The former Kate Middleton laughed and began to move on before the woman trained her cellphone camera on the royal and added, “Ireland belongs to the Irish.”
It wasn’t clear if Princess Kate heard all of the woman’s comments outside Carrickfergus Castle, an 800-year-old historical landmark.
Northern Ireland became part of the United Kingdom in 1921, and violence has erupted there often between U.K. loyalists and those who want to form a united Ireland.
The Irish Examiner noted that the royal walkabout took place in an area where Irish nationalism largely holds sway.
It can be a combustible topic, but the princess appeared to get through the encounter with a smile.
She and Prince William were making a one-day trip to Northern Ireland about a month after Queen Elizabeth II died, leaving the throne to the now-King Charles III. William is next in the line of succession.