Built by margrave Karl Wilhelm in 1715 in the middle of a forest this palace was the starting point of the city of Karlsruhe. First it was meant as a manor for rest and relaxation for the margrave but later it became his residence and the political centre of the state of Baden. All streets of the early Karlsruhe radiated from the palace into all directions like sunbeams and the tower of the palace was in the centre. It is supposed that it was used as a sundial, because the spire casts its shadow every full hour onto another path.
Nowadays the palace is home of the Badische Landesmuseum which exhibits collections about local history, greek and roman art, the treasure chamber of the margraves of Baden and temporary exhibitions.
The square in front of the palace has been remodeled and only recently, in late summer 2011, been completed. Instead of the lower parterre a few steps down, ewverything is at the same level now, the stairs are gone. The central axis is straight, the fountain in the middle is gone, too. The lawns on both sides are now interrupted by parallel stripes of water in stone basins. Along the path in the middle, flower beds have been planted with colourful summer flowers. The big statue of Grandduke Karl Friedrich is now surrounded by a square water basin. The statues have been restored and painted whiter than white.
I am not yet sure what I think about the new design. I must get used to it first. But no matter what - it offers a lot of new photo options with the reflections in the water.
However, I wonder if the planners have considered one problem - the shallow, lukewarm standing water in the dark stone basins will make a perfect breeding farm for mosquitoes next spring and summer...