London: Say goodbye to the party prince; say
hello to the queen`s secret weapon.
That`s how royal watchers have seen Prince Harry`s first
major diplomatic tour -- a 10-day jaunt to the Caribbean and
South America to represent his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II
as part of celebrations marking her Diamond Jubilee.
The trip offered Harry, 27, a first step onto the
international stage in a role that will become increasingly
common as a younger generation of royals step to the fore.
The official part of the trip, which also included a
business-boosting visit to Brazil, ended yesterday with a
charity polo match after which Harry gave an exuberant thumbs
up after he was kissed on the cheek by a brunette model.
Today, he set out for Brazil`s interior to study its
ecosystems as part of a private project conducted by the
charitable foundation he runs with his brother, Prince
Press reports emphasised that Harry had been a hit with
locals and made good on his vow to make his grandmother proud.
Robert Lacey, author of several books about the queen,
said Harry`s successful trip reflects his new maturity.
"He`s grown into this role in the last few years, in part
because of his military career," Lacey said "There were
concerns because of some mishaps over the years that Harry
would be the troublesome one in the family, but he`s really
doing remarkably well."
As a younger man and teenager, Harry raised eyebrows with
his fondness for partying and, most notoriously, when he wore
Nazi gear to a costume party and was photographed wearing a
Lacey said Harry`s British military training, and that of
his elder brother, Prince William, has greatly impressed the
"People can see that Harry`s not getting special
treatment, that he has to pass helicopter exams and work
really hard," said Lacey. "The same is true for William. It`s
extraordinarily important to how people see the young