@teatimewiththecambridges , a royal blogger whose passion for and knowledge of the Royal Family, particularly of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their three children, reflects through her impressive Instagram feed, shares her thoughts on the Royal Visit Pakistan. Read on to find out more…
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s Royal Visit to Pakistan was yet another example of their quiet transformation into the next Prince and Princess of Wales and eventually the future King and Queen. This was their second high profile tour, with the first being The Duke of Cambridge’s visit to the Middle East, where he became the first royal to officially visit Israel, in less than 18 months. But their visit to Pakistan was different as they truly showcased their ability to carry what the Palace has called their ‘most complex tour to date.’
William and Catherine’s team surely did a phenomenal job at compiling their itinerary for the couple’s 5-day visit. After an official welcome on Monday evening, they started the next morning with a visit to Model College for Girls, where they highlighted the importance of access to quality education for girls and young women. They then headed to the Margalla Hills, where they joined schoolchildren in activities related to conservation, one of the most significant areas of The Duke’s work.
After a morning focused on their charitable interest, it was time for the official work. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge met with Prime Minister Imran Khan, who was a good friend of Prince William’s mother, for lunch before heading to the presidential Palace and meeting The President and First Lady. The day ended off with a reception hosted by the British High Commissioner at the gorgeous Pakistan Monument.
The next day took The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to Northern Pakistan, where they highlighted Climate Change and the people being affected by it. In the Hindu Kush Mountain Range, they witnessed a melting glacier before viewing a village that had been severely affected by flooding that was caused by the glacier. They then headed to the settlement of the Kalash people, where they were given a huge warm welcome!
Day Four of their Royal visit took them to the “bustling” city of Lahore. Their first stop was the SOS Children’s Village, where they spent time playing and reading to the children before joining a birthday party where The Duchess gave a speech and even spoke some Urdu! After their visit to the Village, The Duke and Duchess put their extremely competitive energy to good use when they visited the National Cricket Academy and played cricket with children part of the British Council’s Dosti program.
Their last two engagements of the day was an iconic visit to the Badshahi Mosque, where they joined a discussion with faith leaders to understand how they are promoting interfaith harmony within their communities, and a visit to the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital. This is probably where one of the most heartwarming movements of the tour occurred when The Duchess put on a plastic tiara, and The Duke drank some fake tea with seven-year-old Wafia Rehmani, who has a kidney tumor.
After travel delays, some engagements on their last day were canceled, but they finished off the tour with a visit to an Army Canine Center, where they got to play with some adorable puppies! The engagements on the trip were all meticulously planned and showcased both The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s interest.
As always, with Royal women, fashion was going to be an important topic on their visit. Knowing that, as usual, The Duchess of Cambridge would try to pay tribute to her host country made me as a fan a bit nervous. We have seen all too many times how thin the line between cultural appropriation and cultural appreciation is. So, all I could do was hope that The Duchess and her team were well prepared and keep my eyes open for comments because it was never going to be my place to tell someone whether their culture was being appropriated or appreciated.
Thankfully, The Duchess of Cambridge’s outfits were well received by the people of Pakistan. I saw multiple comments on how thankful they were that she was respecting their traditions and culture. Her favorite designer this tour by far was Maheen Khan, but she also added some Gul Ahmed and Élan designs to her wardrobe.
And of course she mixed in some British designers. Her arrival outfit was designed by one of her favorites, Catherine Walker, while her dress for their only evening engagement at the Pakistan Monument was designed by Jenny Packham. Most of her accessories were pieces she frequently wears in the U.K.
It wasn’t only The Duchess who used her fashion for soft diplomacy! The Duke of Cambridge surprised everyone (this is the man who wears the same blue suit over and over again) when he stepped out in a traditional Sherwani designed by Naushemian. It was a pleasant surprise so well received that it was the first, and likely only time, The Duke overshadowed his Duchess.
While leaving the Badshahi Mosque, The Duke and Duchess were told by The Honorary Consul Fakir Aijaz Uddin that, “If there’s one word to describe your visit, it is ‘joy.’ You have radiated joy wherever you have been.” I highly agree with this. Even across the world, I could feel the palpable joy from the Pakistani people. I got multiple comments from some of my Pakistani followers expressing their joy at having The Duke and Duchess visit their country. It made me even more happy and excited throughout the tour.
Royal Visit Pakistan was undoubtedly a huge success, and everyone involved, especially The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, should be very proud.