Prince William and Princess Kate on a 10-day tour of AustraliaApril 17, 2014
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have arrived in Australia.
Prince William, the second in line to the British throne, had holidayed many times, but Down Under may turned out to be special, as this was the first time he brought along Prince George of Cambridge, his first child by Catherine Middleton. Prior to this, the young family made a stop in New Zealand, where Prince George, barely a year old, found new mates in that part of the world. It was dark and raining, but these didn't spoiled their trip. In fact, many followed the royal couple, while looking at vintage planes at the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre. They even have fun in Dunedin, playing a tag rugby match.
The New Zealand Herald editorial credited the couple for revitalising the monarchy.
"Thanks to William and Catherine, that idea is fading. Like Diana, they are making the monarchy less stuffy, more contemporary, and even Prince Charles appears to be more relaxed. With three generations of heirs to the throne, the monarchy looks settled for another century," said the paper.
It was a sunny morning when the Royal plane arrived in Sydney. The duchess wore a stunning yellow dress, greeting Tony Abbott, the Prime Minister of Australia, Margaret Aitken, his wife, and other officials.
The couple's first stop was the Sydney Opera House, where the prince made a speech inside.
"There cannot be a more impressive place than the iconic Sydney Opera House to begin our first visit together to Australia. I know that New South Wales is a very special place, and Catherine and I are looking forward to seeing that for ourselves over the coming days," he said.
The duke also made reference to a recent earthquake that struck near the Solomon Islands, a magnitude 7.6 quake that triggered a tsunami warning.
"You have also responded with great generosity in the past few days to the natural disaster afflicting the Solomon Islands, which is suffering dreadfully from floods and successive earthquakes. Australia has led the international response in a way that is testament to the strength of your partnerships with your neighbours, and the important role that Australia plays both regionally and globally," the prince's speech continued.
Later that day, Prince George got a treat, a cuddly toy given to him by Peter Cosgrove, Governor-General of Australia.
The Royal Couple's itinerary include a trip to the Blue Mountains, a stunning plateau carved in sandstone bedrock, bordering in Sydney's metropolitan area, Brisbane, the capital of Queensland, Uluru, a huge sandstone rock formation not far from Alice Springs, home to rock caves and ancient paintings, Adelaide, the capital of South Australia, and Canberra, the nation's capital. Some are wondering why Melbourne, the capital of Victoria and the second most populous city in Australia, isn't included. Perhaps there isn't much time to visit places like the Philip Island Nature Park, where visitors can see penguins in their own environment. Another thing is the couple may have pressing duties in the next few weeks.
There'll be a next time, when Prince George is old enough to enjoy sightseeing.
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