Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are embarking on a 10-day royal tour of Africa, marking the first time the family has traveled together since the birth of baby Archie. The royal tour marks a significant moment for the royal couple, as they share a special connection to the continent. Early in their relationship, Prince Harry and Markle famously traveled to Botswana after just a few dates and Markle’s engagement ring includes a diamond mined from the country.
The royal couple kicked off their tour in Cape Town, South Africa on Sept. 23 with a visit to the Justice Desk Initiative, which works to educate and empower people to combat poverty and unemployment. Markle, dressed in a Mayamiko dress, gave an emotional speech to the crowd, stating: “May I just say that while I am here with my husband, as a member of the royal family, I want you to know that for me I am here with you as a mother, as a wife, as a woman, as a woman of color and as your sister.”
On day three of the tour, baby Archie finally made his first public appearance where he met Archbishop Desmond Tutu alongside his parents. The youngest royal was dressed in H&M overalls while his mother wore a printed dress from Club Monaco.
The couple’s Africa royal tour marks the third trip they’ve embarked on in the last year. After revealing Markle’s pregnancy in October 2018, the couple spent two weeks traveling through Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga. In February, the couple then took a three-day trip to Morocco before Markle went on maternity leave.
From what countries the royal couple and baby Archie are visiting to the significance of the trip, here is everything you need to know about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Africa Royal Tour 2019.
When are Prince Harry and Meghan Markle going to be in Africa?
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will travel to southern Africa from Monday, Sept. 23 to Wednesday, Oct. 2. They will be traveling as a family with their son Archie, who is four months old.
Where will Prince Harry and Meghan Markle travel to?
According to an Instagram post from the couple’s shared account, the royal family will be traveling together to South Africa. Prince Harry will then separately travel to Angola, Malawi and Botswana.
What have Prince Harry and Meghan Markle done in Africa?
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle kicked off their royal tour of Africa visiting Cape Town, South Africa, where they met with the Justice Desk Initiative, which works to educate and empower people to combat poverty and unemployment. Markle, dressed in a black and white dress by Mayamiko — a sustainable fashion brand that works with local fabric markets in Malawai — gave an emotional speech to the crowd, stating “May I just say that while I am here with my husband, as a member of the royal family, I want you to know that for me I am here with you as a mother, as a wife, as a woman, as a woman of color and as your sister.”
Later on their first day of the Africa royal tour, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex visited the District Six Museum and the Homecoming Centre, which are rebuilding their local community in Cape Town.
On day two of the royal tour — which coincided with World Heritage Day in South Africa — the royal couple joined the festivities on the Bo Kaap streets. The couple also visited the Auwal Mosque, the first and oldest in South Africa, and joined Waves for Change at the Monwabisi Beach to focus on mental health and take part in the organization’s “surf therapy.”
Baby Archie made his first public appearance on the third day of the royal tour of Africa, meeting Archbishop Desmond Tutu alongside his parents. The youngest royal was seen wearing light blue H&M overalls, while his mother chose a printed Club Monaco dress.
Later in the day, the Duchess of Sussex joined a group of female entrepreneurs who shared their journeys to success.
As Markle and Archie stayed in South Africa, Prince Harry traveled solo to Botswana where he joined a group of school children to plant trees in the Chobe National Park. The following day, Prince Harry visited the Kasane Health Post to support young people affected by HIV/AIDs. He then worked with Elephants Without Borders to continue his support of conservation efforts.
Prince Harry then traveled to Angola where he followed in his mother, Princess Diana’s, footsteps, visiting a de-mining site with The Halo Trust.
“It’s incredibly emotional to follow in the footsteps of my mother,” he said in an Instagram post. “If 20 years ago she hadn’t done what she did, this would still be a minefield. To see this as a thriving community is amazing.”
Prince Harry then traveled to Malawi, first meeting a group of women who attended school through the campaign for female education. He then paid his respect to guardsman Matthew Talbot, who died earlier this year while on an anti-poaching mission with the British army.
While Prince Harry was traveling, Markle stayed back in South Africa to continue working with female rights causes. She first visited the site where 19-year-old student, Uyinene Mrwetyana was murdered last month to pay her respects and show solidarity for those fighting against gender-based violence.
On the ninth day of the Africa royal tour, Markle visited the University of Johannesburg where she announced four scholarships for students from different commonwealth countries and participated in a round table discussion on advancements in the education sector.
On the last day of their Africa royal tour, Prince Harry and Markle reunited in Johannesburg, meeting young entrepreneurs at the Tembisa township’s Youth Employment Service hub, where both royals gave speeches.
“I remember being a young girl watching TV and seeing what was happening in the world, and frankly, often feeling despair,” Markle said. “When you constantly see and hear negativity, it can be overwhelming. You can feel powerless and lost, you can feel different, confused, or like you just don’t belong.”
What is on Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Africa itinerary?
The royal couple revealed more details for their official trip on Instagram, stating they will be focusing on a number of issues important to them, including community, grassroots leadership, women’s and girl’s rights, mental health, HIV/AIDS and the environment.
In South Africa, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will be meeting with Archbishop Desmond Tutu and will join the charitable organization Waves for Change at the Monwabisi Beach. They will also be meeting with The Lunchbox Fund, which provides meals to schools in the county’s rural areas.
Prince Harry will also be continuing the charitable work of his late mother, Princess Diana, in Angola by working with British charity Halo Trust in its effort to remove landmines and debris left by war.
As president of African Parks — a conservation organization — Prince Harry will be working on wildlife protection and sustainable tourism in Malawi. He will also be introducing the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy, a partnership with Namibia, Botswana and Angola to protect wildlife around the Okavango Delta.
While Prince Harry travels to other countries, Markle will stay in South Africa to work with local organizations to promote women’s and girl’s rights.
Why are Prince Harry and Meghan Markle traveling to Africa?
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex both have a special link to the continent, with the couple famously traveling to Botswana early in their relationship in 2016 and again for Markle’s 36th birthday in 2017. Markle’s wedding ring also includes a diamond mined from the country — in addition to two diamonds from Princess Diana’s private collection.
Through her charitable work, Princess Diana had also made multiple visits to Africa. In 1997, she met with late South African president Nelson Mandela to launch a joint initiative to combat HIV/AIDS in the country just months before her death.
Princess Diana was famously photographed walking through an active landmine area in Angola during the same year while working with Halo Trust, the organization that Prince Harry is currently working with.
Prince Harry has made countless trips to Africa over the years, even referring to the continent as a “second home” in the couple’s initial Instagram post. He made his first trip to Africa at 13 years old with Prince Charles to South Africa, where the young prince met the Spice Girls.
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