Short on ceremony, long on substance. That’s the verdict of BBC royal correspondent Jonny Dymond on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s official visit to Morocco. Every event, he says, was designed to fit with their passions and promote their causes. Here are some of the best pictures of them during the three-day trip.
The visit is the couple’s last before their baby is due to arrive in April or May and the duchess was inundated with good wishes at every turn. She was given a traditional henna tattoo – designed to bring her unborn child good luck – by a student at the Education For All centre in the Atlas mountains. The centre provides classes for girls from rural areas whose families cannot afford their education.
The duke and duchess also watched mixed-sex teams at the education centre play five-a-side football – and Meghan chatted, in French, to one of the goalkeepers. She later told the students: “We are very proud of all of you. You are such good role models.”
The duchess received a traditional rosewater greeting at a reception at the British ambassador’s residence. She used her speech at the event to spread a message of female empowerment, telling the audience: “Women have to challenge everywhere in the world.”
There were lighter moments on the trip too. The couple sampled some Moroccan cuisine, cooked by Moha Fedal, who hosts the North African nation’s version of MasterChef. He told them: “Come with your baby and I will cook for all three.” At the same event, children made Moroccan pancakes using a recipe from a cookbook launched by Meghan to support families affected by the Grenfell Tower fire.
On their final day, the royal pair visited an equestrian centre to learn more about the country’s efforts to use horses in therapy for children with special needs. There they met Ekram, aged 20, who has Down’s Syndrome. She told them: “I love the connection with the horses, it already makes me feel relaxed and more confident.” Meghan replied: “Wow, you’re very impressive. What an accomplished lady.”
The visit ended with a tea ceremony hosted by King Mohammed VI at a royal palace in Sale, near Rabat. Prince Harry presented the the Moroccan monarch with a letter from the Queen.
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