Why Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Are Spending Their First Engagement Anniversary Apart
It's been exactly one year since Meghan Markle and Prince Harry announced their royal engagement to the world
The couple tied the knot in a fairy tale ceremony in May, attended several royal family events over the summer, embarked on their first major royal tour together this fall and announced they are expecting their first child in the spring.
But the newlyweds are spending the first anniversary of their historic engagement apart, as Harry concludes his two-day visit to Zambia on Tuesday. The 34-year-old royal, who has spoken about his love for Africa and has made several visits there with the Duchess of Sussex, is in Zambia on behalf of the Commonwealth (he’s the youth ambassador of the family of nations linked to the U.K.) and to meet with conservation group African Parks, of which he is president.
Harry made the trip solo, while Meghan, who is in her second trimester, remained at home, where she is busy preparing for the couple’s big move to Windsor.
The newlyweds are moving out of their home at Kensington Palace (where Prince William and Kate Middleton also live with their three children), and into Windsor Castle’s Frogmore Cottage, which is on the same grounds where their evening wedding party was held and where their engagement photos were taken last year.
Windsor, located about 30 miles west of London, is a “special place” for the couple, their spokesman says — and was, of course, the setting for their wedding in May.
Upon their engagement announcement last year, Harry’s father, Prince Charles, released the following statement via his office of Clarence House.
“His Royal Highness and Ms. Markle became engaged in London earlier this month. Prince Harry has informed Her Majesty The Queen and other close members of his family. Prince Harry has also sought and received the blessing of Ms. Markle’s parents.
The announcement was a historic one as it marked the first time a direct heir to the throne had been set to wed an American since King Edward VIII abdicated to marry Wallis Simpson in 1937. (Harry is sixth in line, behind his father, Prince Charles, William and Kate’s children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis.)
Soon after their engagement was announced, the couple released a stunning set of official portraits taken at Frogmore House on the grounds of Windsor Castle to celebrate the happy news.
During their high-speed, long-distance courtship, Harry and Meghan spent time together at each other’s respective homes in London and Toronto, where Meghan filmed Suits. They then made their home together at Nottingham Cottage on the grounds of Kensington Palace, where they have lived for the past year.
Harry and Meghan are now ready to start a new chapter in their new home, which they’ll move into “early next year,” PEOPLE confirms.