The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are planning a visit to Ireland in March.
News of the tour, which reportedly will include stops in Dublin and Cork, comes as Buckingham Palace prepares to undergo a “period of transition” as Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, step back as senior royals and move to Canada.
The Daily Mail reports that palace officials may be hoping William and Kate’s visit to the Emerald Isle will serve as a distraction to the ongoing “Megxit” crisis.
Plans for the Cambridges’ tour is still in the early stages and is not likely to be officially confirmed until several days beforehand, but officials from the Department of Foreign Affairs are finalizing the arrangements, according to The Sun.
In 2011, Queen Elizabeth became the first reigning British monarch to visit the Republic of Ireland in 100 years. She and Prince Philip famously toured Cork’s English Market during the visit.
Since then, other members of the Royal family have traveled to Ireland. Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles, the Duchess of Cornwall, have visited Ireland five times since 2015. Meghan and Harry took their first official trip to Ireland in 2019.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have visited Northern Ireland twice, most recently in February 2016. The upcoming spring visit will be the couple’s first trip to the Republic of Ireland.
William and Kate are expected to take part in a series of engagements as part of the two-day visit.