Prince George is 8! See the birthday photo taken by his mom, Kate Middleton


Britain’s Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have something to celebrate. On Thursday, their oldest child, Prince George, turns 8.

To usher in the happy occasion, on Wednesday evening, Kensington Palace released a new photo of the boy who will one day be king.

Smile, Prince George, it's your birthday!THE DUCHESS OF CAMBRIDGE / AFP - Getty Images

The photo was taken earlier this month in Norfolk, England, by George’s proud mom, the former Kate Middleton. It's something that's become a birthday tradition for all the Cambridge children over the years — and it’s clear she has a gift for capturing their joy.

George can be seen wearing a polo shirt and flashing a sweet smile in the shot. Royal experts on social media have noted that he appears to be sitting on a Land Rover Defender, in homage to his late great-grandfather Prince Philip's love for the vehicle.

This isn't the only glimpse royal watchers have been given of the tyke in recent weeks.

The young prince joined his parents in attending two big Euro 2020 soccer matches — and he really suited up for the games.

Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and his wife, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, were joined in the stands by their son Prince George as they celebrated a goal for England on June 29.dpa/picture alliance via Getty I

First George was spotted at the June 29 match between England and Germany at London’s Wembley Stadium, in which he wore a dark navy suit that coordinated perfectly with one worn by dad William, right down to their red, white and blue ties.

George didn't hide his love for the game.FRANK AUGSTEIN / POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Then, less than two weeks after England’s victory in that match, George and his suit were back at Wembley Stadium to see the highly anticipated final between England and Italy. And even though his home team lost in that final face-off, George gave the crowd a reason to smile with his own enthusiasm for the game.

George, who’s third in line for the British throne, behind his grandfather, Prince Charles, and his father, has long been a fan of the sport.

In fact, the birthday photos released when he turned 6 showed him wearing his England jersey.

Prince George is 8! See the birthday photo taken by his mom, Kate Middleton

Prince William and Kate Middleton’s 3 children through the years

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The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have three children. In addition to the birthday boy, there’s his sister, Princess Charlotte, 6, and their little brother, Prince Louis, 3.

Ree Hines

Ree Hines is a freelance writer and editor who covers pop culture, lifestyle stories and trending news. She’s also a soul-music loving, coffee-obsessed member of both Team Cat and Team Dog. Ree lives in Tampa, Florida, and is a regular contributor to TODAY.com.