Prince Christian (18) stepped onto the balcony of Amalienborg Palace with his family on Sunday at 12 p.m. According to the newspaper Politics, he appeared smiling and waving to the people. Thousands of people are said to have cheered him on. The palace published a short excerpt of the appearance on Instagram. The official celebrations for Prince Christian’s 18th birthday began on this date.

The 18th birthday balcony appearance is a tradition in Denmark: The court had previously published a video with archive footage that shows Christian’s father, Crown Prince Frederik (55), at the same event in 1986, as well as today’s Queen Margrethe II of Denmark ( 83) in 1958. The two then 18-year-olds also completed the traditional event with a friendly wave.

In addition to Prince Christian, the prince’s parents, Frederik and Crown Princess Mary (51), as well as his three siblings, Princess Isabella (16), Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine (both 12), and the monarch. According to the report, those present sang a birthday serenade for Prince Christian. Queen Margrethe also awarded the prince the Order of the Elephant, the highest and oldest Danish knightly order.

The Prince’s official celebration continues on Sunday afternoon: Then, among other things, the Queen will host a gala dinner at Christiansborg Palace for her grandson. According to Politics, 200 18-year-olds from the country’s municipalities have been invited to celebrate with the future king of Denmark. In addition, around 110 other guests from sports, art and culture are taking part, it is said.

There was also a message from Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen (45) for Prince Christian: “On behalf of all of Denmark, happy birthday,” she wrote on Instagram.

The day before the celebrations, the palace had published an entire photo album on Instagram containing numerous pictures from his childhood as well as more recent photos of the prince. “From child to adult,” says the attached comment. His parents took the pictures in recent years. You can see, among other things, baby photos, photos from the summer of 2012 and while traveling with the family. In one of the photos he is pictured at a very young age with his grandmother, Queen Margrethe II.