Here’s When The Queen Goes To Sandringham House, Windsor Castle, and Other Royal Residences

With many official and private royal residences in her possession, the queen has her pick of real estate. And, despite spending most of her time at her London and Windsor residences, the queen makes sure to visit her other royal abodes — including Sandringham House and Balmoral Castle — at least once a year.

Curious to know when the queen go to Sandringham, Balmoral, and other royal residences? Keep reading to find out.

Buckingham Palace
The queen stays at Buckingham Palace most of the time. | Dan Kitwood/ Getty Images

Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace is the queen and Prince Philip’s official London home. They typically stay in their private living quarters during the week but lately spend a lot more time away from the city at Windsor Castle. The London abode has served as the official residence of the monarch since 1837.

Sandringham House

Wondering when the queen goes to Sandringham House? Located in Norfolk, England, Sandringham House is where the royal family spends Christmas every year. The queen typically arrives a couple of weeks before the holiday so she can oversee the decorating, menus, and other holiday planning. While most of the family makes their way back to London — or to their countryside homes — after the holiday, the queen and Philip typically stay at Sandringham House until February.

Windsor Castle

You might know Windsor Castle as the place where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle said “I do,” but it’s more than just a family wedding venue. Located in the English county of Berkshire, Windsor Castle is one of the oldest inhabited castles in the world. Windsor Castle used to serve as the queen and Philip’s weekend home. However, now that they are older, they prefer to spend most of their time there. Rumor has it, Harry and Meghan married at Windsor Castle to accommodate Harry’s grandfather, who is 97-years-old.

Balmoral Castle in Scotland
The queen visits Balmoral Castle every summer. | Andrew Milligan/AFP/Getty Images

Balmoral Castle

Every summer, the queen packs her bags for Balmoral Castle. Located in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, the royals escape to the Scottish countryside for some much-needed time off between August and September. Unlike Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, Balmoral Castle is considered a private residence and was passed down to the queen from her father, King George VI.

According to royal experts, the family partakes in backyard barbecues, hunting, horseback riding, and long walks while visiting the estate. Charles and Camilla have a private home on the property, and the queen’s grandchildren also visit in the summer.

Holyrood Palace

In addition to their private Scottish abode, the queen and Philip also have an official residence located on Royal Mile in Edinburgh. Also known as the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the official royal residence has served as the official home of the King or Queen of Scots since the 16th century. At the beginning of every summer, the queen spends one week at Holyrood Palace. While there, she carries out official engagements and ceremonies, as well as state occasions and formal entertaining.

Hillsborough Castle

When the royal family — including the queen — has official business in Northern Ireland, they stay at Hillsborough Castle. Hillsborough Castle did not belong to England until 1922 when the Marquesses of Downshire sold the house to the British government. The Historic Royal Palaces have managed the property since 2014, and the queen and her family members stay in the mansion whenever they visit the region.

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