News National Prince Harry and Meghan Markle touch down in Australia

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle touch down in Australia

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have touched down in Sydney ahead of their 16-day tour of Australia. Photo: ABC News
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Prince Harry and his new bride Meghan have arrived in Sydney a day before kicking off their first overseas tour as a royal couple.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex touched down just after 7am on a overcast Sydney morning on Monday .

It had been thought they had arrived at 6am on a British Airways flight, but they flew in on a Qantas flight from Singapore that arrived an hour later.

Holding hands and casually dressed, the couple walked out a back entrance and got into a car.

Meghan was smiling and clutching folders, while Harry gave a thumbs up to bystanders.

A police motorcade whisked them away just after 7.40am to Admiralty House where they will recover from the flight and prepare for their first full day of engagements on Tuesday.

Tuesday will be the first time for the public to interact with the couple, who were married in May.

They will be officially welcomed by Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove before visiting Taronga Zoo and the Sydney Opera House.

They have 76 engagements across 16 days in Australia, Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand, which will include Sydney, Dubbo, Melbourne and Queensland’s Fraser Island.

The tour coincides with the Invictus Games in Sydney, which runs from October 20-28.

The sporting event founded by Prince Harry in 2014 gives sick and injured service personnel and veterans the opportunity to compete in sports such as wheelchair basketball and sitting volleyball.

The couple will mark the games’ launch and closing ceremony in Sydney.

Harry and Meghan’s tour of Australia is seen as a key one for the royal couple who, during a TV interview to mark their engagement last November, spoke of their desire to promote humanitarian causes close to their hearts across Commonwealth member countries including Australia.

The visit comes six months after Prince Charles made his 16th official visit to Australia, primarily to open the 21st Commonwealth Games on Queensland’s Gold Coast.