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Naruhito visits Mayan ruins on Mexico trip

March 19, 2006
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Prince Naruhito of Japan was looking more Western than Eastern when he donned a cowboy-style hat for a visit to the Mayan ruins of Uxmal on the Yucatan Peninsula at the weekend.

The heir to the Chrysanthemum throne is in Mexico to attend the World Water Forum, currently being held in the capital. And his visit to the impressive archaeological site must have been especially interesting for the 45-year-old royal, as he specialised in history at university – both as a graduate student in Japan and later at Oxford.

He continued his visit the next day with a trip to the Ria Celestun biosphere reserve, home to pink flamingos.

With Crown Princess Masako still recovering from a stress related illness, Naruhito made the trip to Mexico alone. Speaking prior to his departure for the forum, the prince explained that his wife is still not well enough to travel but expressed the hope that she will be able to accompany him in the future.

"Masako is recovering steadily but slowly,'' he said. "But she is not well enough to perform overseas official duties that involve a long trip. I truly hope there will be an opportunity to visit a foreign country with Masako as soon as possible."

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Photo: ©
The Crown Prince poses in a cowboy-style straw hat in front of the Mayan ruins at Uxmal Photo: © AFPy
Photo: ©
The prince also visited the Ria Celestun biosphere reserve, which is home to a host of bird species including pink flamingos Photo: © AFP

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