Queen Elizabeth 'Understands Why' Meghan Markle Can't Travel at the Moment, Says Source

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Erin Hill
·3 min read
Queen Elizabeth 'Understands Why' Meghan Markle Can't Travel at the Moment, Says Source
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While Prince Harry flew back to the U.K. on Sunday to quarantine ahead of his grandfather Prince Philip's funeral next weekend, his wife Meghan Markle stayed behind.

The Duchess of Sussex, who is expecting her couple's second child — a girl — "has been advised by her physician not to travel," a palace spokesperson said, and remains in California with their son Archie, who turns 2 in May.

"It was always a given that Harry would return to England for his grandfather's passing," a California source tells PEOPLE, adding that after Philip's death both Meghan and Harry "were in contact with the Queen."

"Meghan expressed condolences. The Queen understands why she can't travel at the moment," the source adds.

RELATED: The Real Story Behind the Viral Photo of Queen Elizabeth Giggling Next to Prince Philip in Uniform

Harry is currently isolating at his and Meghan's Windsor home, Frogmore Cottage, ahead of Saturday's funeral service at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle.

Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Meghan Markle and Queen Elizabeth

Chris Jackson/Getty Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at Commonwealth Day 2020

Harry and Prince William both shared loving tributes to their grandfather on Monday amid a period of high tension between the brothers, who have been divided by an ocean since Harry and Meghan left the U.K. more than a year ago.

The rift grew even wider following the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's revealing interview with Oprah Winfrey in March. Harry is set to reunite with his brother — and the rest of the royal family — for the first time next weekend when they gather to pay tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh.

Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Prince Harry and Prince Philip in 2015

One day after arriving in the U.K., Harry shared a personal statement in the wake of his grandfather's death, sharing, "My grandfather was a man of service, honour and great humour. He was authentically himself, with a seriously sharp wit, and could hold the attention of any room due to his charm—and also because you never knew what he might say next.

"He will be remembered as the longest reigning consort to the Monarch, a decorated serviceman, a Prince and a Duke. But to me, like many of you who have lost a loved one or grandparent over the pain of this past year, he was my grandpa: master of the barbecue, legend of banter, and cheeky right 'til the end.

"He has been a rock for Her Majesty The Queen with unparalleled devotion, by her side for 73 years of marriage, and while I could go on, I know that right now he would say to all of us, beer in hand, 'Oh do get on with it!'

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"So, on that note, Grandpa, thank you for your service, your dedication to Granny, and for always being yourself. You will be sorely missed, but always remembered—by the nation and the world. Meghan, Archie, and I (as well as your future great-granddaughter) will always hold a special place for you in our hearts."