Of course, the high point of the year for the royals was the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. And while there were lots of moments that entranced millions around the world, perhaps it was the kiss on the balcony at Buckingham Palace that best encapsulated the magnificent wedding, the immensely popular young couple and the rejuvenation of the monarchy itself. “Never in the history of Britain, have so many waited for a kiss between so few,” tweeted one observer. April, 29. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
The royal wedding also introduced the world to Pippa Middleton, who carried the train of her sister’s dress. Some even felt that interest in Pippa at times threatened to overshadow the attention given to Kate. Much of the world’s interest, as well as a whole subgenre of jokes and puns, focused on her rear, though her front isn’t exactly unappealing, either. April 29. (Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP Images)
On a visit to a cancer charity center in Belfast, Kate flips a pancake. The Queen also made an historic visit to Northern Ireland this year, although as far as anyone knows, she didn’t flip any pancakes. March 8. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)
If you look hard, you can see Queen Elizabeth in the center, in front of the green tent. (She’s the one with the hat.) She’s attending the Great Aussie Barbecue in Perth, the last event on her 11-day state visit to Australia. A day earlier, a meeting of Commonwealth nations approved the most sweeping changes in royal succession laws in centuries, paving the way for a first-born daughter of William and Kate to become Queen. Oct. 29. (Mogens Johansen/AP Images)
Prince William was hailed as a hero when his RAF search and rescue team was sent to the Irish Sea in the dark early morning hours of Nov. 27. In the midst of high winds and stormy weather, the team rescued two Russian sailors whose boat had been destroyed. The photo is a freeze frame of video taken from on board one of the helicopters.
Kate and William hobnob with Hollywood celebrities, in this case Jennifer Lopez, during their trip to the West Coast this summer. July 9 (Rex Features/AP Images)
As the Duke of Edinburgh celebrated his 90th birthday, he told the BBC in an interview that he was going to reduce some of his official responsibilities. Still, a few months later he was accompanying the Queen on a densely scheduled state visit to Australia. As the family was gathering last week to celebrate Christmas, the Prince was rushed to the hospital after feeling chest pains. He was fitted with a coronary stent and appears to be recovering well.
Prince Harry arrived in the U.S. at the beginning of October for two months of Apache helicopter training. In addition to his military work, he seems to have enjoyed the Southwest and, of course, spent a few days in Vegas with his comrades-in-arms. Oct. 6 (Sarah Candito – Rex Features/AP Images)
Kate and William kick off a city parade while they attend the annual Calgary Stampede during their summer trip to Canada. July 8. (Rex Features via AP Images)
Prince Charles and Camilla pose with volunteers from the Youth United network at a community center in Croyden, Surrey, which was hit by rioting this summer. During his visits, the Prince of Wales spoke about the need to combat the “root cause” of social unrest. This year, he became the longest-serving heir apparent to the British throne – he’s been next-in-line for 59 years. Aug. 17. (Steve Parsons/AP Images)
A much less public kiss than the one on the Palace balcony, an intimate smooch is nevertheless captured by photographers during the couple’s royal visit to the California. Will had just played a polo match in Santa Barbara. July 9. (Rex Features/AP Images)