NAANTALI, FINLAND – Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko visited the Finnish city of Naantali to make a courtesy call on President Sauli Niinistoe on Wednesday.
Naantali is a famous tourism spot about 180 kilometers west of Helsinki.
Before traveling to Naantali, the couple laid flowers at the tomb of the unknown soldier and the grave of Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim, a Finnish hero, in Helsinki.
The crown prince and crown princess went to Naantali to visit Niinistoe’s official summer residence.
During discussions with the couple, Niinistoe said that works of Japanese literature are well known in Finland. He said he is reading a piece written by Haruki Murakami.
Noting the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the two countries’ diplomatic relations, Crown Prince Akishino said he sincerely hopes that people-to-people exchanges will increase further and help deepen the countries’ bilateral friendship for the next 100 years.
After that, the couple attended a luncheon hosted by the president at the residence. Along with the presidential couple, they walked around a garden where roses and lilacs were in bloom.