In just a couple months, one of the world’s most adored families — the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and their adorable son, Archie, of course — will be heading out for a big royal trip. But where exactly are Prince Harry and Meghan Markle going on their upcoming royal tour? This trip will take them to lands far away from England, but are beloved by the couple.
The family's upcoming royal tour will be Markle's first work-related trip since the birth of Archie and will take the family of three — yes, Archie is tagging along, too — to Africa, according to Harper’s Bazaar. The whole Sussex crew will be visiting South Africa together, while Prince Harry will likely be visiting Malawi, Angola, Botswana, and other countries solo.
"TRH The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are excited to announce that they have been asked to carry out a tour to Southern Africa this autumn," the couple announced on their official Instagram page in June. "The Foreign and Commonwealth Office have requested a visit to South Africa as well as The Duke carrying out visits to Malawi and Angola. His Royal Highness will also do a short working visit to Botswana en route to the other countries."
The announcement continued, "The Duke and Duchess are really looking forward to meeting so many of you on the ground and continuing to raise awareness of the high impact work local communities are doing across the Commonwealth and beyond. This will be their first official tour as a family!"
Botswana looms large in the couple’s history, as it’s where they got away from prying eyes and got to know one another early in their dating relationship. In fact, after just two dates in London, according to People, they made a trip to a private camp in Botswana where, as Prince Harry told the BBC, "we were really by ourselves, which was crucial to me to make sure that we had a chance to know each other."
Prince Harry came to love Africa under difficult circumstances. It’s where his father took him and his brother, Prince William, in the days after their mother’s death, to get away from the press and surrounding controversy, according to the International Business Times. Since then, however, it’s become bit of a mission field for the younger prince. His charity, Sentebale, works on behalf of children affected by HIV in Malawi, Botswana and Lesotho. And part of this royal tour will be spent promoting the work of Sentebale, according to Harper’s Bazaar.
Prince Harry is also expected to lobby on behalf of environmental efforts, which have garnered his interest in recent years, according to TIME. Recently, he added a personal note on an Instagram post promoting the work of National Geographic, writing: "Threats such as uncontrolled fires, the bushmeat trade, unsustainable harvesting of the forest and rapid biodiversity loss are already destroying this incredible and delicate landscape. Known by the locals as ‘Source of life’, this ecosystem is wilderness at its best, playing an absolutely crucial role for the planet, people and wildlife. This is our one and only chance to save this magnificent last Eden."
Though it’s not clear yet what causes Markle will lend her status to during the trip, it’s almost certain she won’t be along as just a tourist. In 2017, in fact, she wrote an article for TIME about ending the stigma over menstruation in areas like sub-Saharan Africa. And on a recent trip to Fiji, she gave a speech about women’s empowerment and education, as The Guardian reported. It’s highly likely she’ll have opportunities for some similar efforts on this royal tour.
As for Archie, well he'll be tagging along as a tiny tourist, for now. Needless to say, royal fans are excited to watch this lovely little family as they embark on this adventure to a place so dear to their hearts.