Prince Harry arrived back in Los Angeles a day before his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II marked her 95th birthday on Wednesday.
The Duke of Sussex had been in the UK for one week, where he spent most of the time quarantining at Frogmore Cottage before attending the funeral of his grandfather, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, on Saturday.
The 36-year-old royal was seen in leaked photos landing at LAX airport on Tuesday afternoon local time, after leaving London several hours before.
Prince Harry flew back on an American Airlines flight. He was seen leaving the private terminal at LAX, which is specifically designed for celebrities and other wealthy and high-profile travelers.
He left in a black vehicle driven by a chauffeur and was later seen arriving back at the Montecito mansion where he currently resides with his wife, Meghan Markle, 39, and their son, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor.
It is believed that Prince Harry flew back to California to be present for Archie’s birthday — he will be two years old next month.
There had been speculation that Prince Harry might remain in the UK for his grandmother’s birthday.
However, Queen Elizabeth is not expected to have had lavish celebrations or seen many royal family members on her birthday. She will forgo the traditional birthday photo and gun salutes since she is still mourning the death of her husband of 73 years, Prince Philip — who died earlier this month at age 99.
The monarch is thought to be spending her birthday walking her dogs around Windsor Castle and seeing some of her family members who live close by such as her sons — Prince Andrew and Prince Edward — her granddaughter, Princess Eugenie, and her daughter-in-law, Sophie, Countess of Wessex.
To mark her 95th birthday, Buckingham Palace issued a statement from the Queen, who said she “very much appreciated” the “many messages of good wishes,” and noted that the family is still “in a period of great sadness.”
While many royal fans are slamming Prince Harry with comments such as he “can’t even stay a few extra days for an elderly gramma…. not surprised,” others are defending him.
Some backers of Meghan Markle‘s husband say they understand the reasons why he left the UK before the Queen’s birthday.
This person took to social media to explain the following: “I believe that Harry has developed an absolute intolerance for the royal life. I do not judge him. Everyone happens to want to turn the page and for reasons that are sometimes incomprehensible to others.”
A second commenter pointed to the fact that Prince Harry rushed back to California to self-isolate to eventually celebrate Archie’s second birthday on May 6th.
The royal fan penned this theory: “Doing the math, he quickly returned to be home on his child’s birthday as he has to quarantine.”
Another interesting remark read: “I understand that I would, have done like him, and certainly grandmother Elisabeth understands it too. There are so many who hate them because they have the courage to do what many of you can’t!!!!”
It has been reported that Prince Harry feels that he left the UK with the impression that he failed to repair his relationships with Prince Charles and Prince William after things hit rock bottom due to his controversial interview with Oprah Winfrey.
A royal source told The Mirror: “Harry didn’t expect everything to be completely back to normal, but his feeling after seeing his family was there is a lot of ground to make up. Whether that is harder or easier to do on the other side of the world remains to be seen. There is a lot of distrust in the camp, and everything is still very, very raw.”
Prince Harry is set to return to the UK in the summer to join Prince William in paying tribute to their late mother, Princess Diana, and he plans to use that opportunity to repair his relationship with the royal family.