Britain's Royalty Trail
Palace of Holyroodhouse
As Prince William and Kate Middleton prepare to wed, the eyes of the world again focus on the British monarchy and its pomp and splendor. Enjoy a whirlwind tour of sites near and dear to the royal couple and the royal family — not to mention a few tasty bits of gossip.

The Palace of Holyroodhouse, or Holyrood Palace, is the official residence of the monarch in Scotland. The palace stands at the bottom of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, at the opposite end to Edinburgh Castle. Holyrood Palace is the setting for state ceremonies and official entertaining. The Queen typically stays here during Holyrood week, which usually runs from the end of June to the beginning of July.

Buckingham Palace
Put simply, Buckingham Palace is Queen Elizabeth’s 775-room home in London. It has been the residence of British sovereigns since 1837. Visitors flock here to see the daily Changing of the Guard from May to July. The Queen uses the palace to entertain visiting heads of state, bestow knighthoods on distinguished Brits, and to meet that most basic need of monarchs everywhere, to catch some Z’s. When the Queen makes her annual visit to Scotland in summer, the palace's 19 staterooms are open to visitors. Then it’s time to see some royally cool stuff, indeed: paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens, Poussin and Canaletto; sculpture by Canova; Sèvres porcelain; and fine English and French furniture.

Windsor Castle
Think of Windsor Castle as Queen Elizabeth’s weekend home and office. A fire here in 1992 caused severe damage, which led to controversy over who would foot the bill for repairs. Now fully restored, Windsor Castle is a great place to catch the Changing of the Guard when the Queen is in residence. Many parts of the castle are open to the public, including the State Apartments, Queen Mary's famous dolls' house, St. George's Chapel and the Albert Memorial Chapel.

Anglesey, Wales
Prince William is a search-and-rescue pilot at RAF Valley, a Royal Air Force station on the island of Anglesey, Wales. William and Kate, quite the modern couple, have been living in a farmhouse on Anglesey for several months and will continue to do so after the wedding. It’s a quiet sort of place far from the hustle and bustle of London. Want to see their neighbors?
Clarence House
Clarence House is the official residence of Princes William and Harry, their dad Prince Charles, and his wife Camilla Parker Bowles. It was also the former London residence of the late Queen Mother. Clarence House is open to the public in summer. Visitors are given a guided tour of the five rooms and adjoining spaces on the ground floor.

Harrods, London
When Princess Diana and her boyfriend, Dodi Fayed, perished in a 1997 car crash in Paris, Dodi’s father, Mohamed Al-Fayed, owned Harrods department store in London. Harrods is now home to two memorials to Diana and Dodi; the first is a set of photos of the two, a wine glass smudged with lipstick from Diana’s last dinner, and an engagement ring Dodi purchased the day before they died. The second memorial is a bronze statue called “Innocent Victims.” It shows the two dancing on a beach beneath the wings of an albatross.

The Prince of Wales took up residence in Wales in 2008 when he and Camilla moved into a three-bedroom farmhouse at Llwynywermod, a 192-acre estate near the village of Myddfai in Brecon Beacons National Park in Wales. If you’re fond of both royalty and hiking, your fairytale dream can come true here. When Charles and Camilla are not in residence, visitors can rent the North Range cottage or the West Range cottage near the couple’s farmhouse dwelling. As for hiking, Brecon Beacons National Park cannot be beat. Check out the panoramic views.

Kensington Palace
Kensington Palace was Princess Diana’s home and the place where she raised her sons, Princes William and Harry. When Diana died in a car crash in Paris on Aug. 31, 1997, the public streamed to Kensington Palace to lay flowers in her memory. Photos and news reports at the time showed an ocean of bouquets stretching all the way to Kensington Gardens. Kensington Palace is open daily for visitors. For a special treat, take afternoon tea at the 18th century Orangery Restaurant on the grounds.

University of St. Andrews in Fife, Scotland
Wills and Kate met at Scotland’s first university in 2001. Prince William was studying geography; Kate, art history. Like other British universities, the University of St. Andrews offers budget accommodations in summer. Visitors can rent rooms in New Hall, McIntosh Hall and David Russell Apartments. Like golf? This town is where golf began, and now has 11 courses.
St. Paul's Cathedral
The eyes of the world were upon St. Paul’s Cathedral in 1981 when Prince Charles married Lady Diana Spencer. The wedding ceremony drew a global TV and radio audience. The cathedral now offers a variety of experiences for visitors: Take afternoon tea in the restaurant, or climb the dome to the Whispering Gallery to try out its unique acoustics. A whisper on one side can be heard clearly 100 feet away. Climb 271 more steps to the top of the dome for panoramic views across London.

Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey has hosted 15 royal weddings dating back to 1100, when King Henry I married Princess Matilda of Scotland. The Queen (as Princess Elizabeth) and The Duke of Edinburgh wed here in 1947. William and Kate will be married here at 11 a.m. April 29. Many famous people are buried here, as well, including Charles Darwin, Isaac Newton, Geoffrey Chaucer, Charles Dickens and George Frideric Handel. When Princess Diana's funeral took place here in 1997, Elton John sang in tribute. Read the lyrics to “Candle in the Wind” that were recast for Diana.

Sandringham Estate
If you saw the Oscar-winning film “The King’s Speech,” you may have caught a glimpse of the sprawling Sandringham Estate near the village of Sandringham in Norfolk, England. In the movie, Queen Elizabeth’s father, King George VI (played by Colin Firth), struggles to deliver a Christmas Day speech here. The royal family continues to spend each New Year’s at Sandringham. More royal trivia: Prince Charles and Lady Diana were neighbors here until 1975. Their families had known each other for many years.

Balmoral Castle
Balmoral Castle, a large estate house in Royal Deeside, Scotland, has been one of the residences of the British royal family since 1852, when it was purchased by Queen Victoria and her consort, Prince Albert. It remains the private property of the monarch and is not part of the state-owned Crown Estate. The Queen was staying at Balmoral at the time of the death of Princess Diana in 1997, and was criticized for not returning to London to mourn publicly. The Balmoral estate grounds, gardens and the castle ballroom are open to visitors from April to July.

The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Walk
This 7-mile long circular walking trail in London is dedicated to the memory of Princess Diana. The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Walk goes between Kensington Gardens, Green Park, Hyde Park and St. James's Park in a figure-eight pattern, passing five sites that are associated with her life: Kensington Palace, Spencer House, Buckingham Palace, St. James's Palace and Clarence House.