Prince William And Kate Middleton Set To Give Up Castle Life During Annual Royal Vacation

Royals, just like us, enjoy a nice summer vacation. Each year, the British royal family heads north to Scotland for their vacation at Balmoral. At Balmoral, the royal family spends their time like many others, hiking, grilling, and enjoying the outdoors. However, not many of us non-royals own a 50,000-acre estate with 150 buildings, including a castle with 52 bedrooms to use for their vacation. Balmoral was a favorite destination for Queen Elizabeth II; she went up there as a girl with her family, Prince Philip proposed there, and it was a place where she could relax and enjoy nature.

The queen passed away while at her beloved Balmoral, and approaching the one-year anniversary of her death, King Charles and Camilla, Queen Consort are making the annual family trip up to Scotland. This year, though, King Charles' summer vacation plans break a century-long royal tradition — he and Camilla will not be staying at Balmoral Castle, but rather at Birkhall, seven miles away. William and Catherine Middleton, Prince and Princess of Wales, are also taking their family up to Balmoral for the summer vacation, but, like King Charles, they won't be staying in the castle itself.

William and Kate have gone to the Balmoral cottage since university

Remember, Balmoral Castle has 52 bedrooms, so it's not like there isn't enough room for William and Catherine, Prince and Princess of Wales, and their three children. Still, they're opting to spend their Scottish vacation at Tam-Na-Ghar, their private cottage on the Balmoral estate. Prince William was gifted the three-bedroom cottage by the Queen Mother in the early 2000s, and it holds a lot of happy memories for William and Kate — they used to visit there while they were both students at St. Andrew's University. It's also remarkably private; there aren't even any modern public pictures of the house. So for a family that's so often in the public eye, it sounds like the perfect summer escape.

The cottage is near Birkhall, so Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis will be able to easily spend time with their grandpa. William has spoken before about wanting his father to spend more time with his grandkids, so this could be the perfect opportunity.

It could be a bittersweet visit as it may overlap with the first anniversary of the queen's death, and Balmoral is also where William and Prince Harry found out about their mother's death. William has noted some of the complicated feelings he has about Balmoral. "In short, Scotland is the source of some of my happiest memories. But also, my saddest," he said in a 2021 speech (via YouTube). Hopefully, the family can make more happy memories together there this year.