This year, 96-year-old Elizabeth II was in particular need of a holiday. She celebrated her 70th anniversary on the throne and attended a host of celebrations despite her health problems. This afternoon Elizabeth, dressed in a purple and yellow floral dress, left her residence in Berkshire for scenic Scotland. Her Majesty is likely to spend a few weeks there and will no doubt be joined by other members of the royal family.
Traditionally, the queen stays at Craigowan Lodge, a stone cottage about a mile from the main Balmoral Castle, until it closes for tours. Elizabeth normally rests in Scotland until September/October, after which she returns to her royal duties with renewed vigour.
The Queen is known to adore Scotland. In 1947 she and her late husband Prince Philip even spent part of their honeymoon at Birkhall, a hunting lodge on the estate. In the ITV documentary Our Queen at Ninety, Princess Eugenie shared that her grandmother felt truly happy in Balmoral.
It was reported at the beginning of July that Elizabeth II had handed over some of her powers to her eldest son, Prince Charles – the main contender for the throne. Now the Duke of Wales will replace Elizabeth II more often at public events and on visits to the countries of the United Kingdom, which she can no longer visit due to her failing health. This is a big deal for British society.