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Rosenborg Castle Gardens, Copenhagen

Rosenborg Castle Gardens - the oldest and most visited park in the center of Copenhagen, Denmark. Founded in the early 17th century as the private gardens of King Christian IV of Rosenberg Castle, the park also contains several other historic buildings, including the Rosenborg barracks, houses to the Royal Guard, as well as a large number of statues and monuments. In summer, the park also hosts temporary art exhibitions and other events such as concerts.

Renaissance gardens

The history of the park dates back to 1606, when King Christian IV purchased land outside the Eastern Wall of Copenhagen and founded a Renaissance garden that also supplied fruits, vegetables and flowers to the royal family in the castle of Copenhagen. The garden had a relatively small pavilion, which was later extended to the current Rosenborg Castle, which was completed in 1624. In 1634 Charles Ogier, secretary of the French ambassador to Denmark, compared the gardens with the Tuileries Garden in Paris... The drawing of Otto Haider in 1649, the oldest dated garden plan from Denmark, gives an idea of the layout of the original garden. The garden had a pavilion, statues, a fountain and much more. Its plants included mulberry, wine, apples, pears and lavender.

Baroque Gardens

Later in this century, when fashion changed, the garden was redesigned. The garden plan of 1669 shows a garden maze, a typical feature of the garden in the Baroque style. It had a complex system of paths that led to the central space with an octagonal arbor in the center. Around 1710, after the construction of the Frederiksberg Palace, the Rosenborg Castle and its gardens were largely abandoned by the royal family, and instead the gardens were opened to the public.

Johan Cornelius Krieger was appointed gardener of the conservatory in 1711 and, becoming chief gardener in 1721, redesigned the baroque garden.

Rosenborg Castle Gardens, Copenhagen


The 12-hectare park is limited to the streets Gothersgade , Øster Voldgade , Sølvgade and Kronprinsessegade . Rosenborg Castle is located in the northwestern part of the park and is surrounded by a moat on three sides. The two main entrances are the Royal Gate at the corner of Gothersgade and Kronprinsessegade and the Royal Gate at the corner of Øster Voldgade and Sølvgade. There are four other entrances to the park.

The dominant feature of the landscape are two diagonal fake alleys that intersect near the center of the park and are known as the Knight's Way and the Lady's Way, while the other paths are laid out in the form of a grid. The tree-lined alleys were planted as part of Krieger's Baroque garden, but the underlying network of paths can be seen in Haders' 1649 plan.

Special areas include the Perennial Garden in front of the wall along Selvgade and the Rosary.

Rosenborg Castle Gardens, Copenhagen

Rosenborg Barracks

Located at the corner of Gothersgade and Øster Voldgade, the Rosenborg barracks were originally a pavilion and two long winter garden buildings built by Lambert van Haven for Christian V. In 1709 they were built together to form one large greenhouse complex, and in 1743 it was transformed into a baroque style by Johan Cornelius Krieger. From 1885 to 1886 it was converted for use by the Royal Life Guard by the engineer Ernst Peymann. In 1985, they moved to a new premises in Høvelte between Allerød and Birkerød and starting from Rosenborg Casarma only placed security guards on duty in Copenhagen.

Commandant's house 

The Commandant's House is located to the left of the main entrance to Rosenborg Castle and overlooks the lawn. It was built from 1760 to 1763 by Jacob Fortling. Today the building hosts specialized exhibitions. Today the building is used as an exhibition space.

Rosenborg Castle Gardens, Copenhagen


Slotsforvalterboligen fronts Øster Voldgade. It was built in 1688 and extended by an additional floor in 1777. Through the gate you can get into the park.

House Gartner attached to the Slotsforvalterboligen. It was built at about the same time.

Hercules Pavilion

The Hercules Pavilion stands at the end of Cavalerangen and takes its name from the Hercules statue, located in a deep niche between two Tuscan columns. It is surrounded by two small niches with the statues of Orpheus and Eurydice. Three statues were made by Italian sculptor Giovanni Baratta and purchased by Frederick IV during his visit to Italy.

Rosenborg Castle Gardens, Copenhagen

Forged barbecues and arbours

Along the Kronprinsessegade and part of the Gothersgade, the park is surrounded by a wrought iron grating consisting of 16 small pavilions overlooking the street.

After the Copenhagen fire of 1795, there was an urgent need for new housing, and Crown Prince Frederick granted the southern strip of his garden to build a new street that would connect Gothersgade with Sølvgade. It was named Kronprinsessegade after Crown Princess Maria Sophie.  Soon, new houses emerged along the southern side of the street, but at the same time it became necessary to fence off the garden, and the city architect Peter Maine was given the task . He had just returned from Paris, where he was struck by Pont Neuf. with its iron grill and many small stores and the street life that surrounded him. Inspired by this, he designed a new grid at the edge of the park with 14 small shopping pavilions, which were completed in 1806. The last two pavilions, opposite the Landemarket, were built only in 1920. Until then, this place was occupied near the two buildings: Exercerhus and Rosenborg Brøndanstalt .

The pavilions are built in the Newclassical style and have six elms in width, six in depth and six in height. 

Among the goods sold from the pavilions were cakes and stockings. Later they were available to architects and artists from Roydal Arts Academy as a kind of grant. Today they are leased by the Palaces and Real Estate Agency for two years with the possibility of renewal. The required minimum opening time is 20 hours per week, and the use must be consistent with the history of the site and at the same time put it in a contemporary context.

Rosenborg Castle Gardens, Copenhagen