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Prince Harry's secret proposal to Meghan Markle – the truth revealed

The Duchess showed off her engagement ring for the first time in November 2017

prince harry meghan markle proposal
Rachel Avery
Homes Editor
27 November 2022
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It's been five years since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle delighted royal fans by announcing their engagement, but what followed was a lot of confusion about when and where King Charles III's son proposed.

DISCOVER: 23 spellbinding royal engagement rings: From Queen Queen Camilla's heirloom to Princess Anne's vibrant rock

On 27 November 2017, the couple stood in Kensington Palace's Sunken Garden to share their happy news with the press, with the former Suits actress showing off her sentimental engagement ring for the first time. At the time, Clarence House released a statement that revealed their plans to marry in Spring 2018, and added: "His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales is delighted to announce His Royal Highness and Ms. Markle became engaged in London earlier this month." So why have rumours circulated about a secret South Africa engagement?

WATCH: Relive Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's engagement interview

In a TV interview on that very day, the Prince revealed that he had popped the question to the American actress when they were roasting a chicken and having a cosy night in at their then-home, Nottingham Cottage, which is located within the grounds of Kensington Palace.

harry meghan engaged© Photo: Getty Images

The couple announced their engagement at Kensington Palace

However, many news outlets also reported that the magical proposal actually took place in Africa, a place that we know is very close to Prince Harry's heart. We also know that Meghan's precious engagement ring contains an ethically sourced diamond from Botswana.

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meghan engagement ring© Photo: Getty Images

Meghan's diamond was sourced in Africa

In Finding Freedom, the royal biography written by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand, the UK proposal is detailed in full, and regarding the Africa trip that made the couple "feel more connected than ever," well, this was where "Harry made his intentions very clear". So, the seed may have been sewn under the starry African skies, but the special down-on-one-knee moment was reserved for British soil.

prince harry meghan wedding z© Photo: Getty Images

The royal couple got married in 2018

Perhaps it was the lowkey location that meant the proposal came as a complete surprise for Meghan. In the same television interview, she said: "It was a surprise, and so sweet and very romantic," and to that Harry replied: "Yes, I think I managed to catch you by surprise."

Prince Harry's brother, Prince William, however, did decide to pop the question overseas and chose a stunning Kenyan backdrop to ask for Princess Kate's hand in marriage.

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