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SURROUNDINGS 11 km (7 miles) Wof the middle of the city (45 minutes by boat), on the island of Lovo, stands Drottningholm Palace, now the residence of the royal family. The palace, based on French and Dutch models, was built for Queen Eleonora in 1662 by Nicodemus Tessin the Elder. It contains pictures by David Kloker Ehrenstrahl and Johan Philip

Lempke and sculpture by Nicolaes Millich and Burchardt Precht. In the beautiful park, laid out with terraces and avenues of lime-trees, are bronze sculptures brought from Denmark and Bohemia as

Drottningholm Palace war trophies. In 1744, Queen Luise Ulrike, a sister of Frederick the Great, Travel service Scandinavia norge was given Drottningholm as a wedding present, and new wings were added by Carl HSrleman and Carl Fredrik Adelcrantz, with rooms decorated in French Rococo style; one of the finest of these is the Library. Adelcrantz was also responsible for the Theatre (added in 1766), now frequently used for performances, with stage machinery from the time of Gustav III; 18th c. scenery and costumes are displayed in the theatre museum. The Chinese Pavilion (1766) in the park was also built for Queen Luise Ulrike as a summer residence; the interior is a mingling of French Rococo and Chinese elements. Nearby is the little settlement of Canton (1 750-60), built to house the craftsmen making furniture and carpets for the Chinese Pavilion.

28 km (1 8 miles) W of Stockholm, in Lake Malar, lies the little island of Bjorko (Birch Island). During the Viking period Bjorko was a trading station with a population in the 10th c. of several thousand merchants, craftsmen, peasants and slaves. Here, too, about 830, St Ansgar preached the Gospel. Excavation has revealed much about the life of the period (remains of houses, implements and domestic equipment, hearths, etc.). Outside the area of the settlement is a cemetery with about 2500 graves, the largest in Sweden. Bjorko’s extensive trading connections were indicated by finds of silver coins from Arabia, silk from China, pottery from Friesland and glass from France. The whole site is now protected as a national monument. Nearby is St Ansgar’s Chapel, consecrated in 1 930. During the summer there are regular boat services from Stockholm and Sodertalje to Bjorko.

Sodertalje (pop. 60,000; Esso Motor Hotel, 259 Stradshotellet, 132 b.), now an industrial town, developed from a Viking trading station set between Lake Malar and the Baltic. Originally named simply Talje, it became Sodertalje when the adjoining settlement of Norrtalje was established. The industrial development of the town was fostered by the construction of the Sodertalje Canal in 1 807-1 9 and he building of the Stockholm-Gothenburg railway line, which passed through the town. In Stortorget are St Ragnhid’s Church (13th c. much altered, but with some remains ofthe original structure), the Town Hall (1965) and other modern buildings. The old Town Hall was moved to a site on the Canal. On the Torrekallberg is an open-air museum (Ostra Sorm-lands Museet), with old houses and workshops (reconstructed). Among the group of town houses is the Strdmstedt House, with a collection of historical material. There is also a working bakery which produces a local speciality, Sodertalje kringlor. 2 km (1Jr miles) S of the town is a beach, Sodertalje Ha vs bad.

An attractive excursion from Stockholm is a boat trip on Lake Malar (about 3 hours) to Mariefred (pop. 2600; Gripsholms Vardshus, 11 b.), an idyllic little town in a lush setting. Mariefred owes its origin and name to the Carthusian monastery of Pax Mariae, founded in 1493, which ceased to exist at the beginning ofthe Reformation. The town is dominated by the church (17th c.) on the hill. Below this, in the older part of the little town, wooden houses line narrow lanes, most of which run down to the lake. To the N of the church, in the market square, is the Town Hall (1784), also built of wood (tourist information office). On the S side of the hill, below the church, is a local museum. To the W, on the far side of Stallarholmsvagen, are the ruins of Karnbo church. W ofthe middle of town lies an attractive villa suburb.

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