Next week's visit by Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, will be the first time in a quarter-century British royals have set foot on Waitangi Treaty Grounds.

The visit will be part of a week-long tour of the country by the next-in-line to the throne which also takes in Christchurch and Kaikōura.

The last royal visit to the Treaty Grounds was also by Prince Charles, who took part in Waitangi Day commemorations on his own in 1994.

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Treaty Grounds chief executive Greg McManus said the visit was ''a great honour''.

"There's a long tradition of royal visits to Waitangi so we are very pleased the future King will be reconnecting with Waitangi and the people of the north after a long absence. I hope people come out in large numbers to greet them."

Wednesday's visit would start with a pōwhiri at Te Whare Rūnanga (the carved meeting house) during which Prince Charles would speak from the mahau (porch), followed by a tree-planting ceremony and a tour of the grounds and the award-winning Te Kōngahu Museum of Waitangi, which opened in 2016.

Later in the day the couple is expected to visit schools and community volunteers in Paihia and Kerikeri.

Prince Charles receives a hongi from protest leader Mike Smith during Waitangi celebrations in 1994. Photo / Geoff Dale
Prince Charles receives a hongi from protest leader Mike Smith during Waitangi celebrations in 1994. Photo / Geoff Dale

The couple are due to arrive in Auckland on November 17 before travelling to the Bay of Islands, Christchurch and Kaikōura.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the royals would see the regeneration of Christchurch since the 2011 earthquake and the way the community had come together since the March 15 terror attacks. They would also see first-hand the effects of the 2016 Kaikōura earthquake.

The couple last visited New Zealand in 2015 and 2012. The Queen's last visit to New Zealand was in 2002.

■ See Tuesday's Advocate for an update on the royal itinerary and a run-down on where to be for the best chances of meeting the royal couple.


Prince's detour for old mate in Kerikeri

When Prince Charles last visited the Treaty Grounds for Waitangi Day commemorations in 1994 he slipped away from official duties for an evening to visit an old mate in Kerikeri.

When the royal party landed at Bay of Islands Airport most of the delegation, including then Prime Minister Jim Bolger and Governor-General Cath Tizard, headed off to Waitangi but the Prince's limousine and police escort shot off down Kerikeri's Inlet Rd instead to see an old friend.

Dick Ryan was a Lieutenant Commander when the Prince was serving in the Royal Navy and would invite him around for dinner whenever he called in to the naval base at Portsmouth. They became firm friends and stayed in touch even when Ryan moved to New Zealand.

Ryan earlier told the Advocate how the Prince's shiny black limousine had turned grey by the time it reached his home at the far end of what was then a gravel road.

They had dinner together and ''a good old chinwag'' before his old Navy mate had to revert to the role of touring royal and return to Waitangi.

Ryan moved to Havelock North in Hawke's Bay in 2010.