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Royals kick off National Day celebrations

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11:34 CEST+02:00
Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madeleine threw open the doors to the Royal Palace's courtyard at 10am on the dot on Wednesday, welcoming the general public inside to celebrate Sweden's National Day.

There were many tourists waiting in the hot summer weather and the sun blazed across a cloudless sky.

The princess was dressed in a white dress and high heels while her brother sported a dark suit and a black and white striped tie.

At 8am the Rågsved scout troop had raised the flags at the palace and the opening ceremony was conducted to the rythm of the army's drum corps.

"I think that this day is worth celebrating because Sweden has had peace and democracy for such a long time, said head of the Royal Court, Ingemar Eliasson.

Don Sheetz from California found himself stopping off in Sweden on a cruise and was one of the tourists at the palace. He said that he had not experienced anything similar in the US and hoped for a glimpse of the Swedish royals.

During the day there are several demonstrations and processions planned as part of the National Day celebrations. In Stockholm the Sweden Parade will celebrate "the new Sweden". Early on Wednesday evening the traditional celebration will be held at Skansen in the presence of the king and queen.

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