Prince Harry, Meghan Markle and their seven-month-old son Archie Harrison will celebrate Christmas privately this year in Canada instead of being part of the royal family tradition at Queen Elizabeth Estate in Sandringham. On Friday, a spokesperson for the couple confirmed the Duke and Duchess’ vacation plans.
“Their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Sussex spend time with their families in Canada,” said Us Weekly spokesperson. “The decision to settle in Canada reflects the importance of this Commonwealth country for both of them.”
For security reasons, the palace said it would not release further details of Harry and Meghan’s vacation plans, and also requested the couple’s confidentiality.
The couple’s spokesperson said Prince Harry has visited Canada several times over the years, and Meghan Markle also called Canada for seven years when she starred in the American legal drama Suits, before joining the Royal family.
Canada is also the place where the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made their first public appearance together when they were dating. They appeared in Toronto at the Invictus Games in September 2017, just weeks before announcing their engagement.
The spokesperson said the couple enjoy sharing the warmth of the Canadian people and “the beauty of the landscape” with baby Archie.
Last month, Buckingham Palace announced that Harry and Meghan would not join Queen Elizabeth, Prince Charles, Prince William, Kate Middleton and the rest of the royal family at Sandringham, so that they would not be part of the traditional Christmas walk to Saint Mary Magdalene is as if they had been the last two Christmases.
Instead, they chose to spend the holiday season as a new family with Markle’s mother Doria Ragland.
The palace said the decision to celebrate Christmas in private was in keeping with the precedent set by other members of the royal family, and the Queen fully supported the decision.
Meanwhile, Prince Philip was taken to hospital on Friday morning as a “precautionary measure”. It is not known if he will be back with the family in time for Christmas, but it was not an emergency and the Duke of Edinburgh was not transported by ambulance. Instead, it was a planned hospital admission, and he was taken to the hospital in a private car.
Queen Elizabeth arrived at her private residence in Sandringham on Friday. As for Harry and Meghan, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau welcomes the couple with open arms.
“Prince Harry, Meghan and Archie, we all wish you a peaceful and blessed stay in Canada,” tweeted Trudeau. “You are among friends and you are always welcome here.”