No one was able to correctly guess where Gumbo was this week, although we had some very insightful comments by DrFumblefinger and PurpleDinner Greg. As guessed, the photos were of a castle/fortress and were taken in early June in Northern Europe.
My guess is the photos of Akershus looked familiar to many of you. When we visited, so much of the castle seemed like we'd seen it before, even though it was our first time there. There are good reasons that it looks so familiar, too. A portion of the place was replicated at Disney's Epcot theme park in Florida at the Norway pavilion and Akershus was the model for Elsa and Anna’s castle in the movie Frozen.
Akershus Castle dates from the late 1200's. It was a medieval castle and royal residence that was developed into a fortress in 1592. In 1637 through 1648, the fortress was rebuilt into a Renaissance castle. It has also served as a prison, where prisoners were rented out for use in the city. The fortress was never captured in active battle. During World War II, though, occupying German forces took over the fortress without a fight and used it as a prison and execution center.
The fortress houses the Norwegian Armed Forces Museum and Norway's Resistance Museum. And it houses a historic church, which is also the home of the Royal Sarcophagi, where many of Norway's Royals are buried.
Part of Akershus Fortress is still used as Norwegian Military Headquarters. And the government uses the castle for dinners and receptions for heads of state and other dignitaries.
We really enjoyed our brief trip to Akershus. The architecture and views are amazing and we loved the stained glass. What I found especially interesting is how Oslo blends the old and the new. Just outside the fortress, in the parking area, there's even electric charging stations for cars and the parking area itself was full of Teslas.