With the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge currently fulfilling their royal duties overseas, we thought we'd take a look back at their previous public outings abroad. Since their marriage in April 2011, William and Kate - or rather, Catherine, as we now call her - have been tasked with representing the Queen overseas in the Commonwealth nations. The Commonwealth is a voluntary collection of nations around the world, many of which have historic ties to the British Empire. The Queen is the head of the Commonwealth but with her advanced age she has passed her Commonwealth duties to other members of the Royal family. And who better to carry out these engagements than everyone’s favourite royals, William and Kate!
These visits are a chance for Commonwealth nations to connect with their ties to the monarchy, be recognised on a global stage and associate with the glitz and glamour of the young royals. For their part, the Duke and Duchess are expected to visit notable sites of interest in the community, from charity endeavours to places of historical significance and to partake in the culture of their host nation. From indigenous customs to black tie balls, William and Kate are ready for any occasion, as are a gang of photographers, eager to catch their every move.
Currently the Duke and Duchess are in New Zealand where they've been sampling the local wine, sailing and showing off their adorable son Prince George. While William may be now well used to royal engagements, for Catherine they're still a new phenomenon. But, as she will one day be the wife of the King, it’s time she got some practice in. Kate and Wills are fulfilling the duties of their roles on a regular basis in the UK, but it's representing the Queen on extended visits overseas when we really see the couple come into their own. In tribute to the couple of the moment, we're reviewing their 5 most spectacular overseas visits to date. Expect immaculate outfits, unending photo calls and even - dare we say it - a bad hair day!
5 5. United States: 2011
4 Canada: 2011
William and Kate’s trip to California may have received plenty of press attention, but it was Canada that was the real focus of their North American tour. As this was their first official tour as a married couple, this was the first official trip Kate - or rather Her Royal Highness Catherine the Duchess of Cambridge, as she became after her marriage - made as a royal. As such, she borrowed jewels from the Queen’s personal collection to befit the event, including a diamond-encrusted brooch in the shape of Canada’s national emblem, the maple leaf. The broach was first worn by the Queen she visited Canada in 1951.
3 Malaysia: 2012
2 The Solomon Islands: 2012
…Kate had a bad hair day! No, we're not joking, nor are we being melodramatic; this truly was a global news story. There had been signs that the Duchess of Cambridge may be veering into bad hair day territory when she touched down in the humid air of Singapore, but it was in the Solomon Islands that things really came to a head. The humid weather along with the Duke and Duchess taking part in ceremonial dances left Kate’s hair, well, frizzy.
1 Australia and New Zealand: 2014
Of course the number one spot has to go to the tour the Duke and Duchess are currently undertaking, that of Australia and New Zealand. William is no stranger to these parts, most recently visiting in 2011 before his marriage to Catherine. There he met with those affected by the earthquakes in the New Zealand city of Christchurch as well as victims of flooding and forest fires in the Australian areas of Queensland and Victoria. As a child, too, William visited these nations with his parents Prince Charles and Princess Diana, but these trips are Catherine’s first to the region.
The visit is winding down and so far we've seen the royal couple try their hand at cricket, be greeted by Maori dance on arrival to New Zealand, sample the local wine, and even take a thrill-seeking boat ride down the Shotover River in southern New Zealand. We also saw the royal couple don their glad rags as they unveiled a portrait of the Queen in the capital city of Wellington and Kate, keeping her host nation in mind, wore a black gown embroidered with the national emblem of New Zealand, the fern.
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