Despite its massive size, the Koninklijk Paleis (Royal Palace) standing in Dam Square is easy to miss, especially with the number of street artists that have begun popping up in front of it. But this is a building well worth ensuring is on your to-do list.
Built between 1648 and 1655 as a city hall (the largest in Europe at the time), the building did not become a Royal Palace until 1808 when Napoleon gave his brother Louis the title, King of Holland. Nowadays the palace is used for official functions, the balcony in the front seeing the most action during royal marriages and abdication/investiture of the monarch.
It took 13,659 wooden piles driven into the sandy soil to support the building, so remember that when you walk through its magnificent Burgerzaal (Citizen’s Hall) complete with a marble floor and 95-foot high ceiling.
There is so much to see during a visit that you may wish to also take advantage of the extensive website and virtual tour. The Palace is closed to visitors during off-peak season and during planned events, so do check the website for any closures before striding up to the doors.