Luxembourg has no shortage of atmospheric castles but few can rival the grandeur and beauty of Luxembourg City’s Grand Ducal Palace.

Located in the City centre next to Place Guillaume II, for a short time only curious visitors can go behind the scenes to see what it is like to live in a palace, to admire the artwork and stroll the sweeping corridors.

In its function as the city residence of the Grand Ducal family, it is situated right in the core of the Old Town.

Dating back to the 16th Century, the palace is the official residence of Grand Duke Henri and has played a large part in the official duties of the head of state. Formerly the capital’s first town hall until it was destroyed by a gunpowder explosion in 1554, the structure was rebuilt 20 years later.

During the 18th Century an extension was added and the Parliament was built as an annex in 1859. It remained thus until 1890 when the building became the Palace of the Grand Dukes.

Restored from 1992 to 1995, the palace boasts an exquisite Flemish Renaissance facade. The grand interior and ceremonial rooms have to be seen to be believed. Currently, the palace is hosting a stamp exhibition entitled “La Dynastie à travers les timbres”, which is covered in daily tours open to visitors.

Today it hosts state visits while the Grand Ducal family reside at their home in Berg Castle, Colmar-Berg.

Guided tours are given daily from July 15 until September 7 except Wednesdays, taking visitors through the official reception rooms among other places.

Guided tours in English will be given every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 10am, 3.30pm and 5pm (closed Wednesdays).

Tickets cost 10 euros for adults and 5 euros for children. All proceeds go to the “Fondation Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria-Teresa.”

Tickets can be bought from the Luxembourg City Tourist Office only. The office is located in Place Guillaume II, tel 47 96 27 09 or visit http://www.lcto.lu or email touristinfo@lcto.lu