A few weeks ago I visited the Grace Kelly exhibition in Royal Palace Het Loo in Apeldoorn. It was my first visit ever to the palace and to Apeldoorn, and I can assure you that it wasn’t my last. I just loved the region! The palace is situated in Apeldoorn, a city in the east of the Netherlands right amidst the national park the Veluwe. Few cities in the Netherlands offer as much peace and quiet as Apeldoorn. Extensive woodlands and city parks dominate the region and city and are the backdrop of many monumental buildings. A visit to Palace Het Loo is a journey through 3 centuries of the Dutch Royal family. The palace was built in 1686 and used by the royals as a summer retreat. I spent a whole day in the stunning gardens, walked the trail on the palace grounds, and visited inside the palace. It was one of the highlights of this year for me as I enjoyed the vegetation, flowers, nature, peace and tranquility, and beautiful architecture. Today, in part 1 I will share my photos of the palace gardens. Tomorrow in part 2 I will show you the trail of the palace grounds and inside the palace.
King William III and his wife Mary Stuart had the palace and gardens built to gain more authority and regard. Therefore the palace gardens were also accessible to visitors and still are. Their aim was to impress guests, something they succeeded in and still do. The stunning views, impressive statues, blooming flowers and the sound of the fountains make the gardens to a peaceful escape. Back in the days the gardens were used to flaunt, and to host theater performances, concerts and firework shows.
The baroque gardens and palace of the French king inspired the design of the gardens at Palace ‘t Loo, however, because of the Dutch vegetation it got its own signature nevertheless. Typical for a 17th century garden are the symmetrical beds with singular plants, flowers and green hedges.
The garden downstairs consists of eight parts that are filled in like French embroidery. Along the borders there are lush exotic plants. Statues of Greek and Roman gods and godesses embellish the garden. In the middle is a globe with all the significant places where king William III had trading partners.
The “upper” garden with its white colonnades, almost feels tropical. Lush palm plants and an orangery make you feel like you are in Spain. From the top of the collonades you have a beautiful extended view of the property.
Isn’t it beautiful? Stay tuned for part 2!