The Royal newly weds have hardly been out of the spotlight for a second as they embark on their first official trip as a couple, to Canada. The quiet northern nation couldn’t be happier. What’s the itinerary? Follow the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge as they jump from one coast to the other.
The couple’s tour, named “Moving Forward Together” (yes their holiday has a name) will take them to eight different cities, mainly in Canada. Their 11-day trip will start in the capital of the Commonwealth nation: Ottawa, just in time to celebrate Canada Day on July 1st with the entire country. Other stops include Quebec City, the riotous Montreal, quiet but very picturesque Charlottetown on Prince-Edward-Island, Yellowknife (middle of nowhere) and Calgary before catching flights to Los Angeles in California for the America leg of their trip.
Want to enjoy a slice of the Royal road trip across Canada?
Ottawa (June 30-July 2)
Ottawa, the nation’s capital, will no doubt be decked to the nines in anticipation for the Royal couple’s arrival. You can bet as well as the Canada Day celebrations which will take place on July 1st will be the biggest yet with street parties, free outdoor concerts and a spectacular fireworks show in the evening. If you’re in Ottawa don’t miss a free tour of the Houses of Parliament, a stroll around Byward Market and digging into a greasy but oh-so-delicious beaver tail pastry drowning in cinnamon and maple syrup.
Montreal (July 2)
This city is the capital of jazz and has been crowned (by UNESCO) as Canada’s capital of design too. It’s full of students and artist types who feed the city’s very European-like coffee shop culture. The city’s vibe is nothing short of addictive, especially in the summertime when outdoor concerts are the norm. In August Montreal hosts the biggest jazz festival in the world! Grab your dancing shoes and get ready to experience this city. A word of warning, much like Paris, Montreal locals are very proud of their French heritage and it will work very strongly in your favour to learn a few phrases en Français before your trip.
Quebec City (July 3)
The capital of the province of Quebec has much the same attitude towards speaking French as Montreal. The city itself is a mix of old heritage buildings from when the first wave of immigrants came over from Europe to settle in the New World. Perched right on the St. Lawrence River, don’t pass up a tour of the Old Town, a sleep in one of the charming bed & breakfast hotels, or the city’s great museums, many located in original 17th and 18th century homes. You can’t get much more French than this place… unless you actually go to France.
Charlottetown (July 3-4)
There’s nothing about the capital city of Prince-Edward-Island that’s not to love. It’s quiet and calm but still knows how to throw killer parties. The downtown core is full to the brim with modern and trendy eateries, chic bars and cafés you can spend hours in, milking away at that cup of coffee that was finished hours ago. It has an undeniable “small-town” feel to it and plenty of parks and wilderness to enjoy. PEI may be small but it certainly packs a lot of punch for one visit.
Summerside (July 4)
There’s not much happening in Summerside, so why is the Royal couple making a stop there? Well, a certain Canadian writer once wrote a book that took place there. L. M. Montgomery’s story of Anne of Green Gables unfolded in a fictional town on the island but everyone knows that Avonlea was based on this small and sleep seaside town. Kate Middleton was enthralled by the stories of Anne Shirley when she was little, but then again, what young girl with an inkling towards literature wasn’t sucked into the woes and later romances of orphan Anne and Gilbert Blythe?
Yellowknife (July 4-6)
Yellowknife is, to say the least, in the middle of nowhere. And that is the beauty of it. The city was founded as mining hub, today there are hardly even 20,000 full-time residents. The dark and bleak winters are strong enough to break any person’s spirit but once the summer rolls around, it’s party time. The city itself is gorgeous, with rugged wilderness creeping right up to the city limits. Lakes, rivers, beaches and forests call once the summer heat sets in making it a great spot to enjoy the vast wilderness that Canada is famous for.
Calgary (July 6-8)
Calgary made its way onto to itinerary for more personal reasons. Kate’s late grandfather trained as a pilot during WWII here at the airfield outside of the city. The couple plans to visit the facility and rumour has it that they may also attend the Calgary Stampede as well, the city’s most famous summertime attraction. Yahoo Buckaroo! Just one and a half hours from Calgary is Banff National Park, arguably one of the most scenic parts of Canada. Sweeping and rugged mountains with turquoise-water lakes in the valleys. Soaring pines, grizzlies and hot springs. The Canadian Rockies do nothing but impress.
Have you ever visited Canada? Which city was your favourite?