The couple, both 37, attempted to fly to Islamabad during their royal tour of Pakistan on Thursday night but were forced to turn back to the city of Lahore after they encountered a fierce electrical storm.
The pilot attempted to land the RAF Voyager at two different airports, People magazine reported on Thursday. The flight was meant to take about 24 minutes, but the plane was in the air for two hours.
The outlet reported that Middleton and William arrived in Islamabad on Friday morning — about 18 hours after they were meant to land.
“We were looked after so wonderfully by the RAF who did a great job,” the Duchess of Cambridge told reporters on Friday, as reported by the outlet. “Hugely grateful to everyone.”
“I think it was quite an adventure really, it was really bumpy up there,” Middleton continued. “We were looked after so wonderful by the RAF who did a great job liaising with everyone and got us home safely.”
During the storm, lightning could be seen over the right wing as the plane “bumped and rolled side to side.”
“Those big flashes are the RAF Voyager, carrying William, Kate and traveling media, going through [lightning] – two aborted landings at Islamabad due to the storm and we’re back in Lahore,” tweeted Press Association reporter Emma Louise Bowden.
After the plane landed, William, an experienced pilot, reassured members of the media at the back of the plane and even joked that he was the one doing the flying. The British royal added that it was either going to be a night out in Lahore, or they would return to the capital for the evening.
The outlet reported William and Middleton started their day at the SOS Children’s Village, a charity in Lahore that provides a home and family structure to over 150 children. During their appearance, the couple celebrated the birthdays of three children with traditional Pakistani cakes.
Afterward, Middleton and William played with more children at the National Cricket Academy. The duo also followed in the footsteps of William’s late mother, Princess Diana of Wales, by seeing a mosque and a cancer hospital she visited during her own trips to Pakistan back in the 1990s.
While at the hospital, Middleton wore matching tiaras with a young patient. The little girl hosted a tea party for the couple on her hospital bed.