Earlier today, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were received by Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit at the military section of Oslo Gardermoen Airport. After two days of touring Sweden, the British royals have now ended most of their events on their first day in Oslo.
After arrival, the royals went directly to the Royal Palace in Oslo’s city centre. Here the Duke and Duchess met with King Harald and Queen Sonja. They then had a private lunch at the Royal Palace. After lunch, the Duke and Duchess went out to the Palace Square where they could see Norwegian folk music and traditional dance. From the Palace Square, they continued into the part of the Palace Park that houses Princess Ingrid Alexandra’s Sculpture Park, where they were shown around by Princess Ingrid Alexandra.
Princess Ingrid Alexandra’s Sculpture Park is part of the Palace Park and is a gift from the bank DNB on the occasion of the 25th Anniversary of the King’s reign in 2016. The project will take place over several years, and it will eventually include a total of ten sculptures. The first two sculptures, designed by children from northern Norway, were unveiled in May 2016.
At MESH Their Royal Highnesses were received by the founder of MESH Anders Mjåset, as well as Pål T. Næss, Director of Entrepreneurs and Startups at Innovation Norway. The royals met with members from four companies: Remarkable, Play Magnus, No Isolation and Motitech. After a brief introduction to what the various companies do, the royals participated in the game Kahoot, which is also a Norwegian invention.
Tonight William and Kate will take part in a dinner at Royal Palace. The hosts for dinner are His Majesty King Harald and Her Majesty Queen Sonja. Both His Majesty and the Duke will speak during the meal. After this, the Duke and Duchess will spend the night in the “King Haakon’s Suite” at the Palace.
The “King Haakon’s Suite”, is the finest guest room in the Palace. This suite is used only during state visits or the visit of important royal guests. The suite consists of a lounge, two bedrooms and a bathroom. The suite’s lounge is decorated with portraits of the Bernadotte family, which was the reigning House of Norway from 1818 until 1905. The large bedroom of the suite has also hosted Queen Elizabeth II all the times she has visited Norway.
The Norwegian authorities have shown great enthusiasm for the British visit. During a press conference last week, representatives from the Royal Norwegian Department for Foreign Affairs said they felt the visit highlighted the strong ties Norway and the United Kingdom have and will help to build the excellent relationship that the two kingdoms will have in the future.
The Norwegian and British families are closely related. Norway’s first Queen, after the union resolution with Sweden in 1905, Queen Maud, was the daughter of King Edward VII of the United Kingdom. King Harald of Norway and Queen Elizabeth are second cousins.