King and Queen of Spain start nationwide tour of gratitude here in the Canaries on Tuesday 23 June

Photo: Casa Real.

Updated 4.30pm, 23/6: King Felipe VI, speaking in Gran Canaria, says that Spain has faced a triple crisis, a healh crisis, and an economic and social one. The King said that he and the Queen wanted to share their grief for the victims here in the Canaries, and their hopes for the rapid recovery of those still suffering Covid19. They came here first, he said, not just because the Canaries is the most distant area of Spain, but also where it all started – how long ago do those cases in La Gomera seem now?!

The King said that we are in the first days of the country’s reopening. The country won’t fully open up until 1 July but it’s already underway. As such, their visit is symbolic of the reopening, and the recovering of spirits, while facing a difficult situation and a very steep hill ahead. But this is a new stage, and we will hope to begin to see a recovery for real, of the economy, social needs and all of our future expectations. Tourism, and its service sectors, are the principal foundation of the country’s economy, he said, and nowhere more than here in the Canaries. And so the royal couple hope their visit will serve to raise spirits and give hope.

As of 5pm, they are now on their way to Tenerife South.

Updated 23 June: I don’t usually do this, says the King of Spain, as he signs a fan’s football … which is unlikely ever again to be used as such! What a lovely down-to-earth couple this is! As I post this at just past 1pm, they’re still in Gran Canaria.

Updated 22 June: The Canarian Government has confirmed that the King and Queen will start their day’s visit to the Canaries in Gran Canaria, and will then arrive in TFS between 5.30 and 6pm.

Original post 15 June: King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia will tour the whole of Spain once the estado de alarma is lifted this Sunday 21 June. Their tour will start on Tuesday 23, and it will start in the Canary Islands. Details are still to be announced of their visits, but they are to honour the effort of the entirety of Spanish society to overcome the crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. And they are starting with us.

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