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William and Kate set for honeymoon

world Updated: Jun 17, 2011 17:12 IST

AFP
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Prince William and his new bride prepared on Saturday for their honeymoon after a wedding watched across the world, but their destination is secret and they want the media to respect their privacy.

After partying through the night as the pomp and splendour of Friday's service gave way to dinner and dancing -- and a chance for the younger royals to let their hair down -- the couple were expected to set off for a mystery location.

All that is known is that William has taken two weeks' leave from his job as a Royal Air Force search and rescue pilot.

William has reportedly not even told his new wife where they are going on honeymoon, leaving speculation to grow over possible destinations.

The second-in-line to the throne has a deep love of Africa and he proposed to Kate in Kenya last year, so that has been mooted as a possible honeymoon spot.

Jordan has also been touted as a possibility and would have nostalgic appeal for Kate as her family lived in the kingdom for two years when she was a child.

But given the current upheaval in the Middle East, it would be considered a compromised choice.

A secluded Caribbean island would allow the couple to escape the prying eyes of the media.

Bequia and Necker Island all have the benefit of being easily secured, and Kate's wealthy parents are frequent visitors to the ultra-exclusive Mustique.

Lizard Island, off the coast of Queensland, Australia, has also emerged as a contender.

Whatever the choice, the honeymoon is set to be the first test of the new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's relationship with the British press.

William is believed to be determined that after the couple shared their wedding with the world and an estimated one million people on the streets of London, he wants to have some private time with his new wife.

He is known to harbour deep resentment against the media after the death of his mother Diana, princess of Wales, killed in a car crash in Paris in 1997 as she was being pursued by photographers.

The royal family is believed to be prepared to take legal action to prevent any media outlet attempting to disrupt the honeymoon.

Following the wedding of Diana and Prince Charles in 1981, they spent the first stage of their honeymoon in England, staying at the home of the groom's great-uncle.

They then embarked on board the royal yacht Britannia, visiting Gibraltar before cruising to Algeria, Tunisia, Sicily, the Greek islands and Egypt and then going to Scotland to spend time with the royal family at Queen Elizabeth II's private Balmoral estate.

But the Britannia -- which solved the headache of royal security for holidays -- was decommissioned in 1997.

More details of Friday's wedding service in Westminster Abbey emerged in Saturday's newspapers.

With the help of lipreaders, they said that as Kate walked up the aisle William's best man and brother, Prince Harry, turned to him at the altar and said: "Wait till you see the dress".

The ivory satin and lace wedding dress by Sarah Burton of Alexander McQueen, featuring a hand-embroidered veil and lace sleeves, received unanimous praise in Saturday's media.

"The House of McQueen and the future Queen surpassed all expectations," said The Times' fashion correspondent.

Harry was said to be the driving force behind Friday's evening party at Buckingham Palace.

It featured a disco and a live performance from pop starlet Ellie Goulding and went on until the wee hours of 3:00am.