Queen Elizabeth has begun her Christmas celebrations at her Sandringham estate.

Queen Elizabeth

Queen Elizabeth

The 91-year-old royal arrived in Norfolk alongside her husband Prince Philip on Thursday (21.12.17), after the pair travelled up from London via train, which took them to the nearby Kings Lynn station.

As they left the train - which they are believed to have travelled first class on - 96-year-old Prince Philip was spotted carrying a bit of light reading in the form of a book entitled 'Michaelangelo: The Complete Works' by Frank Zollner, Christof Thoenes and Thomas Pöpper.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip then made the short journey from the station to their private Sandringham estate, where they will spend Christmas and New Year.

Traditionally, the royal family - including the likes of Prince Charles, Prince William, and Prince Harry - join the monarch and her consort for part of the festive period and attend the Christmas Day (25.12.17) service at a church on the grounds of the estate.

After attending the service, the royals will head back to Sandringham House for a lavish Christmas lunch before watching the Queen give her famous speech to the nation in the afternoon.

But there will be no exchanging of gifts that day as the family swap presents on Christmas Eve (24.12.17) - keeping in with German tradition.

The Queen's trip to Sandringham comes after she hosted her annual Christmas lunch at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday (20.12.17).

The party marked the first time Prince Harry's fiancée Meghan Markle had met some of the wider royal family, including Prince Michael of Kent, the queen's cousin, his wife Princess Michael and their daughter Lady Gabriella Windsor, and Princess Eugenie.

Prince William, his wife Duchess Catherine and their children - four-year-old Prince George and two-year-old Princess Charlotte - were also in attendance at the event.