the plane in the air and then turning them loose to fly around Bergen, Norway.
SAS Museum Flight Simulator
We sort of left the kids to fly the plane and used our time to see the rest of the museum while occasionally coming back to check on them. There is display case after display case of memorabilia, pretty much everything you can imagine from SAS’s history.
One of my favorite parts of the museum was the exhibit covering the early polar routes. I had never really thought about it, but it makes sense that SAS would have played a significant role in the development of these fascinating routes over the top of the world.
SAS Museum Polar Route Memorabilia
Note the 4-person survival sleeping bag. I wonder if you got to pick your bag mates?
SAS Museum Polar Route Survival Gear
The main exhibit space has a loft at one end. A collection of SAS advertising posters lines the ramp to the upper level.
SAS Museum Advertising Posters
The balcony gives a birds-eye view of the main floor.
SAS Museum Main Floor
The balcony has the collection of flight attendant uniforms as well as an early check-in kiosk.
SAS Museum Check-In Kiosk
My kids loved all the model planes.
SAS Museum Model Planes
Especially the ones with the cutaway sections where you could see the passengers inside.
SAS Museum Planes With Cutaway View
SAS stopped flying the Queen of the Skies in 1987. The United 747 will soon be but a memory itself.
SAS Museum Scandinavian 747
SAS was a founding member of Star Alliance, a fact of which they are quite proud, so many of the other Star Alliance airlines are also represented. I was happy to see the United tulip instead of the globe.
SAS Museum United Tulip Livery
By this point our kids were mostly done
flying crashing the simulator but were ready to check out the kids area. Among other activities, it had one of the Lego airplanes. As it should.
SAS Museum Kids Area
There are different versions of vintage seats to try while you’re waiting for the kids.
SAS Museum Parents Waiting Area
And then it was nearly closing time so we made our way to the door. On the way out, I noticed what I thought might be a Star Gold lounge and started to pull out my United Premium 1K card to gain entry. But then I realized it was the museum cafe, which was closed. I’m not sure when or if it’s open.
SAS Museum Cafe
We then headed outside to catch the bus back to the terminal and from there the NSB train into the city.
Tips For visiting The SAS Museum
The hours are very limited. The SAS museum is open noon to 4 PM on Sunday and 10 AM to 3 PM on Tuesday.
We took bus 855 from and to the airport. The stop is directly in front of the museum. If you’re arriving by car, there is a huge parking lot across the street. It also seems like it would be possible to walk from the airport. I don’t think all of the roads have sidewalks, but they were quiet enough that you could probably walk on the side or in the grass beside the road.
I don’t recall any food being served at the museum, despite the presence of the cafe, so bring your own snacks.
A lot of the exhibits are only in Norwegian, but with the kids, I don’t really have enough time to read everything anyway.
Travis and his family at the SAS Museum
SAS Museum Oslo Airport Bottom Line
The SAS Museum is a must for fans of SAS, Star Alliance, or the history of polar exploration.
It’s only open for a few hours on each of two days per week, and takes a bit of effort to get to, but it’s well worth it if you have a long layover at the Oslo Airport and can make it fit your schedule.