Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s love affair with Africa as they prepare to return

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have long shared their love of Africa, with both having previously visited the country for both charity work and holidays.

Now the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are preparing to return to one of their favourite destinations with a royal tour of Southern Africa in Autumn which will include stops in South Africa, Angola and Malawi. Harry will also make a working visit to Botswana.

And yes, the couple’s son Archie will be joining them for part of their travels.

It’s no surprise that the continent was on the couple’s radar; after all, it’s no secret that Africa holds a special place in both royals’ hearts.

Prince Harry has often spoken of his love for Africa, having once described it as his “second home” and of course it’s also played a key role in his and Meghan’s romance.

After all, it was in Africa that the couple enjoyed one of their first romantic minibreaks together – including a three-week safari trip for Meghan’s birthday – not to mention that Meghan’s engagement ring itself features a diamond from Botswana.

Meghan previously visited Rwanda when she was an ambassador for World Vision

Even before the pair met, they were both involved in various charity projects which saw them visiting the sun-soaked continent and spending time with locals.

Prince Harry often visited as part of his work for the royal’s charity Sentebale and his role as patron for Rhino Conservation Botswana, while Meghan previously headed to Rwanda when she was a global ambassador for World Vision.

However, it’s Botswana that already sits at the forefront of their love story.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are due to go on a royal tour of Southern Africa

It was here that Prince Harry whisked Meghan away for a luxury safari break just a few weeks after their first blind date – and later the couple reportedly returned for Meghan’s birthday.

Speaking to the BBC in their first joint interview, Harry said: “I managed to persuade her to come and join me in Botswana.

“We camped out with each other under the stars. She came and joined me for five days out there, which was absolutely fantastic.”

Meno a Kwena campsite where the couple stayed

 

They pulled out all the stops as they camped under the stars opting to stay at the glamorous Meno a Kwena campsite , which overlooks the Boteti river and offers the perfect opportunity to take in the views and look out for the exotic wildlife.

The campsite boasts some pretty incredible accommodation

 

It seems extra touching then that when Prince Harry popped the question, the engagement ring he chose featured a diamond from Botswana, as well as two diamonds from Princess Diana.

Meghan’s engagement ring features a diamond from Botswana

No doubt Africa will continue to play a big part in the couple’s lives for years to come.

Prince Harry has visited the destination on numerous occasions and has plenty of ties to various African countries thanks to his charity work.

For example, his charity Sentebale works to help vulnerable children in Botswana and Lesotho, so the royal has often visited to see the progress being made and speak to locals – he was even reunited with a young boy he met on his very first trip in a touching moment on one of his visits. 

Prince Harry was reunited with an old friend in Lesotho

Prince Harry also took on a new role as patron for Rhino Conservation Botswana the same year, so no doubt will continue returning to the African country to see progress being made and help to raise awareness for the cause.

Harry has previously described Africa as his second home

Africa has repeatedly featured in the British royals’ history.

It was in Kenya that the then-Princess Elizabeth discovered she was Britain’s new monarch, while Prince William proposed to Kate Middleton in the beautiful Lewa Safari Camp by Lake Rutundu, near Mount Kenya.

Meghan met with locals when she visited Rwanda when she was an ambassador for World Vision

Of course, South Africa will also have a place close to Harry’s heart as mother Princess Diana paid regular visits to the country, and travelled there to meet Nelston Mandela just a few months before her tragic death.

South Africa has also played host to a series of royal tours ; the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited twice, first in 1995 and then 1999, while Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall visited in 2011.

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