Palaces, manors and town halls in Sweden

Charlottenlund Castle

Charlottenlund castle (or manor) lies in the countryside about eight kilometres west of Ystad. The present stately home was built in 1849 and is influenced by the medieval Romanesque style. It is surrounded by beautiful landscaped gardens. It possesses an excellent collection of art from the Nordic world. There is also a fine library. Guided tours are offered to groups by arrangement.
Founded: 1849 | Location: Ystad, Sweden

Stora Herrestad

The guest house in Stora Herrestad is one of the oldest in Scania, and dates back to the 1600s. The old stable, which now serves as our banquet room, was used by travellers on their long journeys and the old main building, where the restaurant is now located, was the courthouse. In the 1780s the old main building was destroyed by fire, but was then rebuilt as an inn during the 1800s. The courthouse was relocated across t ...
Founded: 17th century | Location: Ystad, Sweden

Esplunda Manor

Esplunda estate was established in 1616. The current manor house was built in 1872 and it was enlarged to the Baroque-style appearance in 1904. Wings date from the 18th century. Esplunda has a very significant library with 15,000 books and manuscripts dating from the 1600-1700s.
Founded: 17th century | Location: Örebro, Sweden

Trystorp Manor

Trystorp is a Swedish estate in Lekeberg. To the south of the manor, there is a nature reserve which is open to the public, with a rich fauna and many old oaks. The estate was established by Biskop Kort Rogge in 1495, who bought land in the area. The Livonian nobleman Henrik von Falkenberg was subsequently awarded Trystorp as a fief. In the 16th century, King Charles IX of Sweden was a frequent guest at Trystorp. The Fa ...
Founded: 1495 | Location: Fjugesta, Sweden

Adelsnäs Manor

Adelsnäs (formerly known as Näs) manor was named after Johan Adelswärd, who acquired the local copper mine in 1781. The present manor building was built Theodor Adelswärd in 1916-1920. English garden and parks around the Bysjön lake are popular when open to the public. The unique detail is a “Sun Cannon”, which is installed in a red brick tower from 1853. It is a 6-pound cannon from t ...
Founded: 1916-1920 | Location: Åtvidaberg, Sweden

Östrabo Bishop’s House

Östrabo biskopsgård (Bishop’s House) consists of main building (built 1792-1796) and four annexes. It was built by bishop Olof Wallquist.
Founded: 1792-1796 | Location: Växjö, Sweden

Hanaskog Castle

Hanaskog estate was first mentioned in 1308. It has been owned among others by Walkendorff, Citzwitz and Rosentvist families. The current two-storey castle was built in 1852-1854 by Carl Axel Wachtmeister. He sold Hanaskog to famous De Geer familyin 1891 and it is still owned by Baron Willem De Geer.
Founded: 1852-1854 | Location: Hanaskog, Sweden

Jordberga Castle

Jordberga estate was first mentionedin 1355. The original castle was destroyed by fire in 1644 and rebuilt. The current Baroque-style exterior dates from 1906-1908, when the castle was rebuilt according the design of Danish architect Heneri Glaesel. The park is an English-style garden and dates from the mid-19th century. Today castle is owned by Otto von Arnold, member of the Swedish Riksdag.
Founded: 1905-1908 | Location: Klagstorp, Sweden

Össjö Castle

The current main building of Össjö Castle was built in 1814 after the previous was destroyed by fire. The two wings, dating from 1766 and 1770s survived from the fire. The Össjö history dates from the 16th century, when it belonged to the powerful Danish Krabbe family. Today it is privately owned and not open to the public.
Founded: 1814 | Location: Ängelholm, Sweden

Ovesholm Castle

The first known owner of Ovesholm estate was Åke Holm in 1580. In 1620 Ove Urup built an earlier main building near to the current site. In 1774 it was donated to Henning Reinhold Wrangel and his son Carl Adam Wrangel af Adinal built the present castle between 1792-1804. Carl Adam also created a notable library and collection of art and sculptures to Ovesholm. The latest enlargement was made by Axel Hugo Raoul Hamil ...
Founded: 1792-1804 | Location: Kristianstad, Sweden

Rönneholm Castle

Rönneholm Castle history dates from the Middle Ages. The current castle was built c. 1811 and the third storey was added in 1882. The fire damaged castle badly in 1941. Today it is a conference center.
Founded: 1800 | Location: Stehag, Sweden

Rosendal Palace

Rosendal Palace was built 1615 by Privy Council Anders Bille. The Bennet family has owned the palace for centuries. The castle consists of main building and wings with towers in corners.
Founded: 1615 | Location: Helsingborg, Sweden

Gripenberg Castle

Gripenberg Castle (Gripenbergs slott) is a wooden manor house. It is considered to be the biggest wooden castle in Sweden and one of the oldest that remain today as well. The castle was built in 1663 as a huntig seat for the field marshal Carl Gustaf Wrangel. Its architect is unknown, but there is some reason to believe, that it might have been Nicodemus Tessin the Elder. It is assumed that the castle"s name is deri ...
Founded: 1663 | Location: Tranås, Sweden

Boo Castle

Boo fideikommiss (estate in tail) was founded in 1735. The first owner was one of the generals of the Swedish king Charles XII, baron H. J. Hamilton. After imprisonment in Russia he took up residence at Boo. Thereafter the estate has been inherited within the family Hamilton af Hageby. The current Boo Castle was built to the grounds of older manor house in 1874-1882. The Neo-Gothic building was designed by Johan Fredrik & ...
Founded: 1874-1882 | Location: Hallsberg, Sweden

Ulvåsa Manor

Ulvåsa, or Ulfåsa, is an mansion by lake Boren outside Motala in Östergötland, Sweden. The construction of the present mansion began in the 16th century. In the early 19th century a third floor was added and it got its present architecture. The medieval Ulvåsa was situated a few kilometers west of the present mansion. Today, there are ruins left of the manor where SaintBridget of Sweden lived ...
Founded: 1740 | Location: Motala, Sweden

Västanå Manor

The history of Våstana estate dates from the 1590s and the current main building was mainly reconstructed in 1767. Since 1948 it has been a hotel and restautant.
Founded: 1767 | Location: Gränna, Sweden

Torsåker Manor

Torsåker manor is one of the finest palaces in Uppland. The current main castle-like main building was built in the 1870s and restored in 1902.
Founded: 1870s | Location: Torsåker, Sweden

Stola Manor

The Ekeblad family owned Stola estate from the 1530"s untill 1879. Several members of the family was noted commanders, royal councillors and country govenors. The building was unoccupied for a greater part of ofthe 19th century, but it has been renovated since and returned to it"s 18th century splendours. Since the end of 1980"s Stola has been owned by a foundation, and part of the groundfloor is used as pr ...
Founded: 19th century | Location: Lidköping, Sweden

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Porta Nigra

The Porta Nigra (Latin for black gate) is the largest Roman city gate north of the Alps. It is designated as part of the Roman Monuments, Cathedral of St. Peter and Church of Our Lady in Trier UNESCO World Heritage Site. The name Porta Nigra originated in the Middle Ages due to the darkened colour of its stone; the original Roman name has not been preserved. Locals commonly refer to the Porta Nigra simply as Porta.

The Porta Nigra was built in grey sandstone between 186 and 200 AD. The original gate consisted of two four-storied towers, projecting as near semicircles on the outer side. A narrow courtyard separated the two gate openings on either side. For unknown reasons, however, the construction of the gate remained unfinished. For example, the stones at the northern (outer) side of the gate were never abraded, and the protruding stones would have made it impossible to install movable gates. Nonetheless, the gate was used for several centuries until the end of the Roman era in Trier.

In Roman times, the Porta Nigra was part of a system of four city gates, one of which stood at each side of the roughly rectangular Roman city. The Porta Nigra guarded the northern entry to the Roman city, while the Porta Alba (White Gate) was built in the east, the Porta Media (Middle Gate) in the south, and the Porta Inclyta (Famous Gate) in the west, next to the Roman bridge across the Moselle. The gates stood at the ends of the two main streets of the Roman Trier, one of which led north-south and the other east-west. Of these gates, only the Porta Nigra still exists today.

In the early Middle Ages the Roman city gates were no longer used for their original function and their stones were taken and reused for other buildings. Also iron and lead braces were broken out of the walls of the Porta Nigra for reuse. Traces of this destruction are still clearly visible on the north side of the gate.

After 1028, the Greek monk Simeon lived as a hermit in the ruins of the Porta Nigra. After his death (1035) and sanctification, the Simeonstift monastery was built next to the Porta Nigra to honor him. Saving it from further destruction, the Porta Nigra was transformed into a church: The inner court of the gate was roofed and intermediate ceilings were inserted. The two middle storeys of the former gate were converted into church naves: the upper storey being for the monks and the lower storey for the general public. The ground floor with the large gates was sealed, and a large outside staircase was constructed alongside the south side (the town side) of the gate, up to the lower storey of the church. A small staircase led further up to the upper storey. The church rooms were accessible through former windows of the western tower of the Porta Nigra that were enlarged to become entrance doors (still visible today). The top floor of the western tower was used as church tower, the eastern tower was leveled, and an apse added at its east side. An additional gate - the much smaller Simeon Gate - was built adjacent to the East side of the Porta Nigra and served as a city gate in medieval times.

In 1802 Napoleon Bonaparte dissolved the church in the Porta Nigra and the monastery beside it, along with the vast majority of Trier"s numerous churches and monasteries. On his visit to Trier in 1804, Napoleon ordered that the Porta Nigra be converted back to its Roman form. Only the apse was kept; but the eastern tower was not rebuilt to its original height. Local legend has it that Napoleon originally wanted to completely tear down the church, but locals convinced him that the church had actually been a Gaulish festival hall before being turned into a church. Another version of the story is that they told him about its Roman origins, persuading him to convert the gate back to its original form.

In 1986 the Porta Nigra was designated a World Heritage Site, along with other Roman monuments in Trier and its surroundings. The modern appearance of the Porta Nigra goes back almost unchanged to the reconstruction ordered by Napoleon. At the south side of the Porta Nigra, remains of Roman columns line the last 100 m of the street leading to the gate. Positioned where they had stood in Roman times, they give a slight impression of the aspect of the original Roman street that was lined with colonnades. The Porta Nigra, including the upper floors, is open to visitors.