The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall will visit Australia, beginning their engagements in Brisbane on Wednesday 4th April. His Royal Highness, accompanied by The Duchess, will represent Her Majesty The Queen at the opening of the XXI Commonwealth Games, reading out Her Majesty's customary message, calling on athletes to come together in the spirit of friendly competition. Their Royal Highnesses will visit Brisbane & the Gold Coast together; before His Royal Highness continues his visit to Queensland and the Northern Territory, concluding on Tuesday 10th April.
The Prince of Wales will visit Vanuatu on Saturday 7th April, where his programme will include learning more about the reconstruction which has taken place following the devastating impact of Cyclone Pam. His Royal Highness will highlight the challenges faced by Island States vulnerable to the growing threat of climate change, as has been most recently demonstrated by the dreadful effects of Cyclone Gita in Tonga.
In addition to the theme of Commonwealth, the tour will include engagements which focus on the themes of community, sustainability and disaster recovery and resilience; as well as visits which highlight The Prince's connections to the Australian Armed Forces. The Tour will include visits to Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Bundaberg and Cairns in Queensland, and the Gove Peninsula and Darwin in the Northern Territory. In Vanuatu, The Prince will visit Port Vila on Efate.
- The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall will attend the Opening Ceremony of the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast and will tour the Athletes Village, before His Royal Highness presents medals during the Swimming Finals. In Cairns, The Prince will watch the Women's Basketball, and will meet the teams after the game.
- Their Royal Highnesses will visit also Commonwealth House on the Gold Coast, a trade and investment hub.
- The Duchess of Cornwall, President of the Women of the World WOW Festival, will host a tea for festival supporters. This year, WOW Brisbane will celebrate the Women of the Commonwealth.
- The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall will visit the Lady Cilento Children's Hospital in Brisbane and will learn about the work of Juiced TV, an entertainment initiative which allows TV programmes to be made by children, for children, ultimately benefitting their health.
- His Royal Highness will tour the Bundaberg Rum distillery, before attending a community event with local residents. During this event, His Royal Highness, President of The Prince's Trust Australia, will hear more about the work his charity has been doing to partner with local community members to help threatened loggerhead turtles.
- His Royal Highness will attend a reception at Government House in Brisbane hosted by His Excellency the Honourable Paul de Jersey, Governor of Queensland, to celebrate The Prince's relationship with Australia over 70 years, attended by guests who are also turning 70 this year and some of the inspirational Australians he has met on previous visits to the country.
- In Cairns, The Prince will visit the Royal Flying Doctors Service, which is celebrating its 90th anniversary, where he will tour the base, meeting staff, viewing RFDS aircraft and naming a Beechcraft Super King Air 350.
- His Royal Highness will visit Nhulunbuy, on the Gove Peninsula, where he will learn about the work of Dhimurru Rangers who protect and preserve the land, meet the Gumatj Aboriginal Traditional Owners and view the work of local artists at the Yirrkala Arts Centre.
Sustainability engagements include:
- The Prince of Wales will visit a coral cay on the Great Barrier Reef. 2018 is the International Year of the Reef, and The Prince has been at the forefront of efforts to improve coral reef health and resilience in light of the threats these valuable eco-systems face from climate change, over fishing, land based pollution and direct physical damage. His Royal Highness will be joined during this visit by Terri, Bindi and Robert Irwin, and will attend a Roundtable on Coral Resilience.
- The Prince will visit the Daintree Rainforest, where he will attend a Roundtable on Sustainable Forestry and learn about more about the unique ecosystem of the rainforest.
Disaster Recovery & Resilience engagements include:
- The Prince of Wales will tour the National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre in Darwin. Teams based at the centre are trained to deal with natural disasters and terrorist attacks. In 2015, following the devastating Cyclone Pam, members of the Australian Medical Assistance Team deployed to Vanuatu, providing treatment to 1341 patients.
- In Vanuatu, The Prince will visit the Chief's Nakamal and Port Vila Central Hospital, both of which were severely damaged by Cyclone Pam and have subsequently been restored.
- During a visit to HMAS Cairns, The Prince of Wales will tour HMAS Leeuwin and will present the ship's company with the Gloucester Cup, an award for the unit of the Australian Navy which displays the highest level of overall proficiency.
- His Royal Highness will also tour Larrakeyah Barracks in Darwin, home to the North West Mobile Force (NORFORCE), meeting soldiers and their families. In 2015, Prince Harry was based at the barracks during a secondment to the Australian Defence Force.
The Prince and Duchess will also meet the Governor General of Australia, His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove and Lady Cosgrove. In addition, His Royal Highness will meet the Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull and the Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten. In Vanuatu, The Prince of Wales will meet the President of Vanuatu, His Excellency Obed Moses Tallis, and the Prime Minister, Charlot Salwai Tabimasmas.
Notes to Editors
This is The Prince of Wales's 16th visit to Australia, and The Duchess of Cornwall's 3rd.