See Princess Diana, the Queen, Prince Charles and More in India
The Queen was the first British monarch to take the throne since India gained independence in 1947 (although as a member of the commonwealth, she is still recognized as a ceremonial head of state). She and Prince Philip traveled to the country 14 years later, in 1961. She changed up her typical mode of transport, riding a painted elephant during her visit to the city of Jaipur.
This visit was the first of three visits she has made to the country throughout her life so far. The second came in 1983 (for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting) and the third in 1997. When she arrived in India for the first time, she was welcomed by then-Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and nearly 3 million Indians, who celebrated the monarch's arrival and their independence at the Republican Day parade.
During her time in the country, the Queen addressed some diplomatic concerns as well, including the Jallianwala Bagh massacre of 1919. "It is no secret that their have been some difficult episodes in our past," she said of the tragedy in a speech during her visit. "But history cannot be rewritten, no matter however much we might sometimes wish otherwise. We must learn from the sadness and build on the gladness." The trip was filled with happy moments, too: Here, she blends right in a bright pink coat-and-dress ensemble during a visit to a model village in Jaipur – fittingly, it's nicknamed the "Pink City."
A little more than 30 years later, Prince Charles and Princess Diana visited India together – it was the same year they separated, and rumors were already swirling about a potential rift between the couple.
While Charles attended an architecture lunch 150 miles away, Diana visited the Taj Mahal solo – where she was photographed sitting alone in front of the mausoleum, a shot that would eventually become iconic. Prince William and Princess Kate are set visit the famous spot on their own visit.
Diana was famous for her ease around children, and her visit to India only provided more proof. At the Lallapet High School in Hyderabad, a girl in traditional dress sits on her lap.
At night, Diana attended a reception held in her honor waring the Spencer family tiara and a dress by Catherine Walker, one of her favorite designers.
She wore a garland around her neck during a visit to the Tamanana Special Needs Nursery School in Delhi.
The most recent royal visit to India was Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall's in 2013. The trip marked his eighth trip to the country, "He just loves coming here," former U.K. deputy high commissioner to India Mark Runacres said. It was a trip decades in the making, too: Before his marriage to Diana, he visited the Taj Mahal in 1980 and famously said "One day, I'll bring my wife here." On that 2013 trip, his words was fulfilled.
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