Prince William and Kate were given a ceremonial welcome to Canada as they touched down in the city of Victoria on Saturday (Sept. 24). Among the first people to greet the royals were Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie, who were personally responsible for sending William and Kate an invitation to visit Canada.
The politician and his wife were ready and waiting to meet the royals as they stepped off the plane. The couples chatted briefly on the tarmac with Mr Trudeau immediately putting a slightly shy Prince George at ease as he bent down to talk to the three-year-old.
Both Kate and Sophie matched each other in style and elegance, opting for blue dresses and completing their looks with hats.
The group, who were joined by other leading dignitaries, then travelled to Government House where William and Kate settled their children Prince George and Princess Charlotte. Having left their children in the safe hands of their nanny Maria, the duke and duchess joined Mr and Mrs Trudeau for the official welcoming ceremony at the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia.
Guard of honour and gun salute at the ceremonial welcome #RoyalVisitCanada#RoyalTourCanadapic.twitter.com/ejJqmbR8bh
— Emily Nash (@emynash) September 25, 2016
William and Kate paid respects at Victoria's Cenotaph and unveiled a new plaque paying tribute to the Canadian veterans who were involved in the Afghanistan conflict.
Mr Trudeau took to the stage to officially welcome the royal guests of honour, joking that he understood the challenges of travelling with young children.
It was then the Duke's turn to speak, and William said that both he and Kate were "delighted" to be back in Canada, the country they first toured as newlyweds in 2011.
"We are so pleased that George and Charlotte can be with us... beginning their own lifetime of friendship with this wonderful country," he said. "Catherine and I have asked to meet as many people from as many walks of life as we can while we are here."
Following the ceremony, the Prime Minister had a private audience with William and Kate at Government House.
The Canadian politician will act as a guide to the royals, accompanying them on some of William and Kate's 32 engagements. Ahead of the tour Mr Trudeau said: "Canadians have tremendous affection for the royal family, and are excited to welcome the Duke and Duchess to our nation for their second official royal tour of Canada. Sophie and I look forward to showcasing beautiful British Columbia and to promoting awareness of both youth and mental health issues alongside Their Royal Highnesses."
Royal watchers will be eager to see how Kate and Justin's wife Sophie interact during the tour. The two ladies have much in common. Both understand the pressure of living life in the spotlight, while also raising young children at home.
Sophie has won over the hearts of her nation, much like Kate has back on home soil. Canada's current "Trudeaumania" is as much thanks to Sophie's popularity as that of her husband. A former TV personality, she has also been praised for her style and for setting off a 'Sophie effect' akin to the famous 'Kate effect'.
Together, she and Justin are, as she puts it, "a team," and he doesn't hesitate in showing his wife affection, or praising her in public – much like our William and Kate.
Stay tuned to HELLO! Online for the best and most comprehensive coverage as our royal reporter Emily Nash joins the Cambridge family on this historic tour.