Over nine years after announcing his engagement to Kate Middleton, Prince William has opened up about proposing to his then-girlfriend. The Duke of Cambridge shared a romantic detail about the 2010 proposal while hosting a reception at Buckingham Palace to mark the UK-Africa Investment Summit. “The African continent holds a very special place in my heart. It is the place my father took my brother and me shortly after our mother died. And when deciding where best to propose to Catherine, I could think of no more fitting place than Kenya to get down on one knee,” he revealed.
In their post-engagement interview with Tom Bradby, the Cambridges were coy about the proposal, which took place during their holiday in Kenya. “We had a little private time away together with some friends and I just decided that it was the right time really,” William said. “We had been talking about marriage for a while so it wasn't a massively big surprise. I took her up somewhere nice in Kenya and I proposed.” Kate added, “It was very romantic. There's a true romantic in there.”
At the time, William revealed to interviewer Tom that he had been planning the proposal for a while, and had been carrying the engagement ring—his mother Princess Diana’s sapphire and diamond ring—in his “rucksack for about three weeks” before popping the question. “I'd been planning it for a while but as every guy out there will know it takes a certain amount of motivation to get yourself going. So I was planning it and then it just felt really right out in Africa. It was beautiful at the time. I just … I had done a little bit of planning to show my romantic side,” he confessed. “You hear a lot of horror stories about proposing and things going horribly wrong—it went really, really well and I was really pleased she said yes.”
Fast-forward to 2020 and the Duke and Duchess are happily married with three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis. On Monday, William admitted that he wants his kids to share his love for the continent where he proposed to their mother. He said, “As Catherine and I have said to several of you here tonight, we hope to have the chance to visit many more countries in the future and share our mutual love of your continent with our children."