Soon after the little prince’s birth July 22, VisitBritain announced “Baby Cambridge is Born! 2013 is the Time to Visit Family-Friendly Britain”.
The “First Prince of Cambridge has arrived, weighing in at 8 lbs. 6 oz.! The news of the birth of the Duke and Duchess’s son was announced today by an easel proclamation outside Buckingham Palace, just as Prince William’s birth was announced in 1982,” VisitBritain said in a statement.
Nary a moment to be wasted.
As Shakespeare wrote in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, “I go, I go; look how I go, Swifter than arrow from the Tartar’s bow.” Follow Puck, more than Lady Macbeth, who urged “…go at once.”
Here are VisitBritain’s suggestions of where to celebrate the newest royal:
Kensington Palace, where the family of three will live, and where Prince William and Prince Harry grew up.
One side of the palace is open, where ordinary folks can see the King’s and Queen’s State Apartments.
The palace also has a new exhibition, “Fashion Rules”, featuring dresses of Diana, Princess of Wales — what a grand grandmother she would have been. Royal garb of Queen Elizabeth and her sister Princess Margaret are displayed as well.
The Duke of Cambridge took his first steps in public on the grounds of Kensington Palace. Non-royals can enjoy the Diana Memorial Playground, a five-minute walk from Kensington Gardens. The playground was inspired by J. M. Barrie’s “Peter Pan”, and has a huge pirate ship.
The royal babe may be christened in a replica of an intricate Honiton lace and satin gown, which was used as far back as 1841.
Prince William and his father Prince Charles each wore the original gown when they were christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury in the Music Room at Buckingham Palace.
Travelers can visit Buckingham Palace, home to the baby’s great grandmother Queen Elizabeth throughout the summer.
A special exhibition “The Queen’s Coronation 1953”, celebrating her 60 years on the throne, displays the robes worn, the Diamond Diadem, and the personal invitation sent to four-year-old Prince Charles for the occasion. The diamond jubilee exhibit opens July 27 and continues through Sept. 29.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will have a country house at Amner Hall in Norfolk, England.
The Royal Family spends Christmas nearby at Sandringham, the Queen’s Norfolk retreat.
The house and exquisite gardens are open to the public. Sandringham’s Country Park has 600 acres of land, complete with vacation cottages. Open March 30 to Nov. 3, except July 27 to Aug. 2.
Anglesey, Wales is where the newlywed Duke and Duchess of Cambridge began their married life. Beaches there include Newborough, and pubs where the couple has dined include the White Eagle.
The couple met in Scotland at St. Andrews. In Scotland, the royal duo is called the Earl and Countess of Strathearn. Soon we’ll know what they’ll call their newborn son.
Now, not far behind was Britain’s ShermansTravel.com with its “Royal Baby Alert: Top Baby Friendly Spots in London”.
It recommends the Princess Diana Memorial Fountain, where lots of children and a few adults splash around in Hyde Park. And it also found a few restaurants that actually welcome children.
ShermansTravel.com links to Transport for London’s Step-Free Tube Guide, which highlights all subway (Underground) stations with elevator (lift) or escalator access from the street, plus info about the size of the gap between platform and train.
Shermans even links to the “Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme”, a list of businesses that accommodate breastfeeding mothers.
And only a couple of days after baby George’s name was announced, VisitBritain offered travel ideas pegged to the six King Georges, stretching back two centuries to George I, who acceded to the throne in 1714.
The first King George was infamous for divorcing his wife Sophia Dorothea and imprisoning her, albeit in a castle, for the rest of her life.
Based on that enticement, VisitBritain again touted visiting Britain’s castles, perchance Warwick Castle, which this year unlocked four rooms that had been closed to the public.
At St. James Palace, both George I and George II held court; the man who would become George IV married Caroline of Brunswick; and Queen Victoria married Prince Albert in its Chapel Royal. The public can attend Sunday services at the Chapel Royal, but not the palace itself.
(For George III, a.k.a. “Mad King George”, whom Americans rebelled against, skip to the bottom of the story.)
King George IV created Brighton’s Royal Pavilion, the exotic eclectic palace built between 1787 and 1823. It’s open to the public every day.
King George VI, Queen Elizabeth’s father, is celebrated at the Royal Ascot Races this weekend, “Betfair Weekend”. “The King George” race, on his namesake day, has a one million pound (almost $1,540,000) purse. Show off your hat at the garden party around the racecourse.
And now, for all Americans who’ve been agog, goo-gooing, and Googling royal baby George — if you want to see something in the U.S. from one of his namesakes, King George III, get thee to the National Archives in Washington.
King George III’s “Proclamation for Suppressing Rebellion and Sedition”, August 23, 1775, labeled America’s rebellious colonists “Traitors” and condemned their “traitorous confpiracies (sic) and Attempts againft (sic) Us, Our Crown and Dignity.”
It’s difplayed (sic) alongside America’s Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights, collectively known as the “Charters of Freedom”, in the National Archives’ rotunda.