Like thousands of tourists before me, I made my way to Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen, Denmark. But rather than join the queues waiting to visit the Parliament and Supreme Court, I decided to stroll around the exterior. At the rear of the palace, an electrified fence surrounded a pasture where two enormous white Kladruber horses stood.
The one nearest me rolled his big black eye, scoping me out. “Beauty,” I said quietly. Curious, he trotted over to get a better look. I began to talk to him. He shook his mane and sprinted away, but was soon back. We played tag for 20-minutes. With each approach he came just a bit closer, but he always skittered away whenever I looked at him directly. I was completely mesmerized.
I had discovered the Royal Stables, home to the famous Kladruber horses. The lineage is more than 450 years old, making it one of the oldest and rarest of all breeds. Kladrubers originated in the Czech Republic. With their high-stepping gait and musculature, they were bred specifically to pull carriages. In 1994, the Royal Family acquired six young Kladrubers to pull the Queen’s carriage.
Just as I was about to leave, two handlers walked into the pasture, placed bridles on the horses, and led them right past me into the stables. I broke out in goosebumps as they passed, and I swear that curious horse looked directly at me and bowed his head as he passed.
The Royal Stables at Christiansborg Palace are open every day from 1:30 to 4 p.m. (in July 10 am to 5 pm). But if you’re lucky like me, you can see them out in the pasture.
Author’s note: I was a guest of Collette during my Spectacular Scandinavia tour. However, the receipt and acceptance of complimentary items or services will never influence the content, topics, or posts in this blog. I write the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.