Prince William accepted a rather unique and quirky gift on behalf of his family on Thursday.
PHOTOS FOR FULL GALLERY
During his visit to Auckland with Kate Middleton, the Duke of Cambridge was given a colourful caricature showing himself and his wife playing on a beach with Prince George.
William gratefully accepted the picture, which bore the Māori welcoming phrase, Haere mai, as he and Kate greeted well wishers in Auckland Harbour having taken part in a yacht race.
The artwork shows William and Kate building a sandcastle on one of New Zealand’s picturesque beaches, complete with golden sand and azure water.
One of the country’s iconic Pohutukawa trees, famous for its crimson flowers, is visible above the Duchess’ head.
In a diplomatic move the sandcastle built by the royal trio bears both the Union Jack as well as New Zealand’s flag in each of its turrets.
William and Kate charmed royal fans who lined the harbour enthusiastically waving flags and holding presents and flowers for the visitors.
Kate takes the helm in yacht race against Prince William around Auckland Harbour
The Duchess met one adorable young supporter who sat cross-legged in the ideal position on top of the barrier. The youngster beamed up at Kate as she shook his hand to his family’s delight.
Earlier in the day William and Kate each boarded an Emirates Team New Zealand Americas Cup yacht as the prepared to race each other.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge share an intimate moment on unique boat ride in Auckland
As William, Kate and their respective crews were about to start, the heavens opened and locals joked that the royals had brought the poor British weather with them.
Nevertheless, it was time for them to embrace their competitive sides, and with both the Duke and Duchess being keen sailors, they looked eager to participate in the “informal” matches between the two yachts which saw Kate storm to victory.
According to New Zealand’s Radio Live, William had specifically asked to have a light-hearted race arranged for him and his wife, reminiscent of the couple competing against each other in a Dragon Boat race during 2011’s North America tour.