King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima of the Netherlands spent the first day of their three-day state visit to Canada in the capital Ottawa. They visited Parliament Hill, laid a wreath at the National War Memorial and spoke with Canadian war veterans.

By Frank Kuin in Ottawa

On the first official day of their three-day state visit to Canada, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima flew from St. John’s, Newfoundland, to the Canadian capital, Ottawa. By horse-drawn carriage they arrived at Rideau Hall, the official residence of the Governor General of Canada, David Johnston.

Koning en koningin arriveren per koets bij Rideau Hall.

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima arrive atRideau Hall.

Following the inspection of the honour guard by the King, Johnston addressed the royal couple with a word of welcome. “One in every 30 or so Canadians is of Dutch origin, which explains a lot about the quality of this country,” he said.

Koning Willem-Alexander en de Canadese gouverneur-generaal David Johnston tijdens de welkomstceremonie bij Rideau Hall.

King Willem-Alexander and Governor General David Johnston during the welcome ceremony at Rideau Hall.

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima greeted the audience of a few hundred Dutch-Canadians who had assembled at Rideau Hall.

Inside, the royal couple met with the Governor-General, who is the representative of Queen Elizabeth II in Canada, and his wife, Sharon Johnston.

Bijeenkomst van het gezelschap binnen Rideau Hall.

Meeting at Rideau Hall.

From Rideau Hall, the King and Queen travelled to Parliament Hill. They signed the guest books of the Senate and the House of Commons and were given a tour of the historic Centre Block, with short visits to the Library of Parliament and the Senate chamber.

Koning en koningin tekenen het gastenboek van het Canadese parlement in Ottawa.

The King and Queen sign guest books in the Rotunda of Canada’s Parliament in Ottawa.

After lunch with the chairmen of the Senate and the House, the royal couple laid a wreath at the National War Memorial in downtown Ottawa, not far from the Parliament buildings. Last fall, the war monument was the scene of a deadly attack by an armed assailant who subsequently stormed into the Parliament building.

Following the ceremony, the royals continued on foot to the National Arts Centre across the street, to meet with Canadian war veterans. Canadian soldiers liberated the Netherlands from Nazi occupation at the end of the Second World War.

Het koninklijk paar gaat te voet van het oorlogsmonument naar het National Arts Centre voor een ontmoeting met Canadese oorlogsveteranen.

The royal couple makes its way from the National War Memorial to the National Arts Centre, for a meeting with Canadian war veterans.


Back on Parliament Hill, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima met with Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife Laureen. Canada’s ties with the Netherlands “are one of our closest relationships in the world,” said Harper.

“Canadians never cease to be amazed by the ongoing gratitude from the Dutch population for their Canadian liberators,” said the Prime Minister, who travelled to the Netherlands earlier this month to attend the ceremonies to mark the 70th anniversary of the liberation.

Koning Willem-Alexander en Koningin Máxima met de Canadese premier Stephen Harper en zijn echtgenote Laureen.

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima met with Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his wife Laureen.

After their visit to the Prime Minister’s Office, the royal couple met with the ‘Dutch caucus’ in Parliament, a group of Canadian MPs of Dutch background or with a connection to the Netherlands.

Het koninklijk paar met leden van de 'Dutch caucus', een groep parlementsleden met een band met Nederland.

The royal couple with members of the ‘Dutch caucus’, a group of MPs with a connection with the Netherlands.

In the evening, King Willem-Alexander thanked the Governor General and his wife for their hospitality. “There are few countries in the world where the link with Holland is so tangible as it is here,” he said. “It is a connection that flows from the heart and a shared, living history.”

This post is also available in: Dutch


One Response to In pictures: King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima visit Ottawa

  1. […] and final day of their state visit to Canada, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima flew from Ottawa to Toronto, Canada’s largest city. At the Ontario legislature, they met the […]

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