Incoming governor-general Peter Cosgrove may have inadvertently let slip that Prince George will definitely be travelling to Australia with his parents William and Kate in April.
General Cosgrove also revealed the royal couple will visit Sydney before travelling to Canberra on the much-anticipated tour.
The former defence chief met the Queen at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday ahead of officially becoming her representative in late March.
The two had a wide-ranging discussion about Australia and also the upcoming visit.
“I mentioned to her the great pleasure that I see on every hand that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are coming to Australia soon,” General Cosgrove told reporters afterwards.
“That’s going to be a very welcome visit. They’ll bring with them Prince George the little one.
“They’ll be in Sydney and then in Canberra after their sojourn in New Zealand.”
Immediately asked if he’d inadvertently let slip that Prince George was definitely heading Down Under, the former defence chief back-peddled somewhat.
“I hope he’s coming,” he said.
“I don’t know – I’m not yet the governor-general.
“I think every Aussie who likes the idea of royal couples having their children with them on tour will hope that’s the case, but let’s wait and see.”
In announcing the Australian tour in December, the palace said it was anticipated Prince George would accompany the Duke and Duchess “but a decision will be made in due course”.
There was no legal requirement for General Cosgrove to meet the Queen before he assumes office, but the 66-year-old insisted it was “good manners”.
He said current Governor-General Quentin Bryce would visit Her Majesty after she stood down to “pay her respects”.
Wednesday’s private audience with Her Majesty and Prince Philip was followed by lunch.
General Cosgrove said they were joined by a number of household dogs “who were very, very tame and affectionate”.
After lunch, the Vietnam veteran headed down The Mall to Clarence House where he and the Duchess of Cornwall viewed watercolour artworks by Australian WWII war artist Norma Bull.
General Cosgrove will be the 26th governor-general when he is sworn in on March 28 at Parliament House in Canberra.