The red carpet was rolled out in Ottawa today as King Willem-Alexanderand his wife Queen Maxima of the Netherlands have arrived for their three-day visit to Canada, and the Dutch royals have embarked on a busy first day.
After a welcoming ceremony at Rideau Hall, they are scheduled to visit Parliament Hill and the National War Museum. On Wednesday evening, Gov. Gen. David Johnston and his wife Sharon will host a state banquet in honour of the king and queen.
While this is the couple’s first official visit to Canada, they met Prime Minister Stephen Harper earlier this year when he visited Holland to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Netherlands’ liberation. There he paid tribute to the Canadian soldiers that died during the conflict and reinforced Canada's commitment to a solid relationship with the country.
On Thursday, Willem-Alexander and Máxima will unveil a scholarship program at the University of Waterloo, tour an orchid farm in Beamsville, Ont., and meet with delegates from Dutch agricultural companies.
The final day of their state visit includes a visit to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario in Toronto, a speech at the Canadian-Netherlands Resilient Cities Seminar, a trip to the Toronto Islands and a reception at the Art Gallery of Ontario.
After bidding farewell to Canada on May 29, the couple will make their inaugural visit to the United States.