Hunter Valley not named on Prince Harry, Meghan tour of Australia

THE Hunter Valley has missed out on the upcoming royal tour.

Australia is the first stop on Prince Harry and wife Meghan's first official overseas tour which will include visits to Dubbo, Melbourne and Fraser Island.

The locations were announced in a statement from Kensington Palace.

The statement said their Royal Highnesses have been invited to visit the Commonwealth Realms of Australia and New Zealand by the countries' respective governments.

The Duke and Duchess will also visit Fiji and Tonga at the request of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

The program across these four Commonwealth countries will focus on youth leadership, environmental and conservation efforts – including the dedication of several new Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy projects – and the recovery and rehabilitation of servicemen and women through the Invictus Games Sydney 2018.

It was officially confirmed in June that both Prince Harry and Meghan Markle would be visiting Australia in October this year as part of their first major royal tour.

At the time it was believed the Royal couple would visit the Central West, with Bathurst the favoured location for the visit.

Bathurst and the Hunter Valley were earmarked as possible destinations back in May, and the Central West city has since made the shortlist as a host city.

They arrive in Sydney on October 16, before heading to Dubbo where locals say they are excited to welcome the royal pair.

Dubbo Mayor Ben Shields says the tour would give a big boost to local morale.

"It shows we're still on the map and Harry and Meghan are here to see what Australia is all about," he told AAP.

For a true Aussie experience Prince Harry and Meghan should have a bite of Australia's best meat pie and visit Taronga Western Plains Zoo, Cr Shields said.

Commercial Hotel Dubbo manager Jimmy Anthon says he's excited to welcome the royals, especially as locals need a boost in morale during the drought.

"It would be a good distraction as much as anything," he told AAP.

Following a day in Dubbo, the pair will travel to Melbourne and back to Sydney for the Invictus Games - a Paralympics style event for defence veterans - which begin on October 20.

On October 22 the royals will spend a day on Fraser Island, before making their way to Fiji and Tonga and then back to Sydney on October 26 to close out the Games the next day.

The tour will end with four days in New Zealand.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says he is looking forward to welcoming The Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

"Their visit will be an opportunity to promote the incredible achievements of Invictus athletes from around the world, and showcase Australian programmes promoting youth leadership, environmental and conservation efforts," he said in a statement on Monday.

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This story Hunter Valley misses out on Prince Harry, Meghan tour of Australia first appeared on Newcastle Herald.