This floating castle appears to be from an enchanted fable, but in actuality it is Europe's best preserved Renaissance water castle.
The Royal Palace in Oslo, Norway was built in the first half of the 19th century as the Norwegian residence of the French-born King Charles III of Norway, who reigned as king of both Norway and Sweden. The palace is located at the end of Karl Johans gate in central Oslo, and is surrounded by the Palace Park with the Palace Square in the front.
King Charles John chose the site for the permanent royal palace on the western side of Christiania in 1821 and commissioned the officer and inexperienced architect, Danish-born Hans Linstow, to design the building.
The Parliament approved the stipulated cost of 150,000 speciedaler to be financed by the sale of government bonds. In 1825, King Charles XIV John laid down the foundation stone beneath the altar of what would be the palace chapel. Linstow originally planned a building of only two stories with projecting wings on both sides of the main façade.
King Charles John never had the pleasure of living in his palace before he died in 1844. The building’s first occupants were his son, Oscar I, and Queen Josephine. It was soon concluded that the royal family needed a more spacious residence, so the wings facing the garden were extended, and the provisional steep roof was replaced by a more elegant flat roof.
The palace, like all royal residence in Norway, is guarded by His Majesty The King’s Guard; the Royal Guards. Since public tours began in 2002, the general public has been able to view and appreciate the beauty that the palace still boasts. The daily changing of the guards has also become a popular tourist attraction in recent years.
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