SECURITY concerns are believed to have been behind the postponement of Prince William and his new wife's honeymoon.
The newlyweds surprised many by revealing that they would not be immediately travelling overseas for the traditional post-wedding break.
The couple will instead spend time at an undisclosed location in the UK before Prince William goes back to work next week.
The sudden change came despite aides having said consistently that the honeymoon would immediately follow the wedding.
There was speculation it may have been prompted by security concerns.
The couple were originally believed to have booked a honeymoon in Jordan, where Kate -- now the Duchess of Cambridge -- lived for two years as a child.
But it is believed that possible security hazards surrounding the continuing unrest throughout the Middle East may have prompted a rethink.
The couple left Buckingham Palace on Saturday morning after an evening reception on Friday night that lasted until after 3am.
It featured music by the singer Ellie Goulding, who performed in the palace's throne room which had been transformed into a "massive nightclub" and ended with a spectacular fireworks display.
The couple walked hand in hand across a palace lawn on Saturday morning to a waiting helicopter, which flew them off for their secret weekend break.
It is thought the pair may have travelled to Balmoral, the queen's estate in Scotland, where Prince Charles and Princess Diana also spent part of their honeymoon.
Other possible locations for their domestic mini-break include the Scilly Isles, where Prince William holidayed with his parents and Prince Harry in in 1989, and a host of friends' private country estates.
Meanwhile with one royal wedding completed in such spectacular style, attention has already shifted to whether Prince Harry will soon follow his brother down the aisle.
The 26-year-old prince is back together with his long-term girlfriend Chelsy Davy (25), and is reported to have signalled his intentions at the royal wedding party by telling her: "You're next."