Queen Elizabeth II has begun her 16th official Australian visit in Canberra and will spend most of this trip in our Nation’s Capital. On Wednesday, the Queen and her husband, Prince Philip arrived in Canberra’s ACT, for their Official Royal Australian visit. They both began immediately into their 11-day Aussie trip, by waving to many children and adults gathered to welcome them to Australian soil.
Queen Elizabeth II first visited Australia back in February 1954. Since this time she has visited every state in Australia as well as the ACT and Northern Territory.
The Queen also visited Australia again in the following years:
- February 1963,
- March 1970,
- October 1973,
- February 1974,
- March 1977,
- May 1980,
- September and October 1981,
- October 1982,
- March 1986,
- April 1988,
- February 1990 (for refuelling only),
- February 1992,
- March 2000,
- February 2002,
- March 2006,
- October 2011.
Many people think that this will be Queen Elizabeth II’s last visit to Australia since she is now 85 years old, but only the future will tell if that is true or not. Even in the first 2 days of this Aussie trip, she has shown that even at age 85, she has more energy than many others of us.
Shortly after arriving, the Queen received a bouquet of flowers from a lady who had also presented flowers to her back on Queen Elizabeth’s first Australian visit in 1954. This young lady was only six years old when she first met the Queen all those many years ago. Margaret Cunningham said to Queen Elizabeth, “It is lovely to see you again after all these years.”
The annual flower show, known as the Floriade, was held in Canberra from 17 September to 16 October 2011. Next year in 2012 the Floriade will celebrate its 25th year. Even though the show finished a few days before Queen Elizabeth II’s arrival in Australia, the event coordinators of the Floriade decided to provide a special invitation to Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, to come and view the spectacular flowers on display. Needless to say that Queen Elizabeth seemed very impressed with the gorgeous, colourful flower displays as she walked through Floriade.
Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh also enjoyed a relaxing cruise on Lake Burley Griffin. The boat that was especially transported from Sydney Harbour to Canberra for this auspicious event was The Admiral’s Barge. It is a 12.8 metre Royal Navy boat that has decks made from teak and royal blue flanks. Perfect for a Royal visit.
The Royal Couple will be spending most of their 11 days in Australia around Canberra, but they are also going to visit Perth, Melbourne and Queensland.