King Felipe VI of Spain toured St. Augustine’s centuries-old Spanish-built castle and other historic sites in his country’s former colony before addressing hundreds of well-wishers from a balcony downtown on Friday.

Under cloudy skies, the king and his wife Letizia toured the oldest city in the U.S. to celebrate St. Augustine’s 450th anniversary and attend a meeting of the U.S.-Spain Council.Waving Spanish flags and shouting “Long live Spain” in Spanish, throngs of people including children let out of school jammed St. Augustine’s central plaza to catch a glimpse of the glamorous royal couple.

King Felipe said he and his wife were touched by the outpouring, and impressed with the preservation of the Castillo de San Marcos, constructed in the 17th Century by Spanish forces to defend its colony.”It is a true symbol of the imperishable ties that bind Spanish and Americans together,” he said from a balcony, standing next to Letizia and an actor dressed as a Spanish conquistador.

Because the city of St. Augustine has been continuously occupied since its Spanish founding 450 years ago, it is recognized as the oldest city in the U.S.

Source: Spain’s royals cheered on visit to St. Augustine, Florida – Naples Daily News
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