Harry and Meghan to mark special anniversary this weekend ahead of third California Christmas

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will be celebrating Christmas in the US after reportedly rejecting the King's invitation to join the Royal Family at Sandringham

Harry and Meghan to mark special anniversary ahead of third California Christmas
(Image credit: Getty Images / Chris Jackson)

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will celebrate a relationship milestone this week – the anniversary of their first public outing as a couple. 

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle made their debut outing as a couple six years ago this week, after attending a play in London on December 15, 2016. 

The festive date marked the first time the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were photographed together in public and is largely considered to be a defining moment in the media's fixation on their romance. 

The couple reportedly got last-minute tickets to see the award-winning The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time in the West End, having already picked out a Christmas tree together in the UK capital. 

At the time, Meghan and Harry had been dating for about six months and were pursuing a transatlantic relationship. It's understood that the VIP actor had flown from Canada to England during a break from filming the legal drama, Suits, to spend quality time with her future husband. She would go on to leave the NBC show in 2018 to marry Prince Harry and become a full-time member of the Royal Family. 

Harry and Meghan

(Image credit: Getty)

The Duke of Sussex reportedly hosted Meghan at his Kensington Palace cottage during her visit, which lasted a week and fell just before the Christmas holidays. 

The Duchess did not stay for the Royal Family's traditional party at Sandringham House, however. It's understood that she returned to North America just before the festivities at Norfolk kicked off, having likely committed to other engagements with her US-based family and friends. It has also been speculated that Meghan wasn't invited to join Harry to Sandringham because unmarried partners are usually not welcome at the annual event. 

"It is not a moment to bring girlfriends. It would be too stressful. They all have their own in-jokes, their own little traditions," royal expert Ingrid Seward told the Daily Mail

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, Duke and Duchess of Sussex leave after a service of thanksgiving for the reign of Queen Elizabeth II at St Paul's Cathedral in London, Friday, June 3, 2022

(Image credit: Getty Images /Matt Dunham - WPA Pool)

It's understood that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will be spending Christmas this year in California with their two children, Archie, 3, and one-year-old Lilibet, for the third year in a row. 

The Sussexes' relationship with their British relatives has been tense ever since their high-profile withdrawal from the Royal Family in January 2020, and with the release of their new Netflix documentary, Harry & Meghan, it looks like the conflict is only about to escalate. 

In the latest trailer for the Netflix docuseries, Meghan Markle claims she was 'fed to the wolves' after she married Prince Harry. Harry is also heard accusing the Firm of failing to protect him and his wife while also being willing to 'lie' for his older brother, Prince William

The second three episodes of the series will land on Netflix on Thursday morning. 

Emma Dooney
News and lifestyle writer

Emma is a Lifestyle News Writer for Goodto. Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, she mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.