Traditionally the Queen inspects troops when she takes up residence at the castle and, outside the gates, the head of state cast her eye over soldiers from Balaklava Company, 5th Battalion the Royal Regiment of Scotland.
The Pipes and Drums of the regiment’s 3rd Battalion performed during the ceremony and the Royal Regiment of Scotland’s mascot, Shetland Pony Lance Corporal Cruachan IV, also took part.
The pony has met the monarch before – and in 2017 during a visit to Stirling Castle, he even tried to eat her bouquet of flowers.
The monarch’s annual stay at Balmoral is the first time she has holidayed on her private estate since the death of her husband the Duke of Edinburgh.
Scotland has been a welcome place of sanctuary for the royal family since Queen Victoria’s day as they relax and enjoy country pursuits in the stunning setting of the Highlands.
The Queen, who wore a bright pink hat and coat, is unlikely to be alone for very long as members of her family are invited to spend time with her at Balmoral every summer.
Love the royals? Sign up for the Mirror’s daily newsletter to get all the latest news on the Queen, Charles, Kate, Wills, Meghan, Harry and the rest of The Firm. Click here to sign up.
A picture released following Philip’s death in April showed the Queen and her late husband surrounded by their great-grandchildren at their Scottish home.
The Queen left for Scotland just over two weeks ago and is believed to have been staying at Craigowan Lodge on the Balmoral estate where she normally spends the initial period of her summer holiday.
The welcome ceremony was not performed last year due to the pandemic and the Queen took part in her role as Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal Regiment of Scotland.
Despite being on holiday, work still continues for the head of state as every day she receives from Government ministers, and from her representatives in the Commonwealth and foreign countries, information in the form of policy papers, Cabinet documents and other State papers for her attention.
These are sent up to her by private secretaries in the red boxes also used by Government ministers to carry confidential documents.
In fact, one of the guests the Queen usually invites each summer is the Prime Minister.
And it has been reported that the Queen will extend an invitation to Balmoral to Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie – if Covid rules allow.
Her Majesty is said to be keen to get the Prime Minister and his partner to her cherished Highland retreat, reports the Daily Express.
The Johnsons, and possibly a Commonwealth premier or governor general will likely be invited for a picnic with the monarch during their stay.