Friday, 15 April 2016

William and Kate Tackle Hike to Tiger's Nest

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge put their fitness levels to the test this morning as they set off on a hike to Paro Taktsang, the Tiger’s Nest monastery.


Kensington Palace said today "promises to be a very special one" and noted "it is a magical place the Duke and Duchess are thrilled to be visiting. Their hike will allow them to get a real sense of the natural and spiritual beauty of the country".


Beautiful photo of the couple smiling as they taking in the surroundings.


The hike is certainly no mean feat, taking five to six hours depending on one's pace.


In an unusual move William and Kate said hello to media as they passed them during their trek. We very rarely see the royals interact with the press at all, it's safe to say relations are much improved and more relaxed on this trip.


The Duke and Duchess talk to their guide Phunto Tashi beside a Buddhist prayer wheel.


At the half-way point William said: "Let's do it, Let's go."


As the royals looked at the view ahead William said "Look at the roof of the temple. It's cool. What a great view". Kate replied "It's very special".


The couple pose at a beautiful point overlooking the monastery. Emily Andrews shared this lovely snap of the couple.


William said the Tiger's Nest hike had been tough today and Kate joked: 'It's a great way to burn off the curry.


It was nice to see William and Kate interacting. There were plenty of cute moments.


A lovely moment between the two.


William and Kate holding hands along the trek.


Tiger's Nest is a Himalayan Buddhist sacred site and temple complex, located in the cliffside of the upper Paro valley in Bhutan, dating back to 1862.  Guru Padmasambhava is said to have meditated for three years, three months, three weeks, three days and three hours in the 8th century at the site. He is credited with introducing Buddhism to Bhutan.


There are many legends associated with Tiger's Nest. One of the most popular - Guru Rinpoche flew to the site as the fiery Dorje Drolo, one of his eight manifestations, on the back of a tigress.


The monastery buildings consist of four main temples and residential shelters ideally designed by adapting to the granite rock ledges, the caves and the rocky terrain. Out of the eight caves, four are relatively easy to access. The cave where Padmasmabhava first entered, riding the tiger, is known as 'Tholu Phuk', and the original cave where he resided and meditated is known as the 'Pel Phuk'. He directed the monks to build the monastery here. The monastery is so precariously perched that it is said "it clings to the side of the mountain like a gecko".


Prince Charles visited the monastery in 1998.


William and Kate's staff also made the trek. Below we see hair stylish Amanda Cook Tucker, assistant Sophie Agnew and PA Natasha Archer.


When they reached their destination, the couple spent their time inside the monastery privately. They lit butter lamps and received special blessings.


William and Kate bought trinkets.

Rebecca English

Simon Perry shared a photo of the exact pair.


Afterwards, they spoke to the press for a few moment. The couple revealed they've been "massively" missing their children and are "looking forward to seeing them. They also said they have spoken to George and Charlotte "many times". Kate noted she saw a couple with a baby at the monastery and thought "it was very brave of them".


More from the Mail Online:

'As the pair came back down the mountain, William greeted reporters by saying 'hello intrepid explorers'. He said: 'Are you sure you didn't just get off a donkey? I wish I had! 'It was amazing. Beautiful scenery as you saw. With the mountains like this and the temples at the top, it was just stunning to walk up there and see all the scenery and to listen to some of the history and religion of the country. It's really important when you come on a trip like this to see some of that.'
Asked about his comment that it was 'easy' at the half-way point, William admitted: 'I may have slightly spoken too soon. It was a little bit cheeky on the second part definitely.'  Kate described it as an 'amazing experience', adding 'I feel very lucky and fortunate to see such beautiful scenery. As William said, we have learnt about the country.'
The King of Bhutan had sent some of his own horses to accompany the couple in case either struggled and needed to go on horseback, but neither of them had needed to. '

Watch the video below.


The interview was organised last minute due to a row erupting between KP and the media over lack of access during much of the event.

Emily Andrews

Kensington Palace said afterwards "The Duke and Duchess have just returned to Thimphu after an amazing day at the Tiger's Nest. TRH hiked to the top of the mountain, and were taken by monks through the temples at the monastery. It was important for TRH to learn more about Bhutan's history & religion, whilst showcasing its natural scenery."


The Duchess' outdoors look consisted of several pieces.


Lena via Twitter believes Kate wore the Jaeger Classic Linen Blouse.


The £89 blouse is made from lightweight and breathable linen - a good choice for the nature of the day. The piece features a curved hem and handy button detail to keep the sleeves in place when you roll them up. The blouse is available at JaegerJohn Lewis and House of Fraser.

House of Fraser

The blouse comes in several colours including Ice Green and Orange.

Jaeger

It appears Kate wore her Really Wild Clothing Shooting Waistcoat. Kate first wore the soft leather piece for a day of outdoor activities at Widehorizons Adventure Centre in 2012. Kate's waistcoat is sold out, but the Nubuck Shoot Waistcoat is very similar for those seeking an alternative.


The Duchess wore skinny jeans, the exact pair has not been identified yet.


Kate wore her Penelope Chilvers Long Tassel Boots.  The $475 handmade boot is cut close to the ankle for a more feminine fit, has a scalloped detail at the zip panel, and a leather tassel on the zip pull. It is fully leather-lined and has a Goodyear Welted Commando rubber sole.


Kate had the boots for over a decade, they remain a trusty staple in her collection. I was surprised she didn't opt for hiking boots today; the Chilvers boots must be incredibly comfortable.


The Duchess accessorised with her Kiki McDonough Citrine drops.

Kiki McDonough

Kate wore her Ray Ban Wayfarers.


And her Flora Garments Indian Embroidered Stole.

Flora Garments

There's a video from the trek available on YouTube.


William and Kate will attend a reception next!

206 comments:

  1. hmm charlotte your too fast my friend says when you go tiger nest when you finishes you will see the beauty god given and its all worth it sweat and puffing are all worth it its seems she recycle her outfit

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  2. How absolutely sacred & special & stunning I realised William has his arm around his wife they look so natural & lovely what a special day for them! Cool his dad also been on their route. And I couldn't help wonder if seeing the press Trekking with them up the mountain prompted Williams generous & relaxed chat / I mean without the media abroad their tours wouldn't impact the world so far. Oh warm fuzzies & 'namaste" from me to you this Friday afternoon in Australia. This week has been EPIC & SURREAL to see. Love this couple.
    Theresa

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  3. Tedi in California15 April 2016 at 08:03

    What magnificent views. Such a beautiful country. It is so wonderful seeing all this beauty up close. Thank you seems pretty inadequate Charlotte. You have done a mind boggling job this week. How I will miss checking in once the tour comes to a close. William and Kate look terrific. So young and energetic. I know they will be tired when they get home, and they probably won't get much rest, what with George and Charlotte wanting to be with them every second. A happy reunion for parents and kids.
    I love the outfits they are wearing for this trek.

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  4. Love this engagement. So romantic and interesting. Kate and William both look very relaxed.

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  5. The hike takes 6h up and down.

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  6. Beautiful scenery. This is such a treat.

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  7. Oh wow, I wasn't even expecting another post so soon, well done!
    This is an amazing experience for William and Catherine. It must be healing for William to come to all these places that his parents visited, but being in a good place with his life and having Catherine by his side to support him, who is very strong and feminine at the same time. On this trip Catherine reminds me of Princess Mary of Denmark, she oozes love and inner peace, and William can feel it. I am also thinking that this journey brings so much healing to the Royal Family as a whole. It may hopefully erase those sad moments by Charles and Diana, and replace them with happy ones. I am almost feeling spiritual over this trip!!
    Royal Watcher

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    1. Anon 8:40 what wonderful insight:) I had only been thinking about the Taj & Diana's memory there as a setting where the "reset button" might be pushed by this darling & genuinely in love Couple, who are obviously an amazing Team..... the kind that Diana would have liked to have had with Charles. However, you are right, the whole Tour has been a healing & resetting experience for The Royal Family & it's People:)

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    2. I think you are right Becca 17:42, Diana would have loved to have that kind of relationship with Charles. A relationship where she felt safe and protected, like Catherine does with William. I don't think we would have seen the exhibitionist side of her then at all. She was after all an innocent young and shy girl when she married Charles. It is so wonderful to see that William has grown into that kind of man that his mother would have wished for. It is nearly surprising given the surroundings of his upbringing. We know that Diana was the ultimate mother, but I also do think that Charles was/is a good father, and his relationship with Camilla is warm and loving, the way it should be.
      I wonder if William and Catherine continues to be a bit more open and friendly with the press, would they stop writing nasty things, or are they just constantly there looking for the next "disaster story"? Hard to know. Toe-gate and Marilyn-gate stories just makes me wonder!!! Her toes look fine to me!!!!
      Royal Watcher

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  8. Hi everyone from Milan! I'm a big fan of this blog but it's the first time I write something.Id' like to thank you Charlotte for the amazing job that you are doing! I't s been a really great week!
    I've really enjoyed these pictures this morning!They both look relaxed and happy! Kate is even more gorgeous than usual on this tour, look at her face! ciao!

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    1. So nice to hear from you Eleonore.

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  9. What a stunning walk/trek. I would love to do one like that. An experience of a life time.

    How HRH walked in those boots I do not know! Despite the comfortable sole, the length would have irritated me.

    How on earth did they get back down? Walked? Or was it 6 hours round trip?

    The magic and serenity of the location is really suitable our couple. They look refreshed and relaxed despite the hectic schedule.

    I know we will not go into Catherine withdrawal after the tour because of the summer schedule and the Queen's birthday celebrations, but gee, I'm really going to miss the scenery and relaxed, interesting, colourful, different outfits that this tour has produced.

    Cara, Australia.

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden15 April 2016 at 14:07

      Oh, I am sure we will go into withdrawal. Even if they keep a rather full scheduel going forward, it still wont be this intense. I always go through a little withdrawal after the tours. Thankfully we'll have all the pictures to analyze and some stuff usually shows up a little late :)

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    2. Tedi in California15 April 2016 at 16:13

      I will definitely miss all this interaction. As I said above, today was very special. I am sure they have been affected by all they have seen and felt on their amazing journey this week. It will stay with them, and change sone of their outlooks on life, in a positive way. So glad they spoke with the press, and in such a warm way too.

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    3. Is it just me, or has This Tour had an especially Spiritual & Mindful nature about it?

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    4. Tedi in California15 April 2016 at 17:59

      It certainly has Becca.

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    5. Based on an article I read, it supposedly took only 3 hours to get up. On average it takes 6 hours. They actually rode a vehicle down.

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  10. Charlotte thank you for your post ! Good treck for them.
    By the way it seems the two pictures from Kate above are from Really Wild Clothing Company products no ? I didn't know Pénélope brand. I thought it was boots from really wild clothing

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  11. just great post Charlotte. i wonder how early you got up?? its 12.49 here in Pakistan nd so or an hour difference in bhutan may be. London's time is 4 hours left means it would be 8 a.m in london... jst great
    Catherine looks chic and beautiful.. a good repeat of the jacket after a long time...
    faiza

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  12. On a different note, I have taken a real interest in the twitter accounts of the journalists covering this Royal Tour. Am not on twitter, and have never really looked into it before, but am enjoying their candid coverage.

    It seems Chris Jackson https://twitter.com/ChrisJack_Getty really captures something special of TRH. I don't know what his opinion of/relationship with the couple is, but his photos are really respectful and capture something really special. Am enjoying his images best of all.

    Cara, Australia

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    1. Oh Thx Cara for The Heads Up re: Twitter! I would never have thought about that. Now something new to check out:)

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    2. Hee hee! Chris Jackson is rather more on the inside than the rest of the press. He's dating Kate's PA, Natasha Archer.

      http://fashion.hellomagazine.com/fashion-news/201604154799/kate-middleton-entourage-hairdresser-stylist-bhutan/

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    3. anon 8:56- Chris Jackson is dating Tasha, a Kate assistant. Just as Rebecca
      and Miguel Head are a couple, I believe. Nice little get-away fir them too,
      although a busy one.

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    4. Thanks Cara, he has some interesting shots.

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  13. I just refreshed before heading to bed & Voila Today's Trek Post!:) What an Amazing day for W&K knowing how much they love the outdoors & are so physically fit! This is right in their Wheelhouse! Again, I Encourage You All to try to access the CNN program "The Wonder List" with Bill Weir, as he makes the Trek up to the Mountainside Monastery with his Guide & it's so cool!

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  14. Can I also say how thrilled I am to see W&K posing for photos:) It's been so nice to see that ever since the Red Carpet on the Gala Night of The Tour! They may not want to Resurrect the "Photo Calls" that Will had to endure growing up, but I really hope they start doing more of this back at home. It's so nice & I think it sets a nice tone with The Press.

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  15. Sharyn from AUS15 April 2016 at 09:19

    Is anyone else researching Bhutan as their next holiday destination? I know I am!

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    1. Expect $250+ per day hotel expenses in addition to several flights.Then daily expenses for purchases and guides and the like. In an attempt to guard against backpacking partying hordes which have "spoiled" other countries, the kingdom is open to travellers with deep pockets.

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    2. Philly it's not true you have to have very deep pockets. Just a tad deep. There are all sorts of price ranges available but yes, it is not a regular backpacking destination where you can budget $ a day. More like $$-$$$$.
      I would suggest combining it with a trip to India or Nepal and taking 3 to do the entire Himalayas.

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  16. Thanks, Charlotte! You're wicked fast. William and Kate look amazing after a 5-6 hour hike. Can't wait to see what she'll be wearing to the reception tonight. I hope they both get a lot of rest once they get back to their hotel before the reception.

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  17. nothing special about todays cloths but i do like her boots i think will could have won jeans. it was nice to see them with there arms around each other. it is so beaitful in those mountains,with the misty clouds covering parts of the mountains you can see how peacefull and sprituial it is i would love to see it myself. what a nice romantic spot for them. wow really fast today charlotte

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  18. hmm effortless beautiful she looks good and no sweat after all

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  19. Rebecca - Sweden15 April 2016 at 10:28

    Amazing and stunning pictures! They are such cutiepies, those two!! (Also, glad they didn't have company of the press the whole way. Would have been very hard to enjoy the trek while being photographed). Speaking of the press, nice to see that they accknowledged them :)

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  20. yes; yes; yes .... some of these photos are the best ever! Loving couple holding hands and sitting close to each other and just looking extremely happy together. So natural, Kate is herself and it is really breathtaking to see them interacting so heartfelt and loving...
    Here we can see that this is the real fairytale coming true and not a 19year old Diana marrying the hair to the throne! I am so curious about the Taj Mahal appearance but fear that the natural approach of Bhutan and the glow in the faces might be replaced by the more formal look again ... But seeing them on the photo spot over the monastery and holds hands means more...

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  21. Charlotte - Thank you for getting your post up so quickly! You do an amazing job. This is always my first stop with Kate related news.

    I like Kate's outfit for hiking. Both Kate and William look so relaxed. We will see what the look like after 6 hours of hiking. :)

    After this fast paced tour, I am amazed that they added this hike to their itinerary. It also shows their high fitness level.

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  22. She looks fab but an innocent question - do you think sometimes at occasion like this when she's literally hiking in the wild that she probably can do without the gold ear ring and her engagement ring? Feels a bit too dressy and unnecessary? Otherwise I love her relaxed look.

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden15 April 2016 at 14:12

      Hmmm.. I dont see why she should. I mean... earrings are jsut a standard thing people put in, and these seem her go to everyday pair. It's not like they're in the way and many people feel naked without having put on their earrings. Sometimes when running earrands in private or such she removes her engagement ring. But these are official occations with photos being taken. Imagine the commentary if she was without the ring!! Also, she probably likes it. I see it like this. Most people wear their rings and a pair of earrings everyday, day in and day out. Many people sleep in theirs. Kate's rings and go to earrings just happen to be a bit fancier than the rest of us can afford to have as our everyday stuff :P

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    2. Most women wear their engagement ring and wedding band every day of their married life.

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    3. I thought the same Denise but then I remembered what they said during the engagement interview four years ago--that William had carried it with him everywhere in Africa and she said she would keep it very safe. And he joked and said "She'd better!" I think the engagement ring has enormous significance for them both. As to earrings--sometimes I wear mine hiking and sometimes not. It just depends on how I am feeling.

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    4. She's fully dressed with jewelry because this is a working visit and she's on display. I would do the same if I were in her position. I highly doubt she'd look like that on a hike at home and I don't think she wears her engagement ring at home either. There have been several pap shots of her where she's clearly only wearing her wedding/anniversary rings.

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    5. I guess you're right, the engagement ring has such significance the media will be speculating nonsense if she's not wearing it at any time! But I guess for a normal person, we wouldn't wear such a big ruby diamond ring when we go hiking or meet children in an Indian slum. It's kind of common sense. :)

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    6. Tedi in California15 April 2016 at 16:16

      I wear my engagement and wedding ring 24/7.

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    7. I've long suspected she wears an imitation engagement ring (perhaps a real sapphire still, but not quite as valuable as Diana's) on engagements such as this one.

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    8. anon 10:29- you may have something.These images may be the real replacement in people's minds of the sad and lonely Diana/Taj photo-not any re-creation the
      couple may provide tomorrow.

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    9. I'm an earring gal and admit to always wearing them, even if it's a simple stud. As far as Kate's engagement ring is concerned, I would bet my last dollar that it is the one and only... This particular ring has an added layer of meaning to it and it would be completely lost if she didn't wear it, even at times like this.

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    10. I wear my rings and earrings every day. I would feel undressed no matter the activity without them.

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  23. I'm surprised by what both of them are wearing, but especially by Kate's boots. William at least has hiking boots on. In fact, of the three of them, Prince Charles seems most appropriately dressed. However, William and Kate look like they're comfortable so I suppose that's all that matters.

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  24. Haha her hair didn't even frizz! What a natural beauty. The boots must be lighter than they look.

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    1. Her hair stylist was one of many staff who joined them on the wall ;-) They're not even carrying water bottles so it's clear to me there were people helping them out. Meaning I thinking someone could be carrying a makup bag for touch ups before they re joined the press. And why not?!

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  25. Are they staying the night there? Having lunch there? Hiking down the mountain? Driving down the mountain?

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    1. good questions 11:10.

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  26. I'm certain I never look this good when I go hiking! Bless her. It looks like they had a wonderful day.

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    1. I kidding! She has super powers!

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    2. No kidding! I really don't know what is going on with my typing skills.

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  27. Sarah Maryland USA15 April 2016 at 11:29

    How in the world is she not sweating her butt off??? How can she looks this good after hours of hiking?
    So unfair lol

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden15 April 2016 at 14:13

      Might be that they stopped behind some bushes when they knew they were getting close to the press areas and used some blotting paper and fixed the hair and stuff :P

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    2. Her hair stylist and personal assistant were there. Thy aren't even carrying water bottles. Obviously there was behind the scenes freshening up - press said te royals were alone for 1hr before rejoining the press so tbh believe they caught their breath and freshened up. Fair enough, in my opinion. I also think Kate is more sporty and works out more than William.

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    3. Yeah I don't get it either. My hair is usually like a lion's mane by hour 4.

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    4. Sarah Maryland USA15 April 2016 at 19:05

      Unless I had a shower there was no way I would look that good after a 3 hour hike lol
      kudos to kate.

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  28. We the people of Bhutan have been really blest to have Your Royal Highness the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. We would like to thank yo so much for kindly choosing to visit us. This historic visit means a lot to us and our nation. We would like to wish you a long and healthy life...

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden15 April 2016 at 14:13

      How great to hear from someone from Bhutan :)

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    2. 11:30,

      Your "blest" is similar to the British "blest", "whilst". Do many people in Bhutan speak, read and write English? Is it taught in your schools?

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  29. Courtney, How are you doing?

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  30. I think she Looks stunning today. Much bettet than the Other days

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  31. Sarah from Calif.15 April 2016 at 12:21

    Fantastic pictures and scenery!

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  32. I enjoy hiking and I am sitting here feeling very envious of W&K (in the best possible way). The views are spectacular!

    And I also appreciate another dose of the chemistry between W&K. ;)

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    1. What you said royalfan. I don't particularly care for William but I am astonished when I read comments here and there that say that he doesn't love Kate or treats her badly and so on. It is clear he is besotted with her. People must have very different ideas of what a healthy relationship looks like.

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    2. Tedi in California15 April 2016 at 16:18

      It is delightful to see them so natural and loving together. Agree with you Royalfan ;)

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    3. Besotted is an excellent way of putting it, Lecia. And Tedi, it is indeed. :)

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  33. Lovey photos! The landscape is breathtaking and kate look very good. Her hair is perfect and her make up spot on.
    I am wondering, didn't Rebecca Deacon go on this tour? Someone know anything about it?
    MB

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    1. She's there! There was a picture of her at the archery demonstration sitting behind Kate yesterday.

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    2. Rebecca - Sweden15 April 2016 at 14:14

      I've seen Rebecca from time to time. On the Safari, meeting the King and Queen etc. I think she and the second assistant have been tag teaming it :)

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    3. She was on the far left upper corner in one of the archery photos, 12:29.

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    4. Oh! I missed it. I saw it now. Thx

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  34. Thanks Charlotte again, I hope you're getting some rests in between all these posts. Nearly there!

    They seem to be so more relaxed this tour and the look between them is fantastic - it's truly a couple deeply in love which is magical to watch. Even the fact that they are stopping for photo ops and smiling and chatting to the Press. Can't help wondering now what effect meeting with King Jigme has had and if they've seen the way that has got to grips with connecting with his country and people too, in what seems to be a marvellous way. I suppose it can only help having another young couple in the similar position to chat and talk too.

    Watching the UK TV press focus yesterday - it was all a little negative about why they should be spending so much time here within the tour - which was odd I thought when it must be such an interesting and blossoming pace to go to and have so much for potential.

    On the fashion front - I thought the boots an odd choice at first but seeing that she's not breaking a sweat, she must have found the walk more comfortable than originally described, or she's just fit as a fiddle chasing after little George! just lovely to see them relaxed and having a bit of spiritual time together.

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    1. Yes it is surprising that they are spending one-third of their time in a tiny kingdom which is not part of the commonwealth even. It seems to be bringing a great deal of attention to Bhutan, not sure what it is doing for the UK. It might just be a diplomatic move to highlight Bhutan's strengths.

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    2. Lecia 15:43- "Location Location Location. Very strategic.

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  35. She looks just wonderful! The outdoors suit her so much!

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  36. Is this only new for me that they show their affection in front of the press in that lovely way? You have to be happy too, when you watch these pictures.

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  37. Courtney H Providence Village, Texas15 April 2016 at 13:13

    What a great experience for them, Royaly or not. :)I'll bet it was beautiful!!

    I'm starting to think Kate has a lot less confidence than I thought. The video where they're speaking with press...It's like their engagement interview to me. Seemingly shy but that's not it. It's like she's full of thoughts and things she wants to say but she holds back. Always looking to William for something. Not sure what though. Approval? A face of him showing happiness from her statement or distaste in it? Maybe her eyes just fall to him when talking because she doesn't want to seem like she's over shadowing him, taking his limelight from him at all...? I don't know! She has such a needing smile when she starts a thought and begins talking that she seems to reign it in during the statement leaving the end of the sentence with a subdued appearance. Does this make sense?? Lol! Maybe I'm the only one who sees it ;) Let it out girl! Smile! Laugh! Say what you're thinking (within reason lol). You don't actually need William to speak or show people you are your own person! :))

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    1. Rebecca - Sweden15 April 2016 at 14:21

      I just think she's not very comfortable in her speaking role yet. She is aware that every little word she utters will be twisted and turned and overanalyzed and brought up in the future. That would make anyone nervous. So since William and Kate are each others supporters, it's not odd that she looks at him for affirmation that she's doing good. It's very natural I think. She also has a rather mild voice to start with (as told by people who has met her more one on one in walkabouts) so that contributes to her words sounding a bit "swallowed". I do think there is a huge improvement from the engagement interview in that she stands and speak more freely and longer (and doesn't mumble away) but her voice and confidence is still lacking. But her video recorded messages are way better than in the beginning, she has done way better speeches than her first ones, she has done her first interview on tv, and she does these things. She is growing, maybe slower than some might like but appearantly this is one of her weaker points so ofc it's gonna take longer to get better in it. At least she did it! :)

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    2. Really think this is an over exaggeration. When she is asked the direct question she speaks without looking at him. However when they both asked a general question, she is no doubt going to defer to him. Also notice when the general question is asked, he looks towards her as well.
      If you look at the newspaper headlines this week, William hardly appears in any of the pictures, it all Catherine. She is smart in knowing when it is time for him to have the spotlight. She cannot control what pictures are printed, but she knows this interview will be shown. It obviously works for them, because their interaction is fantastic and very appealing to most. William is the heir to the throne and she is his supporter.

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    3. Robert Jobson has written, I think, a very good commentary piece today in Standard News "A royal display of love, duty and diplomacy by William and Kate". Could not post the link, but it is well worth a read from a seasoned reporter.

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    4. Couldn't agree more. Kate seems terrified to make a mistake. Diana wasn't afraid. And she did indeed make some mistakes - some real doosies! But loved her all more for them!

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    5. I agree! I often find it difficult to understand what Kate is saying because of her nervousness (no judgments, I'd be the same!).

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    6. I agree! Reminded me of the engagement interview (5.5yrs ago!) and she does seem to want to chat more but holds back. Maybe it's because she knew William wanted it to be a super quick "interview"?? But yes I think she's good at playing the game, but lacks confidence. Even when I hear her chatting at engagements she is a bit awkward - the quotes always sound so much better then when she actually said it. She's got a lot of learning to do in this regard which is one reason I think she needs to work more - practice practice.

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    7. I think it's because there's always in very real worry she might say something...anything...that the press would report that might be awkward or misconstrued! Everything she utters is dissected, critiqued and analyzed. I would expect she looks to William because he has had a lifetime of experience in that situation. I can't imagine how stressful it must be. I would be worried about saying anything too!

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    8. Ha ha, Courtney. Yes she is quite a wallflower when William is around isn't she. I think that many people have commented along your lines. I don't get it either. Ditto to what you said.

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    9. Tedi in California15 April 2016 at 16:21

      I don't agree at all. She was very charming, and natural.

      Delete
    10. Anonymous in Colorado15 April 2016 at 16:54

      From what William has revealed, Catherine can be quite feisty & competitive in private. She seems like a very calm, even-keeled, quiet soul overall who would rather not get noticed. The press I am sure is intimidating. Can you really blame her for the nerves....I mean the press can be brutal, twisting her every word & movement. Like her unpolished toes for goodness sake!

      Delete
    11. Today when she said it was a great way to work off the curry some reports commented that she was just thinking of herself as usual. So if that's how your comments are going to be reported I wouldn't want to say anything either. I'm sorry, but the press can be real jerks. Not all of them of course, but too many in my view.

      I also read Robert Jobson's article and he strikes me as one very astute journalist who is at least trying to understand William.

      Overall though, I too hope that this tour has the added bonus of creating a new peace between these two and the press. The poll about the monarchy released today in Briitain indicates that British Monarchy is more popular than ever, so best to find a way to work together.

      Delete
    12. Tedi in California15 April 2016 at 18:05

      Thanks to Anon 14:52, I read the insightful Robert Jobson article in the ES.

      Delete
    13. I agree Courtney. I think hardly anything changed about her and her ability to speak in public since the engagement. I am not sure, she has enough thoughts and ideas to share. I think that is exactly the reason why she needs support from William because she has no clue what to say and moreover when.

      One day she will be queen....

      Delete
    14. Maggie - Minneapolis15 April 2016 at 21:19

      Intense scrutiny based on your words and actions is something every public figure has to face. Would we be saying "well I can't blame them" if this was the First Lady or the Prime Minister who showed hesitation at saying things in public? And those are people who actually face way more hate and criticism than Kate does. Until very recently, Kate has been treated quite well by the media.

      Delete
    15. 14:34, I think you are exactly right. I also agree with the posters who point out how the simplest statement could be twisted and used against her. I honestly fail to see the nervousness some speak of; she appears to be a very grounded and confident young woman.

      Delete
  38. These are just beautiful photographs, so natural. I have no doubt one or two will be framed and on display at home as soon as they get back!

    Fantastic that they spoke to the press for a moment, fantastic! See, how hard is that? It was less than a minute, it may not have even been 30 seconds, such a simple, brief move that makes an enormous difference. That's all the press is looking for. It's why it's so baffling that they haven't been doing it, and comes off as a bit bizarre frankly. One or two comments can really take coverage to another level, it's a terrific PR move, not to mention just basic manners.

    Maybe this trek will have been a bonding moment for them all and things will be different at home from here on, fingers crossed :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rebecca - Sweden15 April 2016 at 14:22

      I really, really hope this is a sign of future press handling from their side. Not to stop and pose at every engagement ofc, and not give interview at every engagement either. But just a more general accknowledgement of the media.

      Delete
    2. The video I saw was 1m09s and they answered the last question while walking away. Definitely not hard to do that, and it has a hugely positive impact with the press and fans!

      Delete
    3. I love that they spoke to the press too but you have to remember that there is a precedent before them and it can hardly be right if they do it all the time while others before them - the Queen and Charles - don't do it. But them acknowledging the press is a good step forward.

      Delete
    4. But Charles does occasionally speak with reporters. He certainly acknowledges them, even if he doesn't like them all. Camilla is friendly with the press and is fairly media savvy. Sadly, this little interview was not about thawing relations, it was a compromise for further privacy. Check out the comments from royal reporters on their Twitter feeds.

      Delete
    5. They don't do it back home because they aren't on a mountaintop in an isolated
      area in a closed-off kingdom. Pretty challenging for terrorists or assassins, I would say.
      Do we know exactly which photographers were involved? Chris Jackson, for one.
      As another commenter said, maybe the press needs to work on its attitude toward
      the Cambridges. They have reached out; it remains to be seen how the reporters respond.

      Delete
    6. They acknowledged the media many times during this trip. It is a positive step. Sadly the media is insatiable. No one can get everything they want on tour especially of a press this size. But even Richard Palmer a very critical eye acknowledged that William and Kate have been obliging, more relaxed and more engaged with the media.

      Delete
  39. Beautiful! This must have been a strenuous but fulfilling effort and one that Prince Charles recommended. Kate's outfit may be my favorite of the entire trip. Perfect layers and wonderful boots. I am also glad for their moments with the press.

    Is this the same monastery to which the king hiked with a large sandalwood box on his back? Or is that a lower one?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha! Yes, Anon 13:35! I'm so glad I'm not the only one who thought that this outfit of Kate's was the best of the whole tour! I felt silly saying it after all the beautiful outfits she has worn but I can't help it, this one just brings out the old Kate Middleton look that I have always loved and we don't see Kate this relaxed that often anymore. Love it! And seriously, how cute are these two together?! My favorite pic of them of all time is the one with their arms around each other where Kate's ring hand is on her hip. They are adorable!

      Delete
  40. They both look fantastic, happy and refreshed! If they did actually complete the entire hike on foot I'm impressed, because if I hiked that long I would be a sweaty mess!

    Thanks for updating so quickly this morning, Charlotte!

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  41. Breathtaking location!
    I really love how down-to-earth and athletic they both are. Queen Mary would probably take issue with Kate because she isn't always dripping in jewels though lol

    ReplyDelete
  42. Any idea why the media werent allowed at the top? Was it a religious thing? Did they not want cameras at the monastery?
    But I have to add Bravo will and kate for talking to the media today! I think maybe they are trying to bring back better relations with them! It certainly seems so on this trip so I hope they keep it back up in the Uk!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is rhe most sacred site in Buthan. Therefore they did mot want thebusy press in there.

      Delete
    2. According to reporters, there was initially supposed to be press with them to the top (King of Bhutan had no objections), but the couple wanted it to be private. Press objected and a deal was struck for the couple to do the short interview when they came back down in exchange for privacy. The revelation of the circumstances of the interview makes me a bit sad. They only spoke for a couple minutes and that was a negotiated compromise. I much preferred thinking that they simply agreed to give the press a couple minutes of their time.

      Delete
    3. Press was at the top. EmilyAndrews got the rota. It's the tv broadcasters who were complaining.

      Delete
    4. It is a sacred site. No other press in the world had gone in the monastery. As visitors, they had to be mindful of that. MusingLen, no one said press were ever told they could go to the monastery. In fact an article a day before said press was not allowed because it was a holy place and should remain peaceful.

      Delete
    5. Thank you for pointing that out, Sammy.

      W&K have been generous with the media on this tour. But it's also important for them to respect their hosts and allow coverage without turning it into a circus.

      Delete
    6. Len 20:24- It wasn't "reporterS." It was ONE on his Twitter account in an
      unvarified report from KP and the King. It was laden with "tax-payer funded"
      references and later picked up by other sources. But it started with him.
      Apparently, he was upset at not being chosen the rota for the PA.Similar to his "expectations" tweet in that there was absolutely no verifiable basis for his
      statements.

      Delete
  43. Love her boots, I love them in the chocolate suede too. I like the blouse, I don't like the vest at all.

    I have to admit, they aren't a couple to show loads of affection in public, while I do think some is sincere, I can't help but thinking a lot of it is forced for the cameras. Considering Williams's parents trip to this location. I can't help but think this was told it would be a good idea and suggested by the their pr staff. Especially since like I said, they don't normally shoe this much affection in public ever. Even at their wedding.

    I'm glad they talked to the press. To be honest sometimes I think they're quite rude to press. Especially "high up" or more "important press" it doesn't hurt them to wave in their direction once and a while, so I'm glad they spoke to them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Diana was never there. She was dead when Prince Charles visited.

      Delete
    2. William and Kate are very much the real deal. Sorry to let you down on that one. Lol.

      Delete
  44. I wonder how all the different clothing and luggage are managed on a trip as varied as this one has been. Is it possible that once things have been worn, they are packed up and sent to the airport or even home? All the outfits from India surely did not accompany the group to Bhutan! There must be a way of efficienly managing all of this, and it would be very interesting to know how it is done. Possible post-trip post?

    ReplyDelete
  45. hmm yes I think prince Charles recommended the outfit I love im quite surprise they give a interview they looks relax

    ReplyDelete
  46. It is this dress for the reception: http://www.beulahlondon.com/shop/online-shop/dresses/juliet-108

    ReplyDelete
  47. This might be my favorite outfit of the trip, Simple, so well put together, and totally appropriate and comfortable looking. I especially liked the blouse and am seriously thinking of buying it.
    The Daily Mail currently has a story about Drew Barrymore who is wearing the same dress Kate wore to dinner with the King and Queen. While Drew looks nice, Kate definitely wore it better.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Amazing photos from this engagement. I think she could have walked all day. I want her secret. Great outfit! Great for a hike but looks pulled together at the same time. I love how the vest nips her waist in. Not that she needs it but it gave her a nice shape. I had to chuckle at the photo of her hairdresser, secretary and assistant. There were the ubiquitous striped tops while the hair stylist was sporting biker jeans similar to Kate's. I'm assuming the trio is responsible for Kate's public clothing choices.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would love to hear what brands Ms. Tucker and the secretary and assistant are wearing (in particular, their pants). Does anyone know? A whole post on their tour of India/Bhutan (as well as Rebecca Deacon's, who indeed has been noticeably absent from many photo ops), with sartorial choices, would be greatly enjoyed.
      Congratulations on the fabulous coverage! I know I can count on your site every day for all the details of this amazing tour.

      Delete
  49. Looking at these pictures I get a great sense of the loving marriage that they have built together. It is really nice to see how much in love they continue to be. That will serve them well later in life.

    The pictures of the hike, scenery, and W&K are stunning. I agree with everyone else that these are some of the best pictures of the tour. I love her outfit today and seems really a great choice for the activity. I am in awe of how good both of them looked throughout the hike. I have definitely added Bhutan to my travel bucket list and work on fitness to my daily to do list.

    I love that they talked to the journalist. I wonder the journalist decided how far up they would all go. Did they say you and you go up to the top for pictures, you and you go half way, you and you go to the overlook, you and you go up with them, etc. All of the pictures throughout the hike looked really coordinated. I also liked that they bought something after the hike. I look forward to Kate wearing those earrings on future engagements.

    I do hope they come back with G&C. That would be an amazing experience.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Victoria from North Carolina15 April 2016 at 15:26

    Great hike. William and Kate look so cute together. They still have that sparkle in their eyes after a decade of being together. I always think that the best marriage is one that start out when the couple are goods friends. And you can really tell that William and Kate are best friends. I do have one question though, does anyone know what Kate said when talking about someone holding their baby while going up the mountain? I couldn't make out exactly what she said. Also does anyone know if Harry is still on his tour of India? The media didn't really follow his trip as much.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Catherine shared they met a family carrying their baby in front. Harry is back from Mepal, never was in India.

      Delete
  51. Barely managed to catch up with all the great posts and comments ! So many posts - Wow Charlotte !!
    What a wonderful tour this has been. This day would probably be my favorite if I were in their shoes.
    We are big hikers in our family and I grew up hiking a lot. I am especially envious of Kate right this minute because we my husband and I were supposed to go to Bhutan 7 years ago but due to a (false) family emergency we ended up canceling the trip. We have regretted it ever since because we never got the opportunity to go after that and probably won't until our kids are teenagers. The hiking in Bhutan is out of the world. We had a 3 day hike booked with deposit paid, route chartered, guide picked out and all that.. Sigh and tear !
    Anyway, it is wonderful to see it vicariously through Kate. I was also really happy to see the obviously loving dynamic they have. It is not surprising because they have such great support systems in place. They probably did not go through the inevitable shakeup and crises that almost all marriages go through after the arrival of the second child when both partners have full-time careers. And Kate is in wonderful shape. I never really lost a teeny tiny part of my belly after my second one. I can hide it well enough but hers looks non-existent. I wonder whether she really doesn't have it or she keeps it really well hidden.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Some very good comments here! I agree that this trip may have been a healing one for William in many ways. In another interview I watched a few days ago--the one where he talked about being a father--he said that being a Royal is hard for him, headstrong as he is, but he was grateful for wise advisors (probably the Queen and Prince Charles) who guided him on what he could and could not do. This is truly a "modern" Royal tour. Avoiding the areas where he and Kate would be sitting ducks for terrorists (and thus also relieving their host country of a lot of worry), showing respect for those countries in highlighting the areas where they either truly need help (humanitarian aid) or deserve some notice like Bhutan and their "Happiness Index" and a king who welcomes his subjects into his cottage to talk about issues. I dream that William and the King of Bhutan spoke at length about how to handle the "royalty" issue. Even though Bhutan is so much smaller, the King is familiar with the UK (he graduated from Oxford after all) and would probably have some wise advice on being modern and also traditional. This trip has been totally wonderful and I hope that the Press, too, have learned a lesson about how to have a good relationship with W & K. Although, sadly, I see that in the British press they haven't.

    ReplyDelete
  53. This is my personal favorite day of the tour. I love Kate's look, the fact that they were relaxed, acted like a real couple and spoke to the press - little things that go a long way. Perhaps the Bhutanese happiness is infectious? ;-) Plus, I'm incredibly jealous of this experience. Many of my most cherished memories are from the tops of mountains. I rarely feel more at peace.

    I'm feeling a bit renewed in my interest in Kate. She's been so buttoned up - in clothing and demeanor - I couldn't relate anymore. I really like her clothing from this tour. Most of it I would want in my own wardrobe, which hasn't been the case for several years. And the latest Beulah dress...gorgeous!

    ReplyDelete
  54. Did they hike back down too?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes. I guess it's 3 hours up and 3 hours down.=)

      Delete
    2. 16:07, I ask the same question. Was it 6 hours round trip or 6 hours each way?

      They must have had quite a LARGE caravan with them. The horses that accompanied them, sent by the king, the media, Kate's "support" team. They had to have had some food and water available and lots of it, security personnel, perhaps a medic, a guide from the king's office. It would be fun to see photos of all that. Has anything been written/reported about all of that?

      I am hoping Kate will wear bright colors for the Taj Mahal. If Diana had worn neutrals the photo would not have had as much import. As it was, with the bright colors, it was perfect and became Iconic. I am happy to know they having talking with George all along. I loved Kate's outfit. Very Kate Middleton.

      She wasn't carrying the scarf she appears in in one photo so the girls must have been close by. It was colder at the top of the mountain no doubt. Where was Becca. She wasn't hanging out with the girls.

      Would love to see photos of the caravan.

      Bhutan has great landscape but I am more of an open spaces and lots of beaches kind of girl. I think I would get claustrophobic with all the Himilayas around and no easy in and out of the country. No offense. That's just my preference.

      As usual Charlotte, excellent coverage. The gold standard of coverage in my opinion.

      Delete
    3. The elevation gained was only 1500 ft which is quite low for the Himalayas. Just to give you an idea, the steepest mountains in the Adirondacks area an elevation of 1500 ft will take a fit hiker between 1-1.5 hours to gain. From what I have read and seen about the gradient this trail was not exactly very steep. I would estimate that it would take them around 1.5 hours to get to the top and another 45 min. to get down. This trail would most definitely be classified as an easy hike for seasoned hikers like Kate, but probably moderate for first or second timers.
      The press is playing up the difficulty of the hike.

      Delete
    4. Maggie - Minneapolis15 April 2016 at 21:16

      It was 6 hours roundtrip, and actually that is about the max length of time the trip is supposed to take - apparently the fastest someone has gone up (so just one way) is 1.5 hours, and the slowest was 3 hours by an 80 year old.

      Delete
    5. Source for stats, Maggie?

      Delete
  55. The isolated retreat of the very surrounding seems suitable for the monks’ lives. After this wonderful experience, the tour will head back to the “city”? For a country of 750,000 population and minimal security issues, where are the crowds and day to day life of the city?

    ReplyDelete
  56. Absolutely chic! Kate chose smart layers which all look fabulous in the variety of photos. Vest on, vest off and with her scarf added. Even though there are so many photos - meaning press were there throughout - I would hope that they enjoyed some private time. Chatting about what they've seen, what they've been experiencing, people they've met. It's really a beautiful hike, I wonder if anyone visiting Bhutan can make the hike.

    How much time will they have to get ready for the reception tonight?

    Non stop this tour has been for the royal couple. And of course for you Charlotte as well.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Beautiful photography which can make it to National Geography and Sports magazines. The couple is glowing and posing well, of course with heart warming chemistry of love and care. This is also a good tribute for the country in travel magazines and tourism.
    --
    I wonder if communication to their toddler and one year old through Skype makes children miss them more or comfort them. For parents it can be reassuring. A one year old might get confused why she can't hug them. A toddler may be ask a lot of questions.

    Charlotte,
    It is good you posted commentary of the journalists who are with them. A lot of the tour had been a delight experienced visually, and much less in sound/vocal. As it is moving on fast, may be I have missed the sound and vocal parts. William's speech at Q EII's birthday is one vocal I remember. One can imagine his boss's approval and joy.

    ReplyDelete
  58. It looks like William is carrying a wallet or a cellphone in his back pocket. Do they usually carry stuff like that around with them? Just curious, does anyone know?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I noticed too. It seems that helps them to keep up with their kids.

      Delete
  59. Anonymous in Colorado15 April 2016 at 16:46

    These two bring joyful tears to my eyes. So happy that they have each other! The serenity of Bhutan is magical.

    ReplyDelete
  60. Tick offs after day 1-5 and hiking on day 6:

    1 Catherine Walker / x McQueen / 1 Beulah / 1 Saloni or Erdem
    xxx?x x?x?x ?xx nod to India / xx? to Bhutan / (x) to Diana / 1 to the Queen
    xxxxx xx fashionable / xxx classic / x simple / xxxx (chic) casual
    xxx about knee-length / xx long / xxxxx midi/maxi / xxx floor-length / ++
    xxxxx xxx?xx xx new / ?x(x)x repeat / (xxxx) bespoke / (xxxxx xxxxx xx) off the peg+
    xxxxx xxxxx love/like it / xxxxx interesting / 1 growing on me / 1 divisive
    ?xxxx xxxx dress / ?xx (suit) / xx gown / xx pair of trousers
    xxxxx high heels / xx flats / xxx sandals / x boots / +++ / ?
    xxx up do / xxxx half-up / xxxxx xxxx down / 1 ponytail
    xxxxx xxxx jewelry repeat / 1 borrowed / xxxxx whow/new / (x) simple / ?

    bonus:

    x very good blend with colours of floor, surroundings, offered shawls - 1,4,7,9,10,12,13,15
    x literally local designer – 2,13
    x beautiful blend of feminine and (ethnic) chic casual - 2,(6),8,9,10
    x beautiful wedges - 2,8,10
    x very affordable earrings - 2,6,10
    x parallels between pre-tour reception and dress - 2,7,10,13?
    x Jenny Packham - 3 / Emilia Wickstead - 4,12 / Temperley - 5,7
    x excellent craftsmanship/standard - 3,7,13?,15
    x (multiple) symbolism/allusions - 2,4,6,7?,8,9, 12,13,14,15
    x new designer/label - 6,8,9,13

    xx no watch - 1,2,(3),4,5,(6),7,8,9,10,11,?,13,14,15
    (slowly but steadily increasing quality of the up dos - 3,7,10)
    x very honorable mention - The Duke of C - 2,3,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,15

    :)

    ReplyDelete
  61. Ok I just listened to the brief interview. It was about time for heavens sake. Good answers from both of them especially William who did more of the talking. It is a glimpse into an accent of their looks.

    ReplyDelete
  62. By far my most favorite part of the tour. Loved the hike, their affectionate display for each other, and their interaction and joking with the media (did you take a donkey? comment was funny). At first I thought her boots were too much about fashion but then realized that not only are the soles durable with a good grip, but the hike is civilized with clearly marked out paths--not a wild hike in unmarked areas--clearly made to be smooth for all sorts of visitors. Therefore I see why she picked those boots. Someone ended up holding her scarf and vest. Also, I'm glad her staff could join them to enjoy it as well. I really don't think Kate worries about her looks and photo ops as much as some suggest. Will was sweating but she looked cool. I wondered if he was holding her phone or was that his? lol I am surprised she didn't bring her camera with her unless whoever was holding her stuff also held it for her?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Probably the donkey held her stuff?? :-)

      Delete
    2. most likely.

      Delete
  63. I'm also glad they bought souvenirs at the bottom of the mountain. =)

    ReplyDelete
  64. It's so lovely to see them interacting with the press! I hope it will not completely stop at the end of the tour. It's also wonderful to see them so happy together, especially ahead of tomorrow's Taj Mahal visit and the memory of Diana alone there at the forefront.

    ReplyDelete
  65. I feel like Kate looked a little pirate-ish when she was wearing the vest. The slightly billowy sleeve of the white shirt, the vest, the tall boots and the loose slightly wavy hair just screamed pirate to me.

    Much preferred the outfit when she took the vest off.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was thinking exactly along the same lines only I was thinking of Peter Pan. The outfit looked much better without the vest.

      Delete
  66. This is my favourite looks from the whole tour! I wouldn't have guessed that I would say that. There is not one single thing I would tweak, as in every other outfit she has worn. I would love to buy that vest:) The whole look is so Kate; it uniformly flows well. . .Yeah!
    Charlotte thank you for all the hard work you have done. You have provided many people with such pleasure and joy. :)
    Regarding the Buddhist blessing. I know some of this was discussed yesterday, but I thought I would weigh in. As a contemporary of Kate, and a fellow Anglican, I am at a loss as to their choices in participating in other religious rituals. Phrases that attending reporters have used in the last two days are "received a blessing" "prayed for by the chanting nuns", etc
    A spiritual blessing is not benign (ask the dedicated monks); it invokes spirituality. So saying, it matters not, is not accurate Now let me clear: As someone said, there is a difference between observing, learning, being educated, appreciating, and visiting other religious sites--and participating in a ritual or willing receiving a blessing. But to engage or participate in a spiritual ritual other than their alleged (voluntarily) faith speaks of a facade. Catherine was confirmed shortly before she married William and in her confirmation made a commitment be a disciple of Christ. The palace assured the public this was not because she was under pressure (inferencing the holy communion she would take at her wedding), but because of her own inner commitment.
    If you look at the confirmation vows (do your research) you will understand how receiving Buddhist blessings is a a contradiction to their alleged faith. Christianity, like a number of other world religions is monotheistic. . Anyone rooted in Judeo Christianity understands " there shall be no other god before me" "I am a jealous God" "dear children keep yourself from idols".
    My heart breaks because authenticity is what this world craves, and needs. If a discipled life to Christ is authentically not them, then it would be better not to live a facade or pretend.
    I totally understand that the Commonwealth (as someone pointed out) is multi-religious and that any leader of the Commonwealth will have to be educated in other religions and have an appreciation. My point is that William and Kate made a personal voluntary commitment to NOT be multi-religious (even though they can love and appreciate those with other religious beliefs).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. well said Anonymous!! I am not a Christian but still once in a while i like to go to the church and experience the peace. I follow both Hindu and Buddhist rituals but I respect all religions. Next I want to go to a mosque and experience their tradition too.

      In this day and age, we have to respect who people are what they want to learn and experience regardless of whether they follow any religion or no religion.

      Delete
    2. Well said. I agree completely!

      Delete
    3. Annette New Zealand15 April 2016 at 18:26

      Couldn't disagree more. Buddhism has lots of similar ideas to Christanity and we need to respect each others faiths especially in a world where religion can cause such terrible divisions, so praying together is a great idea. I am Catholic and we have a NZ interfaith committee which includes not just the Abrahamic faiths but also Buddhists etc. I understand the Prince of Wales has said he wants to be a defender of all faiths not just the Anglican one. I thoroughly agree with his idea.

      Delete
    4. Thankfully, they are practicing open-mindedness and acceptance. They are non-judgmental. They are being respectful of their hosts.

      Delete
    5. Here is an alternative view of the religious controversy. If you were visiting someone you wanted to improve your relationship with, and that person wanted to give you a gift that was personally significant and valuable so that you would understand how much they were willing to invest in the relationship, surely you would accept the gift? William and Kate were recipients of a rite of religious significance that was not part of their religion, and as recipients they were not performing any sort of rite in a tradition that is not theirs. There is a difference between receiving a blessing from someone whose religion is different from yours, and practicing that religion. Instead of a betrayal of Christianity, perhaps this was practicing the "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" rule. Hope that helps the Christian folks who are fearful to feel a little better? Anyway, let's let it be between them and their god.

      Delete
    6. Anon 17:44, I did make a comment regarding this subject in the former thread but I will give a much shorter one here. The Buddhist religion does not have a god or
      many gods. The idea of a deity or idolatry goes against the basis of the entire religious . A blessing is just a blessing. Not a ritual. It was a symbolic honor bestowed on them and nothing more. It does not make them multi religious or any less Anglican but it did show respect for a culture and religion different from their own.

      Delete
    7. I do not understand why you are taking issue of them getting a blessing in the Buddhist Temple. You can go into any church and get a blessing. You are not saying you are going to practice the faith.
      You are making more out of this then need be. And I do not think religion should be part of the blog. It can open up a whole different can of worms.
      So I ask Charlotte to not allow this subject be talked about.

      Delete
    8. Maggie - Minneapolis15 April 2016 at 21:14

      Receiving a blessing from a religion that you do not practice is not inauthentic - it's an acknowledgment that while you may not believe in the same things as the person administering the blessing, you appreciate the sign of respect that they are showing you by giving you the blessing.

      Delete
    9. I really don't see the problem with them receiving a Buddhist blessing. I was brought up in the church of England, christened and confirmed. I attended a Sikh friend's wedding and was happy to participate in the sharing of a symbolic piece of food as part of the ceremony.

      Delete
    10. Please please please can we leave this discusion here. Comments have been made on media reports which may or may not be accurate and hinge on a reporters choice of word. I would absolutely hate for this wonderful week to end in an acrimonious discussion because the divide of strong opinion will be massive. Please let us all leave this alone. This comment is not directed for or against anyone's post and not indicative of my views. I just don't want a heated discusion that goes on and on and gets a life of its own and drowns out the enjoyment that we have all had from this week.

      Delete
    11. I did not intend to comment when I first read your post. But it's been hours and it's sitting poorly on me. I am sure you meant it in good faith (no pun intended). But I don't see that accepting a blessing no matter the origin of faith violates any commitments of faith or allegience to a church or catechism. To the contrary, I find it respectful. And to intimate that W&C have broken with their vows to not be multi-religious is unfair. They are not worshiping. And in many parts of the world and the Commonwealth, it is impossible to parse out religion and culture. Sorry that your heart breaks but I find your position so invalidating.

      Delete
    12. Pauline, I agree with you! :)

      Delete
    13. I wanted to write some answer to Anon 17:44, but then I let it drop for the reasons Pauline expresses so well. Let God to God. And try to be free in your heart, as God is larger than our tiny minds. Don't judge, and you will not be judged: who said those words (which I am badly translating from the Italian translation from ancient Greek)?

      Delete
    14. http://hrhduchesskate.blogspot.com/2016/04/kate-in-bhutanese-kira-inspired-look-to.html

      If only religion did not come up on the previous blog any ways, but the fact is, it seems unavoidable. 17:44's comment is in reaction to the previous blog/see link above. Many people who may not necessarily post comments here can understand 17:44. It is typical of religion discussion. Once it is started,difficult to leave alone.

      This is a couple the world observes. Some people think whatever they do can be acceptable, but there is a fine line. As a Christian of a specific denomination, burning a candle as an offering during the liturgy is because one also believes and acknowledges the prayer and doctrine of one’s baptismal faith. It is different from going to a church, or be anywhere, and burn a candle in a private prayer.

      There are different branches of Buddhism. It all depends who the prayer and the candle burning is offered to. At times, Buddhism sounds like a philosophy, a way of belief/life, enlighten and a strive towards the good. If the chanting is for deities and their liturgy is acknowledging the same, in any religion, another faith should not burn a candle as an offering during the ritual. The existence of God is questionable in some branches of Buddhism. If they burn candles to receive blessing for well wishes, and not as an offering, I think it is solidarity of humanity. For observers, it can be confusing. Bhutan itself has only 5% Christians and there is restriction on them not to convert its citizens to their religion.

      Interfaith prayer in brotherhood of humanity is obviously different from burning candles as an offering for worship during liturgy.

      Delete
  67. I have these boots in suede and they are super comfortable but i doubt i can walk three hours in them. Kudos to the duchess for being brave!

    They identified the gold disc earrings and it's from BRORA. I just ordered with my aunt to have an exact pair made in 22 karat gold in Nepal at a Goldsmith's place. I will share with Charlotte once they arrive in four weeks.

    Looks like the three other assistants love Zara too as their pants look like Zara to me.

    So sad that they tour is almost over but Charlotte you did an amazing job! kudos!

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  68. Tedi in California15 April 2016 at 18:17

    As I see it this is what is wrong in our world. To infer that one's God or belief is better than another's is ridiculous. To receive a blessing from a holy man, no matter their religion is an honor. Imagine the future King and Queen refusing a blessing, because it conflicts with their God. We are in this horrific war with ISIS and the like because of religious intolerance. Let people worship who they want, just don't inflict your beliefs on others.

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  69. Sara from Canada15 April 2016 at 18:37

    Hi Charlotte: Those actually aren't the same boots she wore in front of the castle (the pic that is over a decade old). If you see a picture of them that includes the heel, you will notice the heel is completely flat, i.e. no ridges in the heel. The flat heeled boot is from Really Wild Clothing (suede riding boots). She was also pictured with the RWC boots in 2013 while shopping.

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  70. Thanks Charlotte, great coverage! I don't know much about gala's but I do know about hiking and this outfit is truly strange. High fur-lined leather boots? What about some hikers. Skinny jeans? C'mon there are many sharp hiking pants. The leather vest was ridiculous, it didn't serve any purpose. The linen shirt was a good choice. It wasn't a fashion shoot. It was a six hour hike. Makes me really question the DofC. I thought she was a bit more aware and outdoorsy but maybe not so much. Really Prince William is better dressed for a hike (barely). But I love them anyway :).

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    Replies
    1. There are just about as many different Hiking looks as there are Hikers:) This look is how we dress when we hike in the Alps. Back home in the USA, it might be hiking boots & shorts for Colorado, Jeans & rubber based boots for the Appalachian Trail etc. All that matters is that you are comfortable & like what you wear. Seems like she did just that.

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  71. I find her boots odd for hiking, however in looking at the lightweight running shoes some of the other ladies are wearing I am left to believe while the hike is not short it is an easy well maintained trail, so no need for a hiking boot. I still would find a knee high boot too warm for hiking. She looks great in her casual clothes. What a gorgeous setting and glad they had good weather for the hike. ali

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  72. Alejandra Ramírez15 April 2016 at 20:20

    Super Mega Excellent post! One of your best yet!
    Thank you for compilling the amazing collection of photos and information!
    Truly one of my favorite days in all Royal Watching History! :D
    Thank you so much for the hard work!

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  73. Kate, Texas, USA15 April 2016 at 21:54

    Oh wow.... What an incredibly beautiful day. Every aspect of the day just beautiful. The scenery is amazing! I can't imagine what it looks like in person if it looks this amazing in pictures. I can just imagine the air being so fresh and crisp. The mountains are so majestic and magnificent. God's creation is just breathtaking and I am thankful they got to experience an incredible part of it today.

    The love between them is real and palpable. The affection, friendship, and happiness shown today makes my heart happy for them, for George and Charlotte, and for the Royal family. While we all love some royal PDA and everyone loves a good photo op, I think the affection and love shown between Will and Kate today is true and not really for anyone else's benefit but theirs. Something about this engagement seemed different in a great way. It's been a very successful tour and today they had an opportunity to enjoy each other, focus on each other, and relax a bit. Today produced some fabulous photos that will be viewed for years to come, not just for the public, but in their home and family albums too.

    Kate looked fabulous for a 6 hour hike! Her attire was very chic and very Kate. Charlotte, I love that you included the picture of her outside Blenheim Palace. It is one of my very favorite photos! If I had just taken a 6 hour trek through the mountains, I definitely would not look like Kate...LOL!!! She's beautiful, absolutely beautiful! :)

    I was so pleased that they stopped and chatted with the press. I think an occasional chat every now and then will go a LONG way with their relationship with the press. I hope this is a step in the right direction. It is definitely a GREAT PR move. Good job Will and Kate! :)

    A simply spectacular day! The engagement, scenery, photos, mood, EVERYTHING, absolutely wonderful!

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    1. What lovely thoughts & observations Kate! I agree completely:)

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  74. Is it just me or did Kate see to choke when asked about her kids. I thought that was a sweet moment.

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    1. I too thought she did & it was sweet:)

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  75. This was an interesting fashion choice, not what I expected at all. I expected modern hiking gear and wear - proper hiking boots, a backpack, water, technical attire. I happen to love hiking and the outdoors so was excited to see something along those lines. She looks great though.

    I always love seeing photos of their staff. Does anyone know why Rebecca Deacon is not on the trip?

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    Replies
    1. She is. You can see her in some of these photos.

      Delete
  76. Hello reported:

    William and Kate encountered fellow trekkers during their journey. The royals stopped to chat to a trio from San Francisco, remarking how beautiful the weather was compared to Thursday.

    "They were pretty altogether," said Lauren McKennan. "There wasn't a single trail of sweat. They stopped to talk to us for three to five minutes and were absolutely charming."

    Alex Willmore added: "They asked us how long we had been here and talked about how lovely the weather was. We asked for a photograph they just laughed and wouldn't do it. But they were absolutely charming, very cool, very nice. They kept on saying how beautiful it was."


    http://us.hellomagazine.com/royalty/12016041513674/prince-william-kate-middleton-trek-bhutan

    That's disappointing. Why not? The Swedish prince Carl and his pregnant wife Sophia took a photo with a fan while they were in a baby store.

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    Replies
    1. JMS from Texas, USA16 April 2016 at 09:07

      Why should William and Kate declining to take a photo with the fellow hikers be disappointing to you, after all, the hikers didn't sound disappointed. Instead they related a very friendly encounter with William and Kate, which it seems was a much more memorable event.
      .

      Delete
  77. Sarah Maryland USA16 April 2016 at 02:55

    So I guess I spoke to soon in praisig William and Kate for talking to the media
    According to several royal reporters KP and the media had a huge fight over the fact they were getting any access to the royal couple on the hike and what resulted was that interview they gave
    So basically it wasn't out of the kindness of their hearts.
    How Kensington palace can think if is OK whatsoever to restrict media access on a publicly funded royal tour is beyond me
    Because from what I understand about the hike none of those nice photos or interview wouldn't have happened if the media hadn't stuck up for themselves
    I dare someone to say the media is stirring up trouble. They are 100 percent right to want access
    It was several reporters that confirmed this on social media but they didn't mention it until after the end of the day
    So really if they had wanted to stir up trouble they would've been giving us a tweet By tweet account of the issue as it was happening
    And now it seems they are trying to restrict access to the taj mahal
    They have to be very careful. This isn't a private holiday the Duke and duchess are on

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Argument was not with media, but the television broadcasters. When Diana went to the Taj she spent about 30 minutes alone in private.

      Delete
    2. Yes I dare say they are stirring trouble, or more likely simply insatiable. There are around 100 media who followed them to Bhutan. It was impossible to please all of them. The photocalls were pre-planned. The media knew about it. The only complaint was from broadcast who wanted to follow them up top. In the end KP did give them some access. And the interview was added in the end. I think it is a good compromise. The reason why there was no tweet by tweet account is because the issue is not as big as you think. Looking at all the reports from Sky, BBC and ITV, you woudn't detect any conflict whatsoever.

      Oh and this is not the first time on tour that some parts are private. Not at all! Imo William and KAte have been very obliging and they should be credited for that.

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    3. I agree Sammy.

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    4. Thx for speaking up Sammy. I Totally Agree!

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    5. Sarah

      I can't tell how relieved and happy I was, seeing them giving that interview.
      I think it would have been truly surprising after everything happened in the past months if they had treated the media nice out of kindness of their hearts.

      I am not saying they didn't deserve all the criticism, and knowing how stubborn William can be, I hardly expect a better relationship int the near future.

      Funnny isn' it? Private time when you go on a tour funded by taxpayers.

      Delete
  78. Re the Cambridges lack of public displays of affection, and the Duchess's quiet voice and manner, keep in mind they're English, so that behaviour is in keeping with their cultural norms. To me their demeanour is appropriately dignified for their roles as members of the royal family. But then, I'm Canadian and we're stereotypically also pretty reserved in public.

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    Replies
    1. The hike was 3 hours, not 6. Apparently they ride in a vehicle for the return to the hotel.

      Delete
    2. William & Catherine have a long established history of holding hands & gently touching each other, going all the way back to University. One of my favorite memories was during the Australian Tour when they were spied on & filmed taking a walk swinging their clasped hands & out of no where Kate just did a little jump kick to the side clicking her heals together:) It was quite endearing.

      Delete
  79. I know I'm in the minority here but I didn't care for Kate's hiking look today--too "fussy" for my taste. I preferred her look when she took off the vest and I think she would have looked better with simple hiking boots and minus the earrings but that's just my personal taste.

    My real issue today was with Kate bringing along her entire beauty entourage. I completely understand her not wanting to appear a sweaty mess in front of the world media but I think it's ridiculous that her hair actually looked better AFTER a six hour hike than it did before. All these comments (not just here, all over the media) about how Kate didn't sweat and was "fresh as a daisy" sends a horrible message--what's wrong with a woman sweating a bit during a tough hike? She could have left the huge team at the bottom and carried an elastic band to tie her hair back if it got too frizzy and a simple blotting pad or a touch of powder. Again, I'm not saying Kate should have appeared haggard and dripping sweat (she is in great shape, after all) but it would have been nice to see her with a healthy glow. I was shocked to read that so many people really believed that she didn't sweat at all and thought it sent a terrible message.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe it was just a reciprocal kind gesture: I am sure that the "beauty entourage", as human beings, would have disliked being not allowed to see the Tiger's Nest! Then, being there, it was a nice thing to take care of Kate's hair.

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    2. I'm sorry..... it is my understanding that their "Team" was availed of the opportunity to join the trek today as a courtesy, if they wanted to take it on! Kate didn't look any less sweaty than William, nor did she look any less sweaty than Bill Weir, who I just watched doing the same trek on CNN. Kate is Amazingly fit & I thought she looked appropriately hot (having shed her vest & wearing just her linen shirt for a part) & then not, as she put her vest back on & added a scarf for the cooler pieces. She has hair like mine & it holds it's body well. I too would have had hair that looked the same at the end as at the beginning. That's the bonus of having full wavy hair, it's very forgiving. You should have seen be after each of my 4x grueling Childbirths..... My friends always hated me because I looked fresh as a daisy & my hair was always great:) Now there are a lot of things I Don't like about my hair that go along with the perks, but that's a story for another day:) I'm not one to muck in on things here, but I think it's a tad catty to say She took her whole Glam Squad on a 6hr Mountain Trek just to ensure She looked good! :(

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    3. Did it occur to you that they came along because they too are being given the opportunity to enjoy parts of the tour? Why would they stay behind in their hotel rooms when they can accompany them?

      The media's presentation of Kate bringing along her team for her own sake is rather silly but of course it sells.

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  80. Sure hope those boots were comfortable for the trek. I find that most boots aren't suitable for long distance walking, but after having these for a decade plus Catherine knows what uses they are good for.

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  81. Hi. I've never commented on here before but have followed this blog for a long time. Charlotte you do a great job. I am a massive fan of the Royals and I do believe they need a balance between private time and public however, whilst this has been a great tour it has also left me a little dry in part and here's why. Firstly the tour had a slightly tourist element to it. I understand their hosts often want them too see certain things and thats' great but on this occasion I felt a little miffed by the number of tourist things they have done. Yes they have done the receptions and official stuff but at the end of the day I am a British taxpayer and have paid for them to go see things I can't afford to see myself! Does that make sense? With that in mind whilst I understand the tours are gruelling I would take issue with the "Private moments" seeing as I have paid for them to be there. In addition I felt shortchanged that the interview only came because of a problem with the TV broadcasters not because they were being obliging. With all this in mind I personally would like a behind the scenes documentary of the next tour showing us how it's planned from start to finish, ie. where they go, what they visit and how they choose wardrobes. I want to see what their staff are doing on tour and everything that happens behind the scenes. That what be fascinating I think but doubt that William would ever agree to it.

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  82. This is one of my favourite outfits. Loved the boots! The white Jaeger shirt looked comfy and cool for the hot weather, perfect for summer so I've ordered mine!

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