Postcards from royal tours: Queen Elizabeth II’s world travel in pictures

·1-min read

“I can give my heart and my devotion to these old islands and to all the peoples of our brotherhood of nations,” pronounced Queen Elizabeth II on her first televised Christmas broadcast in 1957.

Following the sudden death of her father King George VI in 1952, the new monarch demonstrated her commitment to her role and duty as the Head of the State through her global travels, in which she embarked on a royal tour almost immediately after ascending to the throne in 1953.

It spanned over six months - the longest tour to date and, with Prince Phillip in tow, it crossed four continents, over 44,000 miles and encompassed the West Indies, Australia, New Zealand, Asia and Africa.

Until she stepped back from international travel in 2016 and ultimately her passing on September 8 2022, this remained a constant fixture throughout her reign in which she spent seven decades travelling around the globe on behalf of the Crown.

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh disembarking from the Royal Yacht Britannia in Portsmouth Dockyard (Ron Bell/PA) (PA Archive)
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh disembarking from the Royal Yacht Britannia in Portsmouth Dockyard (Ron Bell/PA) (PA Archive)

Whether that was visiting countries of the Commonwealth, meeting high-profile state leaders from around the world or exploring historic sites, Queen Elizabeth II played a key role in UK diplomacy at home and abroad.

In this time, she toured almost all 54 nations of the Commonwealth and met with 13 US presidents, four pontiffs and was even given the status of ‘honourary man’ in order to be able to meet with Saudi Arabia’s King Khalid II.

Click through the gallery above for some of the most iconic postcards from her overseas trips.