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Queen Elizabeth II reviews troops at her arrival in Brasilia (Federal District Public Archives)

November 1, 1968 – Friday

Queen Elizabeth II arrived on a Royal Air Force aircraft at the Guararapes Airport in Recife at 16:15. Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, had landed 15 minutes earlier as he was coming from Mexico, where he had attended the Olympic Games. The royal couple proceeded in a motorcade through the streets of the capital of Pernambuco bound for the Campo das Princesas Palace to attend a reception offered by Governor Nilo Coelho in their honour. Among the distinguished guests were Gilberto Freyre, one of the main cultural interpreters of Brazil, author of the celebrated The Masters and The Slaves; Dom Hélder Câmara, the Archbishop of Olinda and Recife, a prominent civil rights advocate; and Marco Maciel, a politician who would later become the Vice President of Brazil (1995-2002). At 18:30, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh boarded the Royal Yacht Britannia to Salvador.


November 2 – Saturday

The royal couple spent the day on the Royal Yacht Britannia travelling to Salvador.


November 3 – Sunday

At 7:00, the Royal Yacht Britannia entered the coast of Salvador. At 9:15, the royal couple disembarked and travelled in motorcade to the Anglican Church and then visited the British Club. At 10:10, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh arrived at the Aclamação Palace, where Governor Luís Viana Filho welcomed them to a reception in their honour. Jorge Amado, a major name in 20th century Brazilian literature, and Carybé, a highly-regarded Argentinian-Brazilian visual artist, were among the guests at the reception. From the Aclamação Palace, they proceeded to visit the historical São Francisco Church, the Sacred Art Museum and the Mercado Modelo, a traditional popular market. The royal couple then returned to the Royal Yacht Britannia, departing to Rio de Janeiro at 12:35.


November 4 – Monday

The Royal Yacht Britannia continued its journey towards Rio de Janeiro.


November 5 – Tuesday

The Royal Yacht Britannia sailed into the Guanabara Bay early in the morning and anchored near the Ilha do Governador. Around 10:30, the royal couple boarded a Royal Air Force aircraft in the Galeão Airport to Brasilia.

At 12:15, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh arrived at the Federal Capital where they were welcomed by President Artur da Costa e Silva, beginning their state visit. After settling in at the Hotel Nacional, the Queen, always accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, attended a ceremonial reception at the Alvorada Palace, official residence of the President. Her Majesty then participated in a special session at the Supreme Federal Court; addressed the members of the Chamber of Deputies and the Federal Senate at the National Congress; and attended a banquet in her honour at the Itamaraty Palace, headquarters of the Brazilian Foreign Service.


November 6 – Wednesday

In the morning, the royal couple visited a kindergarten, the Metropolitan Cathedral, where they were welcomed by the Archbishop of Brasília, Dom José Newton de Almeida Batista, as well as the Urban Military Area of the city. Next, for a panoramic view of Brasília, they visited the TV Tower, where Mayor Wadjô Gomide offered the Queen two Brazilian jaguars. The Queen concluded her official programme with a visit to the Embassy of the United Kingdom.

The royal couple left Brasília on board of a Royal Air Force aircraft at 13:00 and arrived in São Paulo at 14:45. They visited the Ipiranga Monument, allusive to Brazilian Independence, and the Itália Building, one of the tallest in Brazil. In the evening, Governor Abreu Sodré offered a ceremonial welcoming banquet at the Bandeirantes Palace in honour of the royal couple. On the occasion, famous popular singers Wilson Simonal, Jair Rodrigues and Elza Soares performed to the Queen and the Duke.


November 7 – Thursday

From the Bandeirantes Palace, where the royal couple were staying, they went on to visit of the laboratories of the British pharmaceutical company Burroughs Wellcome do Brasil. Following the visit, the Queen inaugurated the Museu de Arte de São Paulo (MASP), one of the chief visual arts institution in Brazil. The royal couple then proceeded to the airport.  At 13:40, they boarded a Royal Air Force aircraft to Campinas.

There, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited the Agricultural Research Institute and the Santa Elisa Farm. They spent the night at the Santa Eudóxia Ranch.


November 8 – Friday

The second day in Campinas started with a horse ride at the Santa Eudóxia Ranch and a visit to the Jockey Club. At 14:45, the royal couple took off from the Viracopos Airport bound for the Santos Dumont Airport in Rio de Janeiro, where they landed at 16:00.

In Rio, their programme started with a cocktail reception at the Yacht Club at 17:30. In the evening, the royal couple offered a dinner to some fifty guests on the Royal Yacht Britannia.


November 9 – Saturday

In the morning, while the Duke of Edinburgh visited the Mauá Shipyard in the neighbouring city of Niterói, the Queen visited tourist sites in Rio de Janeiro: the Botafogo Beach, the Mirante Dona Marta, a well-known overlook, and the Outeiro da Glória, a historic church. Governor Francisco Negrão de Lima offered a luncheon in honour of the royal couple at the Museum of Modern Art for two hundred guests. In the afternoon, Queen Elizabeth II participated in the symbolic launch of the construction of the Rio-Niterói Bridge at the Caju borough. At 22:00, the royal couple attended a reception in their honour at the Embassy of the United Kingdom (despite the fact that the capital of Brazil had moved to the newly-built Brasília, the diplomatic corps would remain in Rio de Janeiro until the early 1970s).


November 10 – Sunday

The first event, at 10:00, was the laying of a wreath of flowers at the Monument to the Dead in World War II. Later, the royal couple visited the Anglican Church and again the Embassy of the United Kingdom to greet the staff. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburg had lunch aboard the Royal Yacht Britannia and at 17:00 they attended a football match between the all-stars of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, at the Mário Filho Stadium, the Maracanã.


November 11 – Monday

In the morning, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburg boarded the Royal Air Force VC10 aircraft from the Galeão Airport on their way to Chile, their next destination.


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