Prince Charles and Camilla wave goodbye to their 'wonderfully kind' Australian hosts

In a heartfelt speech to his Australian hosts Prince Charles thanked them for their "wonderfully kind thoughts and expressions" that made the visit so enjoyable. The Prince and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, attended their final engagement in Australia, a lunch at Government House in Canberra, before embarking on the final leg of their trip.

Now heading into the third part of their Diamond Jubilee tour to Australasia, the royal couple are shortly due to arrive in New Zealand. In the speech Charles joked about the great scale of the trip, saying "when we finally get back, after a very, very, long journey, if I'm still reasonably compos mentis by then and haven't completely lost my marbles to jet lag, I will report back to her majesty your wonderfully kind thoughts after our visit."

The Queen's son said that he and Camilla had found the trip a "joy" and added that it had been a privilege "to witness the extraordinary vibrancy of the multicultural society which Australia is and which of couse has stoof Australia in such remarkable stead in terms of the richness and diversity which you can see only too well."

During their six-day trip visit the couple ventured from the Queensland Outback to the Melbourne Cup and whilst Charles said they had not been able to see as many places as they would have liked, he remarked that he had still been able to "witness so many of the changes that have happened since I was last here."

 Earlier in the day hundreds of people had turned out in the country's capital to see the royal duo, one woman even giving the Prince an early birthday present, a packet of the well-loved Australian biscuits - Tim Tams. Charles, who turns 64 next week, thanked 25-year-old Alyson Richards saying she was "very kind."

Later the couple then marked the eve of Remembrance Day by laying a wreath at the Australian War Memorial before meeting with Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard as well as a host of community volunteers as they bid farewell to their Antipodean hosts.

The royal duo will arrive in Auckland to a traditional Maori welcome, before enjoying the many delights of New Zealand's North and South Islands.

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