Sweden's Queen Says Her Castle Is Haunted

Photo: Hercules Mila /Alamy.
Drottningholm Palace may not be the most famous royal residence in the world, but it certainly is storied. Not only is the palace, which sits in a suburb of Stockholm and serves as a private residence for the Swedish royal family, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it also plays host to one of the most famed opera festivals in the world. But it's not architecture or history that's put the castle in the spotlight: The Local reports that Sweden's Queen Silvia insists the castle and its grounds are haunted.

"There’s a lot of history here. There are also little friends…the ghosts," the queen said in a documentary that aired on Thursday. "They’re all very friendly, but you sometimes feel like you aren’t alone."

Queen Silvia and King Carl XVI Gustaf live at the palace, which was built 350 years ago in 1662. Here's where things get spooky: the current Drottningholm Palace was built over a 16th-century castle that burned down in 1661. Fire, history, and royals? It's the perfect formula for a haunting. Sightings include a "gray man" and a "white lady" wandering the castle's halls and manicured gardens. It'll take more than a few apparitions to spook Queen Silvia, however. Being Sweden's longest reigning queen has given her a thick skin in more ways than one. She's not scared of the ghosts, which she describes as friendly.

"You don’t get scared, it’s as friendly as there is. Imagine what they could tell?” the 73-year-old said in the documentary.

Curious to start a royal ghost hunt? Thankfully, you can head to Lovön Island and explore the estate yourself. Like many royal residences, much of Drottningholm Palace is open to the public, though its official website doesn't clearly state whether or not ghost-hunting equipment is forbidden.

The queen isn't the only one to attest to these friendly haunts. “There is much energy in this house. It would be strange if it didn’t take the form of guises,” Princess Christina, the king’s sister said. “There’s stories about ghosts in all old houses. They have been filled with people over the centuries. The energies remain.”
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