The royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle was an extravagant affair. The royal family spared no expense to ensure the wedding was a feast for the eyes. Broadcast live worldwide, we watched in awe as Meghan Markle left her life in Hollywood behind for one in England as royalty.
The lavish affair began hours before vows were exchanged. Cameras were there to capture every guest entering and leaving. Here are the best photos, along with interesting facts about the wedding, for you to marvel at.
Officially Husband and Wife
This is one of the first official portraits of the newlyweds together with Prince Harry and Meghan both boasting big smiles as photographer Alexi Lubomirski captures them on the steps of Windsor Castle.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: The official photos of the royal wedding contain as many as four generations in one photo! Between Queen Elizabeth and the royal children, that’s a lot of personality in one picture.
The Official Wedding Photos Are Released
On May 21, 2018, the official royal wedding photographs were released and shared on the official Instagram account of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. The portraits were taken by Alexi Lubomirski and show the newlyweds alongside the Queen and Prince Philip, Prince Charles and Camilla, Prince William and Catherine, Meghan’s mother Doria Ragland, and her bridal party.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Following the ceremony, the royal wedding portraits were shot inside Windsor Castle in the Green Drawing Room. Both the Queen and Doria wore green to complement the room.
Husband And Wife
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and the Duchess of Sussex leave St. George’s Chapel after their wedding ceremony. They are greeted and congratulations by thousands of spectators while the entire world watched from their televisions. They then took a carriage procession from St. George’s Chapel through Windsor before returning to take pictures.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Markle’s ring was fashioned from a piece of Welsh Gold, gifted by the Queen. Prince Harry’s was created from platinum with a textured finish. Both rings were crafted in the Cleave workshop, were carried to the chapel by William, the Duke of Cambridge.
A Vow Omitted
The picture that will melt a thousand cold hearts, here is Prince Harry standing at the altar with Meghan Markle. During her vows, Markle refused to say she would “obey” to her husband, following a tradition set by Princess Diana.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: When Princess Diana married Prince Charles in 1981, she famously became the first royal female to reject the saying. Since then, no royal female has said it. Markle’s decision to follow tradition was no surprise. She is an outspoken feminist who has worked with One World Vision in Dubai to learn about the challenges women face there.
Meghan’s Father Brought The Drama
Meghan Markle made a statement in choosing to walk down the aisle alone for most of the way. There was much speculation about who would give her away after the news broke that her father, Thomas Markle, would not be attending the wedding due to health reasons.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Markle’s father caused pre-wedding drama after he reportedly admitted to receiving payment to pose for tabloid pictures that were sold internationally. At first, people believed that that is why he chose not to attend his daughter’s wedding, but sources revealed later that he was in recovery from a heart problem.
The Groom Cried First
Prince Harry reportedly was choked up throughout the ceremony, especially while he and his bride stood at the High Altar of St. George’s Chapel. The couple featured the hymn “Guide Me, O Thy Great Redeemer,” which was also sung at Princess Diana’s funeral over 20 years ago. Prince Harry was only 12 years old when the tragedy happened. He was seen tearing as the hymn was sung during his wedding.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Prince Harry isn’t the only one who paid tribute to his mother with that hymn. In 2011, Prince William and Duchess Kate also chose to have the hymn featured at their nuptials.
Something Old Or Something Borrowed?
For Meghan Markle, it’s both. Markle wore Queen Mary’s diamond bandeau tiara to hold her veil in place during the ceremony. The tiara was lent to her by Queen Elizabeth herself.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: The tiara that Markle borrowed dates back to 1932. Ten diamonds make up the center brooch, which itself was gifted to Queen Mary in 1893 when she was still a Princess. The brooch was given to her by the County of Lincoln when she married Prince George.
The Dress To Top All Wedding Gowns
Ms. Meghan Markle arrives at her wedding to Prince Harry at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. She is greeted by the priest upon entering the chapel with her pageboys Brian Mulroney and John Mulroney holding her veil.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Meghan’s veil was designed at her request by Givenchy’s Claire Waight Keller and featured flora from every single Commonwealth country. This way, there was a little part of every community visible on her dress. It was a nob to all of the people in the UK and Meghan’s willingness to become the Duchess of Sussex.
The Sneaky Way Meghan Incorporated Something Blue Into Her Wedding Look
Incorporating something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue on your wedding day is tradition — but fans couldn’t quite put their finger on what Meghan’s “something blue” was. In her first interview as a royal, Meghan finally revealed the sneaky was she snuck in something blue, saying that she incorporated a “piece of blue fabric sewn into her veil, taken from a dress she wore on her first date with Harry.” How sweet!
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Meghan also incorporated another touching surprise in her wedding dress. The now-royal had her veil embroidered with 53 flowers from the Commonwealth countries. In the documentary Queen of the World, Meghan says, “I knew that it would be a fun surprise as well for my now husband, who didn’t know.”
The Queen Stands Out
Queen Elizabeth wore a standout green dress with a matching coat to her grandson’s wedding. The ensemble was designed by Stuart Parvin, who has been dressing the Queen since 2007. The Queen also wore her favorite three-strand pearl necklace and the Richmond Brooch. Queen Elizabeth inherited the brooch from her grandmother, Queen Mary.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Queen Mary received the Richmond Brooch in 1893 as a wedding present when she married King George V. The brooch was given to Queen Mary by the people of Richmond, hence its name.
Members Of The Royal Family
Outside of the chapel, members of the royal family wave to fans after the ceremony of Meghan and Harry. Starting on the left, includes Lady Louise Windsor, Sophie, Countess of Wessex, James, Viscount Severn, Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Michael of Kent, Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and Princess Anne, Princess Royal.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Meghan Markle made history when she became the first royal to ever begin her wedding procession alone before being joined by Prince Charles at the Quire. This was seen as a feminist statement to show her independence.
Elton John Appearance
Musician Sir Elton John and David Furnish are seen leaving St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle after the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry. Elton John was one of the many celebrities that were seen in attendance at the wedding.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Meghan Markle’s bouquet also had significant meaning. Harry had picked all of the flowers himself which he made sure to have Forget-Me-Nots, which were Princess Diana’s favorite flowers. This was one of the many nods to Princess Diana throughout the wedding.
Prince Harry waits outside of St. George’s Chapel with his best man Prince William, Duke of Cambridge for Harry’s wedding later that day. Prince William is the elder son of Charles, Prince of Wales and Princess Diana. He is second in the line of succession after his father.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Both Meghan and Harry received new titles. Just hours before the wedding, Queen Elizabeth II announced that Harry was now His Royal Highness the Duke of Sussex, in turn, this also made Meghan Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Sussex.
David Beckham And Friends
Victoria Beckham, professional English football player David Beckham, and Jonny Wilkinson arrive at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms. Meghan Markle They wave to photographers and fans as they make their way to the chapel at Windsor, Castle.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: There were more than just a few celebrities in attendance. This included Oprah Winfrey, Priyanka Chopra, Serena Williams, Tom Hardy, George and Amal Clooney, and other of Markle’s Suits co-stars.
The Girls Arrive In Style
Abigail Spencer and Priyanka Chopra arrive at the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms. Meghan Markle at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle. Abagail Spencer is an American actress known for her work on the show Mad Men and as a co-star to Markle on the show Suits. Priyanka Chopra is an Indian actress, singer, and film producer. She is also a major philanthropist and has won numerous awards for her work.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: After Prince Charles walked Meghan up to the altar, the father and son shared a nice moment when Harry looked at him and said: “Thank you, pa”. This moment had the crowd shedding some tears.
The Couple Head Off Into The Sunset
Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, leave Windsor Castle in an Ascot Landau carriage. With the royal wedding over, they head to Frogmore House for a more intimate private party for dinner, speeches, and dancing.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Over 2,000 members of the public were invited to the Windsor Castle grounds for the wedding. After the wedding, only 200 of the new royal couple’s closest friends were invited back to Frogmore House for the lavish party that included a three-course feast and heartfelt speeches.
Harry’s Ex Almost Didn’t Come
Here’s Prince Harry’s ex-girlfriend Chelsy Davy arriving at Windsor Castle with a date. As you’ve already read, Megan Markle was happy to invite Prince Harry’s ex to the wedding. But Davy, who was Prince Harry’s most serious girlfriend before Markle, was only invited to the ceremony and not the second reception.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: According to Vanity Fair, Davy and Harry had one last phone call before the nuptials. “It was their final call,” the source said, “a parting call in which they both acknowledged Harry was moving on.”
Clooney In The Building
Amal and George Clooney arrive at Windsor Castle before the ceremony. While the couple just wanted to be at the historic moment of the wedding, the Internet was convinced that he was up to something shady because of his role in the new Oceans movie franchise.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Prince Harry’s ex-girlfriends attended the wedding. Both Cressida Bonas and Chelsy Davis were there. Meghan had previously talked with US Weekly and said that she was completely okay with them being there.
The Queen Arrives
Queen Elizabeth II arrives at St. George’s Chapel leading up to the wedding ceremony. She is the longest-lived and longest reigning British monarch as well as the world’s longest-reigning queen regnant and female head of state. Support for the monarchy remains high in the UK with the wedding further boosting popularity.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Leading up to the wedding, Meghan Markle participated in 26 royal engagements before being officially married. Harry did this to show off his future bride and to help prepare her for what is going to come.
Prince Charles Takes His Seat
Prince Charles and Camilla take their seat in preparation for the ceremony to begin. Camilla is the current Duchess of Cornwall and is the second wife of Prince Charles. Before Camilla, Prince Charles was married to Princess Diana. The couple married in 2005 after years of courtship.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Speaking to guests at the wedding, Prince Charles talked about his memories of Prince Harry as a baby, referring to his son as “darling old Harry.” Prince Harry is the second son Prince Charles has seen wed. In 2011, his eldest son Prince William married Kate Middleton. The couple has three children together.
The Spencers Arrive In Style
Dressed to the nines to attend the Royal Wedding, Lady Eliza Spencer, Louis Spencer, Lady Kitty Spencer, and Victoria Lockwood are stunning in their attire. Lady Eliza, the youngest daughter of David Manners, is an aspiring songstress and socialite. Louis Spencer will eventually become the Earl of Spencer.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Sky broadcast the Royal Wedding live in universal high definition. They became the first company to broadcast a Royal Wedding in 4K and needed to lay out 27 km of cable to do so. The picture offered four times the amount of pixels as regular telecast.
The Groom’s Dad And Bride’s Mother
After the wedding, Prince Charles and the mother of the bride, Doria Ragland, departed the venue together. Ragland gave birth to Meghan Markle while being married to Tom Markle. They divorced when Meghan was six-years-old but continued to raise their only daughter together.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Prince Harry loves his new mother in law. When asked by BBC about Markle’s mother he said simply, “Her mum’s amazing.” She’s not just Meghan Markle’s “mum” anymore. The wedding officially makes Harry a member of the Markle family, just as Meghan is now a member of the Royal Family.
The Royal Family Watches
The Royal Family take in the Royal Wedding from their seats. To the right of Prince Charles is his oldest son Prince William. To his left is his wife, followed by Kate Middleton, the Duke of York, and Princess Beatrice. The Duke of York is the eighth of his kind. The title was created in the 14th century and is reserved for the second son of British Monarchs.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Parking spaces at the review ground for the Royal Wedding cost 30 euros. That converts to just over $41. Considering sports in the United States can cost $100 for parking, that sounds like a great deal to us!
The Middletons Arrive
Kate Middleton’s family, led by Carole Middleton and son James Middleton, arrive at the Royal Wedding in the picture above. Carole and her husband Michael (second from right) have been married for 38 years. They met while working for British Airways as cabin crew members.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Carole Middleton wore a Catherine Walker dress to the wedding. The designer was a favorite of Princess Diana’s. Middleton wore another dress from Catherine Walker to Kate Middleton’s wedding and well as Pippa Middleton’s wedding in 2017.
A Rugby Controversy
James Haskell and Chloe Madeley arrive at the Royal Wedding. Haskell, a member of Aviva Premiership Rugby team Wasps RFC, skipped a match against the Saracens to attend the Royal Wedding. England’s national captain criticized the move, “He should be here with his teammates. I’m sure Harry wouldn’t mind, he loves his rugby anyway.”
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Teammates have been quick to defend Haskell, who was ruled out of the game with a foot injury anyway. One teammate said, “The Royal Wedding is a once in a lifetime opportunity. He’s supported the players as much as he can and he shouldn’t be criticised too much.”
Princess Charlotte of Cambridge walks down the steps of the chapel with her mother Catherine Duchess of Cambridge after the wedding of Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Meghan’s dad was not at the wedding. Unfortunately, he had recently had heart surgery and his health did not allow him to travel. However, he did comment that “My baby looks beautiful, and she looks very happy,” he said. “I wish I were there, and I wish them all my love and all happiness.”
The Bridesmaid Pull Up
Here is Benita Litt arriving at the wedding with her daughters Remy and Rylan. Remy and Rylan are Meghan Markle’s goddaughters and appeared as bridesmaids during the wedding. Princess Charlotte was Meghan’s final bridesmaid, as he and Prince Harry agreed to use family instead of friends for support.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Prince Harry asked Prince William to be his best man, a tradition not usually reserved for royals. At royal weddings, the groom is normally given supporters in place of a best man. When Prince William married Kate Middleton, however, he broke the tradition. Now Prince Harry has returned the favor.
Celebrities enjoyed the wedding as much as family. Here are George Clooney, Idris Elba, and Serena Williams enjoying the festivities together. After the reception, the couple’s closest friends, including Clooney, were invited to a private party for dinner and dancing. The 200 person event was held at Frogmore House.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: The menu for the luxurious dinner included pork belly and Pol Roger Champagne. The party included typical speeches and dances, as well as non-typical drinking games. At one point guests were spotted playing beer-pong, a game usually reserved for college parties, not Royal weddings.
Mother Of The Bride
Doria Ragland, Meghan Markle’s mother, is seen here riding in a car along the Long Walk with her daughter after the wedding ceremony. Ms. Ragland must have been wrought with many emotions at this moment, having just witnessed her only daughter get married in a fairytale wedding.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: When Markle’s engagement to Prince Harry was officially made public, Ragland released this statement with Markle’s father: “Our daughter has always been a kind and loving person. To see her union with Harry, who shares the same qualities, is a source of great joy for us as parents.”
A National Affair
This is what the post-wedding procession outside of Windsor Castle looked like. Thousands of members of the public lined up to watch the newlyweds ride by in the Ascot Landau carriage. Some people camped out for days around St. George’s chapel just to witness this moment.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: The people on the streets weren’t the only ones excited about the royal wedding. People all over the world tuned in to watch Prince Harry and Megan Markle tie the knot. A reported 29 million viewers across six television networks in the U.S. alone tuned in to watch the royal wedding.
Making Her Presence Known
English actress Cressida Bonas also attended the royal wedding. This raised some eyebrows because she is also an ex-girlfriend of Prince Harry. Bonas was all smiles when she arrived at the event in a bright multi-colored dress from Eponine London.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Bonas dated Prince Harry for around two years after his split from Chelsy Davy. Prince Harry’s relationships with both Davy and Bonas reportedly didn’t work out because they couldn’t handle living such a public life. Even though things didn’t work out, they’ve obviously stayed good friends with the Prince.
This Event Takes The Cake
This was the wedding cake made by Claire Ptak, who owns Violet Cakes in East London. The newlyweds requested a lemon elderflower cake with a fresh buttercream frosting. The cake was also decorated with fresh flowers to evoke the flavors and feelings of spring.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Claire Ptak is an American baker who set up shop in London. Having grown up in California, Ptak uses seasonal and organic ingredients in her cakes and pastries, making use of local flora and produce. This is probably why Markle interviewed Ptak for The Tig and why she chose her to make the cake.
This Chapel Holds A Lot Of Memories
Newlyweds Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, are seen here exiting St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle through the West Door. The chapel holds certain significance to the couple, especially since it is where Prince Harry and his cousin Eugenie were christened.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle was also the venue of choice for someone else close to Prince Harry. His father, Prince Charles, marrying Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, there in 2005 after their register office ceremony.
Oprah Almost Did What?!
Oprah looks pretty excited to be at the royal wedding! Oprah got to break out this hat by Philip Treacy, which she’s had in her closet since 2005. Her lovely dress was made by Stella McCartney, who whipped up the piece the night before the big day!
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Stella McCartney is also the designer behind Megan Markle’s evening reception gown and Amal Clooney’s yellow ensemble. Oprah didn’t realize that her original dress was going to photograph too white — and you should never wear white to a wedding unless you’re the bride! Luckily, McCartney came up with this pale pink number for Oprah.
All The Honored Guests
Here is a photo of David Henson and his wife Hayley arriving on the grounds of Windsor Castle. David Henson is a British parasport athlete whose legs were amputated during his service with the Royal Engineers. Now he represents Britain at Paralympic competitions around the world, including Prince Harry’s Invictus Games.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: In addition to close friends and family, those who received personal invitations to the royal wedding included charitable members of the community. Henson’s daughter Emily made headlines in 2017 when she was adorably caught by Prince Harry after stealing his popcorn.
She Was There In Spirit
Community members put up homemade signs and posters in celebration of the big day. This woman made a sign in tribute to the late Princess Diana, Prince Harry’s mother. She would have been 57 years old at the time of the royal wedding in 2018.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: There was noticeably an empty seat next to Prince William during the ceremony and many believe that Prince Harry left it open in honor of his mother, Princess Diana. But according to People, the seat was left open so that Queen Elizabeth could have a clear view from her spot in the second row.
A Royal Family Affair
Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice arrived with their father, Prince Andrew, to the wedding of their cousin. Prince Andrew is the Duke of York and the third child of Queen Elizabeth. He is seventh in the line of succession to the throne, while his daughters are eighth and ninth.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: It looks like this won’t be the only royal wedding this year! Months after Prince Harry’s engagement announcement, Princess Eugenie announced her engagement to fiancé Jack Brooksbank. They are reportedly also having their wedding at St. George’s Chapel in the fall.
A Special Tribute
It was reported that Lady Jane Fellowes (far left), the late Princess Diana’s sister, gave a reading of “The Song of Solomon” during the wedding. It was a great way to honor Princess Diana’s memory on the special occasion, with the couple saying that they were honored and “keen to involve [Harry’s] mother’s family in his wedding.”
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Before he officially backed out, Thomas Markle was supposed to give the bride’s speech for the wedding. Instead, it was reported that Meghan Markle would give the speech herself.
A Piece Of History
As you’ve previously read, over 2,000 members of the public were invited to Windsor Castle for the royal wedding. All of those people received these special gift bags which included a commemorative magnet, a chocolate coin, a tub of shortbread, a postcard, and a coupon to the Windsor Castle gift shop. Close family and friends who were inside the chapel didn’t receive gift bags.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Some people have already put their gift bags up for sale online. One listing on eBay has 53 bids and was last seen going for £10,000, which is over $13,000!
Leaving In Luxury
The newlywedded Duke and Duchess of Sussex left Windsor Castle in an E-Type Jaguar following the end of their wedding ceremonies. Instead of jetting off to their honeymoon right away, the couple planned to start their first week as husband and wife getting straight to their royal duties. Their first public appearance as husband and wife was at Prince Charles’ 70th birthday garden party in Buckingham Palace.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: It is rumored that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will have their honeymoon in Africa, which is very close to both of their hearts as it is where they both got to know each other.
An Important Visit
One place that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle plan on visiting before their honeymoon is Mexico to see Meghan’s father. Thomas Markle has retired in Mexico and reportedly couldn’t make it to the wedding due to health problems. Meghan is reportedly very concerned about her father’s health and if they go, it will be the first time that Prince Harry meets his father-in-law.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: A lot of the controversy surrounding Thomas Markle is due to the confusion over whether or not he would be there. Upon the official wedding announcement, he was slated to walk Meghan down the aisle. Then he changed his mind not once, but twice in the months leading up to the big day.
Their Presence Raised Eyebrows
Rugby player James Haskell arrived with his fiancée, Instagram fitness guru Chloe Madeley. For one, Madeley broke protocol by deciding to wear an incredibly low-cut dress to the event. Haskell and Prince Harry have reportedly become friends after Harry became the Vice Patron of the Rugby Football Union in 2016.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Haskell caused a bit of controversy because he was at the wedding and not at the game of his club, the Wasps. They lost in the semi-finals to the Aviva Premiership against the Saracens that day.
In Anticipation Of The Big Day
Jars of Marmite were made to celebrate the royal wedding between Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle. Instead of ‘Marmite,’ these jars have ‘Meghan’ or ‘Harry’ emblazoned across the label.
Royal Wedding 2018 Fact: Marmite is a traditional British spread that is usually enjoyed on toast. Those who aren’t familiar with it are warned that it takes an acquired taste to truly appreciate it. Marmite is made from yeast extract and has a distinct, strong taste that people agree you either love or you hate.