Oslo has been the capital since 1814, when Norway gained its independence from Denmark. The city is one of Europe's fastest-growing capitals, with annual population increases exceeding 2 per cent in recent years.
The capital is the seat of Regjeringen (the Norwegian Government) and Stortinget (the Norwegian Parliament). The home of Norway's King Harald V and Queen Sonja, The Royal Palace, is located at the end of Oslo's main street, Karl Johans gate.
Many of Norway’s main businesses and educational institutions are based in Oslo, which is also home to important cultural institutions such as the National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, the Norwegian Opera and Ballet and the National Theatre.