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The Prince of Wales's Tour of India in 1875-6

Albert Edward's tour aimed to strengthen ties between the two countries

Detail from a map of India and the Middle East, showing the route of the Prince of Wales' tour
His Royal Highness and Elephant: Prince of Wales Tour of India 1875-6 (vol.6)©

In October 1875, Albert Edward Prince of Wales, the eldest son of Queen Victoria, embarked on an extensive tour of the Indian subcontinent. Here the Prince visited more than 21 towns and cities before returning to England in May 1876. British monarchs and members of the Royal Family undertook lengthy tours to strengthen ties with other countries, and also to learn more about the culture and history of those regions. The Prince of Wales’s tour of India was envisaged as a way of forging diplomatic links between the Indian rulers and the British Crown. The Prince exchanged gifts with each ruler he met and some of the most significant Indian works of art in the Royal Collection today were acquired during this tour.

This trail explores the Prince of Wales's journey around the Indian subcontinent, which encompassed parts of modern-day India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Nepal.

The Prince of Wales' Tour : a diary in India, with some account of the visits of H.R.H. to the courts of Greece, Egypt, Spain & Portugal / by William Howard Russell ; with illustrations by Sydney P. Hall©
Photograph of the Prince of Wales with staff and suite, outside Goverment House, including Captain A. Fitz-George, Captain Durrant, Lord Aylesford, Francis Knollys, Sir Dighton Probyn, Lord Alfred Paget, Sir Joseph Frayer, Cannon Duckworth, the Earl of Gr
En route to India

The Prince of Wales travelled to India aboard HMS Serapis

1 medal : silver
Obverse: Prince of Wales' plumes within Garter and the chain of the order of the Star of India, dividing A - E
Reverse: H. R. H. / ALBERT EDWARD / PRINCE / OF WALES / INDIA / 1875-6
First steps in India

After nearly a month at sea, the Prince arrived in India

A watercolour depicting Spry (a sailor on board HMS Serapis, on which Albert Edward, Prince of Wales, travelled to India) dressed as Father Christmas on Christmas day 1875. Inscribed and dated: Spry as Father Christmas. Xmas Day. Serapis / 1875.In October
Along the coasts of India and Sri Lanka

The second leg of the voyage was mainly by ship

A pencil and wash drawing depicting Albert Edward, the Prince of Wales, opening a new railway bridge for the Punjab Northern State Railways in Wazirabad (now in modern-day Pakistan), which crosses over the River Chenab, on 22 January 1876. 
Travelling inland

The Prince continued his voyage inland by rail

A pencil and wash drawing depicting the arrival of Albert Edward, the Prince of Wales, at Jaipur on 4 February 1876.  The Prince is seated on the back of an elephant with Maharaja Ram Singh II. Inscribed, dated and signed: Arrival of H
Visit to the Indian Courts

The final months of the tour saw the Prince travel further inland

A watercolour depicting a view of HMS Serapis entering the Solent  on 11 May 1876 on its return from the Prince of Wales's Indian tour. Signed and dated: WE Atkins 76.In October 1875, Albert Edward, the eldest son of Queen Victoria, embarked on
Farewell to India

The Prince departed India on the 13 March 1876

The income from your ticket contributes directly to The Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity. The aims of The Royal Collection Trust are the care and conservation of the Royal Collection, and the promotion of access and enjoyment through exhibitions, publications, loans and educational activities.