The Duke of Cambridge began his visit to Kuwait today, undertaking engagements that focused on conservation – plus quite a generous lunch! The royal visit is part of the celebrations to mark the 120th anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Friendship, between the UK and Kuwait, and will focus on education, the environment, and defence.
Prince William has received a warm welcome in Kuwait!
Arriving on Sunday night, the Duke of Cambridge was met by Sheikh Ali al-Jarrah Al-Sabah, a member of the Kuwaiti royal family.
Today, he visited Jahra nature reserve near Kuwait City where he met volunteer litter pickers. pic.twitter.com/GeBUSXbTFQ
— The Royal Family Channel (@RoyalFamilyITNP) December 2, 2019
Prince William landed at Kuwait International Airport on Sunday night, having travelled to the country on a commercial flight. The Duke briefly met where he met the Minister of the Amiri Diwan (Royal Palace) Affairs, Sheikh Ali al-Jarrah al-Sabah, for an official welcome.
The Queen has only ever visited Kuwait in 1979, while Prince Charles has undertaken two trips to the country.
Today saw the future King head to the al Jahra Nature Reserve outside Kuwait City, where he was driven around the wildlife hotspot in a gold buggy! He was given a tour of the wetlands, home to Arabian red foxes and greater spotted eagles, as well as a wide range of fish species.
William was seen scoping out the feathered locals, and got to see flamingoes and eagles up close.
Part of the visit also saw the Duke speak to those participating in a beach clean up.
During a visit to the Sheikh Abdullah Al Salem Cultural Centre, the Royal got to see how the new museum is educating and engaging young Kuwaitis in innovative way; it works across fields such as space exploration and robotics, as well as natural history and human biology.
William revealed he had been anxious to catch the match on Sunday night, during a session on reflexes and sporting activities; he told a group of young boys at the museum that he had rushed back to his room after landing to see his club, Aston Villa, take on Manchester United, with whom they drew.
The Duke of Cambridge during day two of his tour of Kuwait and Oman.
— PA Images (@PAImages) December 2, 2019
He even had a go at using rubbish to make useful items, as part of a school group’s Trash to Treasure programme.
Next on the agenda was a lunch with the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah – who has lead the country for 13 years after taking over from his brother in 2006 – at the Bayan Palace.
After greeting dignitaries, religious leaders from the Muslim and Christian communities, and members of the extended royal family, the group supped. It was, in fact, more of a banquet, with five courses! The menu included cream of asparagus soup with white truffle oil, sole fish fillet, lamb beryani and Black Forest cake.
The 90-year-old Emir joked that The Duke of Cambridge had ‘brought the British weather’ with him, noting the grey skies.
“I know. I brought all of my summer clothes as well!” William replied.
Earlier this evening, Prince William wrapped up his first day with a visit to the desert with Sheikh Mohamed Abdullah for a ‘cultural experience’, of coffee and camels. The event was in a traditional Kuwaiti tent, where he was welcomed by traditional music and dancers.
Prince William Duke of Cambridge attends a reception hosted by Sheikh Mohamed Abdullah which took place in a traditional Kuwaiti tent in the desert outside of Kuwait City #RoyalVisitKuwait #Royals @UKinOman @ShutterstockNow pic.twitter.com/tiaFui7xxC
— Rookie (@royalfocus1) December 2, 2019
The Royal saw a hunting falcon and learnt about their history within Kuwait, and chatted about previous trips his family had made, before settling down on the floor around a campfire to talk. Those invited to the engagement included students, young leaders, and entrepreneurs, as well as people working in the mental health arena.
At one point, William struggled to get a word in edgeways, as a camel kept grunting as he spoke. He laughed it off, of course, and gesticulated at the situation.
Tomorrow we will see the father-of-three join Kuwaiti and UK troops on a ‘Desert Warrior’ exercise.
The Duke’s visit was at the request of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.