Formerly the residence of kings and queens, some palaces were not built to house royal families but in particular to project power and prestige. Thus, monarchs and emperors battled among themselves, commanding sumptuous summer residences. Discover the 7 most beautiful palaces in the world.
7. Chateau de Chambord, France
Located in the Loire Valley, the Château de Chambord is undoubtedly among the pinnacles of Renaissance architecture in France. Commissioned by François the First to be a hunting lodge, its truly well-crafted and enchanting design proudly displays the value of wealth and the legendary power of the monarch.
Although most of its extravagant furnishings were stripped and removed after the French Revolution, visitors may enjoy wandering through its elegant corridors, halls and chambers.
Overall, the towers and turrets of the castle provide visitors with a spectacular view, especially when contrasted with the reflecting moat that surrounds it.
6. Palace of Winds (Hawa Mahal), India
Very well known for its elaborate and ornate facade, Hawa Mahal translates nicely into French as “the palace of the winds”. Completed in the year 1799, its attractive arches, pretty pillars and dignified domes are mostly crafted from extraordinary red and pink sandstone.
While the palace has a courtyard to explore and beautiful buildings, as well as an incredible archaeological museum, it is also its honeycomb-built exterior that most attracts the attention of visitors.
The palace has 5 floors with beautiful bays with their colored glass windows and especially their intricate lattices which make the beauty of this palace.
5. Topkapi Palace, Istanbul
The palace is located in a beautiful corner on the banks of the Bosphorus, it was from Topkapi Palace that the sultans ruled over the entire Ottoman Empire. Built in the year 1459 under the command of the conqueror Mehmet, the palace has several ornate and ostentatious rooms, displaying magnificent works of Islamic art and architecture.
In addition to its breathtaking halls, corridors and courtyards, there are also the luminous jewels of the Imperial Treasury that all visitors can discover. Today a magnificent museum, Topkapi Palace is one of the palaces among the 7 most beautiful palaces in the world.
4. Palace of Versailles, France
Although Versailles had previously started as a simple hunting lodge, it became among the largest palaces ever seen during the era of Louis XIV. The Sun King enlarged and embellished it before making it his royal residence and secondarily the seat of his government.
It is that on many of the most precious treasures and its works of art from the palace were removed and placed in the Louvre after the French Revolution, there were extensive restorations and renovations which allowed the palace to regain its ancient glory.
Now one of France’s most popular tourist attractions, every year millions of people from around the world come to see its admirable royal apartments. As well as the sparkling Royal Opera and Hall of Mirrors.
Due to all the events of global magnitude that have taken place in its mythical rooms, the Palace of Versailles is among the most important historical, architectural and cultural treasures of the French nation.
3. Alhambra, Spain
Perched atop a plateau overlooking Granada, the Alhambra has been among the most famous and identifiable palaces in the world since time immemorial. A palace built by the Nasrid sultans in the 13th century, this grand complex nobly showcases several absolutely exquisite Andalusian architectures, with designs on the walls and unique motifs everywhere you look.
Strolling through the courtyard in its magnificent gardens, colonnaded courtyards and sturdy fortifications is a real delight not to be missed.
Among several highlights of the palace are the lovely pavilions of the Court of the Lions, the beautifully carved columns, and the well-kept flowers and fountains of the Generalife. With verdant trees towering around the beige walls and the majestic Sierra Nevada mountains in the background, the Alhambra is certainly a memorable sight.
2. Winter Palace, Russia
Once a residence of the Russian tsars, the Winter Palace now houses the famous Hermitage Museum. Built in the form of Elizabethan Baroque, its outwardly endless green and white walls are said to house approximately more than 1,500 rooms, each of which is simply designed and decorated. The size and scale of this palace, not to mention the architecture on display and the beauty of the art, absolutely showcase the power of Imperial Russia.
The empire and the monarchy, however, crumbled in 1917, when the Winter Palace was taken on the offensive in one of the decisive incidents of the Russian Revolution. Nowadays, the museum and the palace are one of the highlights of any visit to Saint Petersburg.
1. Forbidden City, China
Built in 1406, the Forbidden City dominated and determined the center of Beijing, as well as all of China itself. Once the imperial home of the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties, it was in this palace that they ruled over their vast empire.
The city is located on an area enormously protected by wide moats and a high wall, the palace complex includes some 980 buildings.
Since the abandonment of the last emperor in 1925, the Forbidden City has been run by the Palace Museum, which has a surprising collection of works of art. It is the perfect illustration of more than two millennia of Chinese art and architecture, the Forbidden City is among the 7 most beautiful palaces in the world.
Besides the lovely architecture and works of art, the old royal residences also have beautiful gardens, with abundant fountains and flowerbeds. Due to their high artistic, historical and cultural value, these beautiful palaces now form some of the most widespread tourist attractions and museums in the surrounding area.