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Just another day in paradise; Meghan strokes her baby bump after relaxing day at luxury spa.

Byline: RUSSELL MYERS on Fraser Island, Australia Pictures: IAN VOGLER inhand

PREGNANT Meghan Markle tenderly places a palm on her stomach as she strolls hand-inhand with husband Prince Harry in the glorious sunshine of a paradise island.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex enjoyed their "babymoon" together on Fraser Island after the mum-tobe spent a relaxing time being pampered at a spa hotel for the day.

And last night Harry and Meghan, a week into their first major international tour, stayed over at the idyllic destination, off Australia's eastern Queensland coast.

The stunning setting encompasses the world's largest sand island, stretching 75 miles, and including incredible viewpoints and ribbons of coloured sand.

The Unesco ecotourism venue has picturesque beaches and swimming sites at Lake McKenzie, Lake Wabby and other freshwater pools for the royals to enjoy. Having felt tired after the start of the hectic tour schedule and jet lagged from the journey Down Under, Meghan elected to sit out some engagements on Sunday and yesterday.

After leaving Sydney, where they launched the Invictus Games, the royal couple arrived at Fraser Island via Hervey Bay in Queensland.

Meghan spent yesterday at its exclusive Kingfisher Bay Resort, which offers an in-house spa with pregnancy-approved treatments.

A palace source said: "The last few days of travelling to Australia and then getting fully involved with all the engagements had left the Duchess feeling very tired.

"The first trimester for pregnant women is often one of the hardest and it was decided by her and the Duke she needed some well-earned rest. The tour to the rainforest was also incredibly bumpy, so it wouldn't have been suitable.

"She's not sick, nor is she exhausted - and she's really looking forward to the rest of the tour.

"The couple were able to have the night to themselves and, no doubt, think about the last week and the next step of their tour, to Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand, which they are both incredibly excited about."

The source added: "This was the perfect time for them to relax together after they announced their fantastic news and some may say it's the perfect babymoon destination away from it all." The resort where Meghan spent the day also offers a Bush Tucker and Bush Medicine tour. The Duchess had earlier made her way to the world heritage-listed island, separating from Prince Harry at Hervey Bay Airport and boarding a high-speed vessel and a popular whale watching boat, Tasman Venture.

K'gari, the traditional name of Fraser Island, means "paradise" in the local dialect and is a top pick for an expectant mum looking to relax.

Meanwhile, Prince Harry took the yellow Fraser Island Explorer Tour Bus to River Heads, where he boarded the public barge for a 45-minute calm crossing to the pristine and unique Fraser Island and his ultimate goal, Pile Valley, and a rainforest which exists on the sand.

It is the only rainforest in the world that grows out of the sand, with towering 50m tall satinay trees.

Harry was welcomed to Pile Valley with a traditional smoking ceremony to ward off evil spirits by members of the Butchulla People, the traditional owners of the land.

The Duke was there to mark the forest's dedication to the Queen's Commonwealth Canopy Initiative, a growing area of protected forests across the organisation's 53 member states.

K'gari has 200,000 acres for now under protection. Prince Harry's second stop was the iconic Lake McKenzie, where a Butchulla elder performed a "welcome-to-country" ceremony dipping foliage into the crystal-clear water and washing the Prince's bare feet.

The dad-to-be, said: "It is up to us now to protect this paradise together - not just because it looks beautiful - but because it is an essential part of our existence and will continue to be for our children and their children's children."

Harry also joked that the plaque he was to unveil, marking the dedication, had already been unveiled by his father in Bundaberg during his tour of Australia in April.

He said: "Luckily we are both skilled at unveiling plaques - it runs in the family."

russell.myers@mirror.co.uk

It is up to us now to protect this paradise together for our children PRINCE HARRY on queen's canopy forest

CAPTION(S):

mum to be Meghan strokes her tummy as she walks with Harry on Fraser Island

Spa bathroom at Kingfisher Bay STYLISH

Guests are pampered here RELAXING

WELCOME Harry with Joe Gala at lake
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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Oct 23, 2018
Words:740
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