Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to mini-moon in Ireland after wedding

Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancée, US actress Meghan Markle walk into Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland on February 13, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Jane Barlow (Photo credit should read JANE BARLOW/AFP/Getty Images)

Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle are planning a 'mini-moon' in Ireland.

Arrangements are being put in place for the royal couple to visit in the weeks after their wedding, although it will likely not be the official honeymoon.

Sources tell the Irish Independent that they are likely to take part in a series of engagements over two days.

It will be the second royal visit of the summer, as Harry's father Prince Charles, and his wife Camilla, are expected in late April or early May.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit Millennium Point to celebrate International Women's Day on March 8, 2018 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Ian Vogler - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit Millennium Point to celebrate International Women's Day on March 8, 2018 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Ian Vogler - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

The prince and American former actress are due to get married on May 19 in St George's Chapel, on the grounds of Windsor Castle, outside London. Their honeymoon has been a closely guarded secret but sources indicated a trip to Dublin is pencilled in for shortly after the nuptials.

"It will possibly be the first foreign trip after their wedding," said a source.

The publicity around such a visit could prove helpful in Anglo-Irish relations at a time when Brexit has created a strain between the two governments.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit Millennium Point to celebrate International Women's Day on March 8, 2018 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Ian Vogler - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle visit Millennium Point to celebrate International Women's Day on March 8, 2018 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Ian Vogler - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

The British Embassy was not in a position to comment last night.

Details of royal trips are generally kept very tight until shortly before the event due to security concerns. Harry has never visited Ireland before but Meghan spent time here as an ambassador for the One Young World summit in 2014.

Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancée, US actress Meghan Markle walk into Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland on February 13, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Jane Barlow (Photo credit should read JANE BARLOW/AFP/Getty Images)
Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancée, US actress Meghan Markle walk into Edinburgh Castle, during a visit to Scotland on February 13, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Jane Barlow (Photo credit should read JANE BARLOW/AFP/Getty Images)

The itinerary for their visit in June or July is only in the early stages but it is believed they will just stay for one night.

This country has become a favourite destination for Charles and Camilla in recent years. Last May, the couple undertook a three-day tour, which included stops in Kilkenny and the Curragh. They also attended a ceremony to honour Irish soldiers who died in the 1916 Rising and World War I, as well as visiting the grave of Michael Collins in Glasnevin Cemetery.

Their upcoming visit is again expected to include a number of events outside of the capital.

However, sources say the younger royals are "urbanites" who are likely to be base themselves in the capital.

Since being unveiled as a royal bride-to-be, Meghan has accompanied Harry on a string of public outings.

A source said it is not yet clear whether there will be any public 'meet and greets' during their time in Ireland but it has become a common feature of their engagements.

Their wedding will be a very public event, with TV cameras allowed inside the church and more than 2,000 members of the public invited to watch the carriage procession.

The two royal visits will come before Pope Francis's attendance at the World Meeting of Families in Dublin, which will be held between August 21 and 26. He is expected to say Mass in the Phoenix Park and possibly make a historic journey to Northern Ireland.

Prince Harry's fiancee, US actress Meghan Markle smiles after attending a Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey in central London
Prince Harry's fiancee, US actress Meghan Markle smiles after attending a Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey in central London

The combination of high-profile guests will require significant planning by An Garda Siochana in the coming months.

Gardai foiled a plan by two men to carry out an operation including explosives during Charles's previous State visit in 2015.

Independent.ie