Prince Harry’s Friend Dame Jane Goodall Reveals He Wanted to Raise Son Archie in Africa

Instead, of course, the family ultimately settled down in California.

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor
(Image credit: Getty)

Prince Harry has long had an emotional connection to the continent of Africa, and, according to renowned primatologist and anthropologist (and Harry’s friend) Dame Jane Goodall, if the prince had it his way, he would have raised son Archie in Africa.

Before moving to Montecito, California from the U.K.—where Harry currently resides with wife Meghan Markle and their two children, Archie and Lilibet—the Duke of Sussex had dreams of moving to Africa, The Daily Mail’s Richard Eden reports, per Tatler.

“He wanted to bring Archie up in Africa, running barefoot with African children,” Goodall reportedly said.

Archie was born in the U.K. on May 6, 2019; by the end of that year the family of three had relocated to Canada and then, in early 2020, the U.S., where they remain. Lilibet was born in the U.S. on June 4, 2021.

Tatler reports that Harry has visited Africa a number of times over the years, and, in the early days of the relationship between Harry and Meghan in 2016, the couple visited the continent together for the first time, just three weeks after their first date.

“I managed to persuade her to come and join me in Botswana, and we camped out with each other under the stars,” he later revealed, per the outlet.

He also spent time in Mozambique with his ex-girlfriend, Chelsy Davy, who is from Zimbabwe.

Harry and Meghan (with four-month-old Archie in tow) visited Africa in an official capacity in 2019, undertaking a royal tour that saw stops in South Africa, Malawi, Angola, and Botswana. Harry also cofounded the charity Sentebale with Prince Seeiso of Lesotho in 2006, established to help children in Africa affected by poverty, inequality, HIV/AIDS, and, more recently, COVID-19.

While fate ultimately took them to California, according to Tatler, “in 2019, reports suggested that Palace aides had drawn up plans to give the Duke and Duchess of Sussex a major international job that could have seen them moving abroad.” Africa was always rumored to be on the shortlist of places the couple wanted to go. 

Rachel Burchfield
Contributing Royal Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family. In addition to serving as the royal editor at Marie Claire, she has worked with publications like Vogue, Vanity Fair, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, and more. She cohosts Podcast Royal, a show that provides candid commentary on the biggest royal family headlines and offers segments on fashion, beauty, health and wellness, and lifestyle.