Prince Harry says he’s ensuring the queen is ‘protected,’ has ‘right people around her’

In a TODAY exclusive, the prince tells Hoda Kotb he's also happy living in California "for the time being."


Prince Harry might be ready to mend old wounds.

While taking part in the fifth Invictus Games — a sporting event for injured and sick veterans — the Duke of Sussex, 37, sat down with TODAY's Hoda Kotb and opened up about his recent visit with his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II.

“Being with her, it was great,” Harry remarked during the interview, which took place in The Hague in the Netherlands. “It was just so nice to see her … She’s on great form.”

Prince Harry (far right) opened up to Hoda Kotb (center) about his role in the Invictus Games, his relationship with his grandmother, and his wife, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex (not pictured).Ines Vansteenkiste-Muylle for TODAY

Harry being open about his visit comes amid speculation about the British monarch's health since testing positive for COVID-19 in February. Since then, the queen has largely avoided the public eye. Her absence from this past weekend’s Easter celebrations sparked concern that she might be continuing to struggle with her health

According to the prince, he was able to share some laughs with the queen over tea and alongside his wife, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. “She’s always got a great sense of humor with me,” he explained.

Hoda Kotb sat down with Prince Harry and spoke about the Invictus Games and his grandmother.Ines Vansteenkiste-Muylle for TODAY

“I know you make her laugh. That’s what she always says,” Hoda noted to Harry during their conversation. “Did you do it, (make her laugh) again?”

“Yeah, I did,” Harry replied with a chuckle. “It was really nice to catch up with her.”

Harry also said that despite living further away from her these days, he's putting in the effort to ensure his grandmother remains secure and supported. In 2020, Harry and the former Meghan Markle moved thousands of miles away from the queen’s English residence. The couple relocated to Santa Barbara, California, where they currently live with their two children; Archie, 2, and Lilibet, 10 months. 

“I’m just making sure that she’s, you know, protected and got the right people around her,” he explained to Hoda. “You know, home — home for me, now, is, you know, for the time being, in the states.” 

While the couple announced in 2020 that they would step back from their royal duties, Harry's brother, Prince William, continues to carry out official duties in support of the queen. During a tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey in 2021, Harry admitted a rift had developed in his relationship with his brother, saying, “Time heals all things, hopefully.”

During his interview with Hoda, Harry reflected on making a life with his family in Santa Barbara, CA saying that they'd "been welcomed with open arms, Ines Vansteenkiste-Muylle for TODAY

At this time, it seems he’s happy with his new home across the pond.

“We’ve been welcomed with open arms,” he told Hoda before noting that, for now, he and his family have “got such a great community up in Santa Barbara.”

Catch more of Hoda’s interview with Prince Harry Wednesday morning on TODAY.