Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen: a tourist’s guide

Kristiansborg Palace is an architectural building saturated with Danish history, traditions and culture. Be sure to visit the attraction if you want to feel the spirit of the capital. The castle is located on the island of Slotsholmen. Today, Christiansborg in Copenhagen is a symbol of the capital and, undoubtedly, a symbolic landmark of the whole country.

Christiansborg Palace

general information

Near Copenhagen there is a harbor where the small island of Slotsholmen is located, it was this place that was chosen for the construction of the royal residence of Christiansborg. Formal receptions are held here today. The uniqueness of the castle complex lies in the fact that three authorities of the country are concentrated in one building – legislative, executive and judicial. Many of the halls are run by the Danish Parliament – Folketing, in addition, the Prime Minister’s administration is located in the castle, and meetings of the Supreme Court are held.

Slotsholmen Island, Copenhagen
Slotsholmen Island

Interesting fact! Previously, an ancient fortress built in the 12th century was located on the site of the castle.

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The modern version of the castle in Copenhagen is almost a modern building, since the last reconstruction dates from the 20th century. The 106-meter-high palace tower, decorated with two crowns, is an observation deck from where you can explore the entire capital.

Historical reference

The island, where they began to build the castle, appeared artificially when a canal was dug, which became between it and the rest of the land. The first palace appeared in 1167 at the direction of Bishop Absalon, who is considered the founder of the capital. However, in the middle of the 13th century, nothing remained of the castle – it was destroyed by an army of enemies. The palace was rebuilt, but in the middle of the 14th century the enemy army again burned it to the ground.

Christiansborg Palace in 1698

At the beginning of the 18th century, the reigning monarch Christian VI issued a decree on the construction of a new residence. The first project belonged to architect Elias David Houser. Construction work continued until the mid-18th century. The palace with magnificent Baroque chambers served as a monarch’s residence for about half a century and was destroyed by a strong fire. Then the royal family moved to another castle – Amalienborg.

Christiansborg Palace in 1746

After some time, the king issued a decree on the restoration of the castle complex in Copenhagen, for which he invited a specialist Hansen. Construction work lasted from the beginning to the middle of the 19th century. However, the ruling monarch Frederick VI for some reason refused to move to a new building, only official receptions were held here, some rooms were occupied by parliament.

Interesting fact! The only king of Denmark who permanently resided in Christiansborg was Frederick VII, who occupied the chambers for 11 years. In the second half of the 19th century, the palace burned down again.

The neo-Baroque-style palace complex was created by specialist Torvald Jogenson. The architect won a tender for construction work. The castle was built for almost two decades. The roof was planned to be tiled, however, according to the final project, copper sheet was used. The spire was decorated with a weather vane in the form of two crowns.

Equestrian monument of Christian IX
Monument to Christian IX

The castle complex is completed by a monument to Christian IX. The sculptor from Denmark created the statue for 20 years, then it was installed in front of the Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen.

Useful information! When construction work was underway, the ruins of a palace belonging to Bishop Absalon were discovered. Since 1924, an exhibition dedicated to a historical find has been organized in Kristiansborg, many interesting historical facts have been collected here.

The structure of the palace complex

Christiansborg Palace Complex in Copenhagen is the current residence of the royal family, part of the premises is occupied by:

  • Danish Parliament
  • Prime Minister
  • Supreme Court.
Royal Throne at Christiansborg Palace

The palace library contains more than 80 thousand books. Next to the parliament, there are established royal stables, museums – theatrical and Arsenal, where a rich exposition of royal carriages, ancient weapons and royal clothes is presented. The castle chapel is operational – it is still crowned and holds baptismal rites. After visiting the palace complex, it is pleasant to take a walk in the garden, where monuments to royal people and fountains are installed.

Interesting fact! The total length of the canals surrounding the castle complex is more than 2 km. The castle is connected to the capital by eight bridges.

Ballroom with wall-mounted carpets

Part of the chambers of Christiansborg, open to tourists, amazes with luxury and rich decoration. The premises are decorated with paintings, tapestries, sculptures, which are of historical and artistic value.

The most remarkable part of the castle complex in Copenhagen is the balcony, from where the names of the new Danish monarchs are announced in a festive atmosphere. On days when there are no Parliament meetings, tourists are allowed to visit working classrooms.

Palace rooms open to tourists
  • Velvet Hall – here the royal family welcomes guests, decorates the room – a massive armchair upholstered in red velvet, which is woven in India.
  • Throne Room at Christiansborg Palace
    Throne room
  • The Throne Hall is the official premises where the Queen receives foreign guests. New Year’s events are held here.
  • The Knights’ Hall is the heart of the castle, the largest of the rooms, able to accommodate 400 people, richly decorated with tapestries, silver, porcelain and glass chandeliers. 17 tapestries depict the history of Denmark 1000 years long.
  • Library – is a private collection of books that has been collected for many centuries. The founder of the library is Frederick V. Also in this room tea parties and meetings are held in an informal setting.
  • Library at Christiansborg Palace
  • Kristiansborg cuisine – once here, you will be transported to May 15, 1937 when, in the palace, a gala dinner was prepared for 275 people. In the kitchen, not only the atmosphere and interior were recreated, but even the smells of cooked dishes.

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Practical information

Schedule of Christiansborg Palace

1. Schedule:

  • from May to September, daily – from 09-00 to 17-00;
  • from October to April, every day except Monday – from 10-00 to 17-00.

It is important! You can familiarize yourself with the schedule of the palace complex in Copenhagen in more detail on the official website.

2. The price of a complex ticket:

  • adult – 150 kroons;
  • students – 125 kroons;
  • Children under 18 years old admission is free.

It is important! You can also purchase tickets to visit individual halls and rooms. You can get acquainted with their cost on the official website.

3. The Christiansborg restaurant operates on the territory of the palace complex, and a ticket for a tour of the castle also entitles you to a 10% discount in some neighboring cafes and restaurants.

4. There is a gift shop in the palace where you can buy jewelry, thematic literature, dishes, textiles, posters, puzzles, postcards, magnets.

350S bus

5. You can get to the castle in Copenhagen:

  • by bus: 1A, 2A, 26, 40, 66, 350S, the Royal Library stop;
  • metro station “Kongens Nytorv st.”;
  • by train to the Central Station or Norreport Street.

It is important! Parking options near the palace are extremely limited.

More detailed useful information is presented on the website:

Prices on the page are for May 2018.

Kristiansborg Palace, built of granite and copper, has been the center of the three branches of power in Denmark for eight hundred years.

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