King’s first state visit confirmed as trips to Paris and Berlin

Buckingham Palace has confirmed the destination of King Charles and Queen Camilla’s first official tour since his accession to the throne. The trip will last between March 26 and March 31 and will see the royals travelling to Paris, Bordeaux, Berlin, and Hamburg. In a statement, Buckingham Palace said: “The visit will celebrate Britain’s relationship with France and Germany, marking our shared histories, culture and values.

“It will also provide an opportunity to look forwards and demonstrate the many ways the UK is working in partnership with France and Germany, whether that be to tackle climate change; respond to the conflict in Ukraine; seize trade and investment opportunities or share the best of our arts and culture.

“As well as speaking to the strength of the UK’s bilateral relationships with France and Germany, Their Majesties’ visits will include engagements highlighting the importance of sustainability and community – key themes which have been embraced by citizens of all our countries.

“There will also be opportunities to reflect on the sacrifices and challenges of our shared past, out of which has come an enduring legacy of cooperation and reconciliation.”

The first half of the tour, between March 26 and 29, will be in France, and will include a royal joint appearance with French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte Macron for a ceremony of Remembrance and wreath laying at the Arc de Triomphe.

While Camilla and Mrs Macron will officially open the new Manet and Degas exhibition at the Musée d’Orsay, the King will address politicians at the French Senate.

Their Majesties will also be guests of honour at a state banquet hosted by the Macrons at Versailles castle.

In Bordeaux, Charles and Camilla will not only meet members of the local French and British communities but also see first-hand the devastation caused by last summer’s wildfires.

The second leg of the tour will include a state banquet hosted by German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his wife Elke Büdenbender and an address by the King at the German Federal Parliament, the Bundestag.

The King will also meet refugees who recently arrived from Ukraine and hear about the support Germany provides for them, while Camilla will accompany Ms Büdenbender at the Komische Oper in Berlin to learn more about the opera company’s outreach projects and community engagement.

The stops in Brandenburg and Hamburg will include among other engagements a meeting with a joint German/UK military unit and a visit to St Nikolai Memorial, a church destroyed during WW2.

Reports Paris and Berlin were likely to be Their Majesties’ first official destinations abroad emerged earlier this year.

In January, French media reported the King would make his first overseas stop in Paris six months after France’s President had invited the sovereign to his country.

The German Press Agency said last month Charles and Camilla would move from France to Germany and claimed the King would deliver a speech at the Bundestag.

Katja Mast, First Parliamentary Secretary of the Social Democratic Party (SPD) parliamentary group told the agency: “I am pleased that the British leader, King Charles III, will speak in the Bundestag.

“The German-British friendship is of particular importance for Europe and the world, especially after Brexit and in times of the imperialist war of aggression by Putin in Ukraine, which violates international law.”

At the time, Buckingham Palace remained tight-lipped on these trips.

Charles and Camilla’s last visit abroad prior to becoming King and Queen took place in June last year, when they headed to Kigali in Rwanda.

There, the then Prince of Wales represented the late Queen at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

Among other engagements undertaken during the three-day trip, Camilla visited a library and met young readers.

She also joined her husband for a poignant visit to the Kigali Genocide Memorial.

Following the death of Elizabeth II, King Charles toured numerous cities across the UK but did not leave the country’s borders.

In February, it was claimed the monarch had even cancelled his annual skiing trip to Klosters in Switzerland both to avoid any injury ahead of the Coronation and because aides believed it would be a better look if His Majesty’s first trip abroad was an official one.

King Charles has travelled to Germany several times as Prince of Wales.

He and Camilla were last in Berlin in November 2020, when they met Mr Steinmeier and attended the central remembrance ceremony on the National Day of Mourning at the Bundestag.

Their last joint official visit to France took place on June 6 2019, when the now King and Queen attended services in Bayeux Cathedral and at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Cemetery to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Normandy landings on D-Day.

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