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Prince Louis' birthday portraits have royal watchers all saying the same thing

Happy birthday to the young royal!

Prince Louis celebrates his fourth birthday on Saturday, and to mark the occasion, new portraits, taken by his mum the Duchess of Cambridge, have been released.

MORE: Prince Louis is turning 4! See the young royal's milestone moments in photos

The youngster looked in his element in the pictures, which were taken during the Easter break, as he enjoyed time on the beach - and he appeared to have inherited his parents' love of sports, as he prepared for a barefoot sprint across the sand in one image and brandished a cricket ball in two others.

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WATCH: Duchess Kate reveals the difficulty in parenting Prince Louis

According to royal watchers this wasn't the only way that he was taking after his parents, as many noticed the striking similarities between him and his father, Prince William, with a few eagle-eyed ones seeing a resemblance with grandfather Michael Middleton.

READ: Why this Saturday will be a double celebration for Prince Louis and Prince George

MORE: The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's holiday hobby they've passed on to their children

One said: "Aahh, he looks a spitting image of his Dad in the first photo! Happy 4th Birthday little man," while another added: "Is that Louis or William as a 4 year old???"

A third posted: "He looks like grandfather Middleton," and a fourth commented: "Looks so much like his maternal grandfather!" while a fifth penned: "Congratulations Prince Louis, he has grown so much and is identical to his brother, Prince George, they look like twins!"

In the snaps, the fifth-in-line to the throne wore a sweet, checked shirt and shorts, and a soft grey sweater with colourful stars on the front, and looked just like any other young boy of his age ready for a seaside adventure.

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Many thought the youngster resembled his father

The stunning beaches of North Norfolk have long been the playground of young royals, with the Queen taking her own children when they were younger to enjoy the fresh sea air there while at Sandringham.

READ: Why the Cambridge children get day off school on their birthdays

GALLERY: 15 photos that show Prince Charles' close bond with his grandchildren

And with Holkham Beach just a half-hour drive from their Anmer Hall home in Norfolk, William and Kate have been regular visitors over the years with Prince George, eight, Princess Charlotte, who turns seven on 2 May, and four-year-old Prince Louis.

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Others said he resembled his grandfather

Last year, to mark their 10th wedding anniversary, the royal couple shared a glimpse into their idyllic family life, releasing a video of themselves and their children climbing the sand dunes there, and cuddling up together on the beach as they looked out to sea, toasting marshmallows over a fire.

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