6 Essential Details About the Norwegian Royal Family You Probably Didn’t Know
We know just about everything about Prince William and Kate Middleton, from their hobbies to their self-isolation locations. However, they’re not the only royal clan who has been making headlines as of late.
Join us as we take a look at the Norwegian royal family, including details on where they live and who currently represents the monarchy.
1. Who currently represents the Norwegian royal family?
The current heads of the family are King Harald and his wife, Queen Sonja. Similar to the U.K., Norway is considered a “constitutional monarchy.” While there is one person (i.e., a king) who acts as the head of state, the duties are mainly ceremonial. The majority of the power lies within parliament, which includes the country’s elected bodies.
2. Who is King Harald?
He ascended the throne in 1991 after the death of his father, King Olav V. As the third child and only son of the monarch, Harald was born into the role of Crown Prince. However, he wasn’t always tied to his royal duties. In fact, the royal represented Norway in sailing at the 1964, 1968 and 1972 Olympic Games. (NBD)
3. Who is Queen Sonja?
She was born in Oslo to parents Karl August Haraldsen and Dagny Ulrichsen. During her studies, she obtained degrees in multiple subjects, including fashion design, French and art history.
Queen Sonja dated King Harald for nine years before tying the knot in 1968. Prior to the marriage, their relationship wasn’t widely accepted by the royal family due to the simple fact that she was a commoner.
4. Do they have any children?
King Harald and Queen Sonja have two children: Crown Prince Haakon (47) and Princess Märtha Louise (49). Although Princess Märtha is older, Prince Haakon is first in line to the Norwegian throne.
5. What is the royal house vs. the royal family?
In Norway, there’s a difference between the royal house and the royal family. While the latter refers to every blood relative, the royal house is far more exclusive. Currently, it includes King Harald, Queen Sonja and the heir apparent: Prince Haakon. Haakon’s wife, Princess Mette-Marit, and his first-born child, Princess Ingrid Alexandra, are also considered members.
6. Where do they live?
The Norwegian royal family currently resides at The Royal Palace in Oslo. The residence was originally built in the early 19th century for King Charles III John. As of today, it consists of 173 different rooms (including its own chapel).