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Thousands gather as Prince Harry arrives in Sydney

Royal fever hit Australia on Saturday as Prince Harry received a warm welcome as he arrived in Sydney for his first official visit to the country.

The Prince was greeted by thousands of well-wishers who hoped to catch a glimpse of the cheerful royal.

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Prince Harry, representing The Queen, has made a brief visit to Australia. (Photo: BBC)

The 29-year-old’s brief visit to Australia was to mark the Navy’s International Fleet Review, and the Prince was invited as guest of honour.

Huge crowds gathered as Harry took part in a brief meet and greet with members of the public. One boy gave Harry a toy koala, perhaps a gift for his nine-week-old nephew Prince George. After thanking the boy and his parents, the Prince posed for a photograph with the family.

The Prince who was dressed in his white army uniform, then boarded the HMAS Leeuwin, at Sydney’s Garden Island naval base where he inspected the flotilla and was joined by Australia’s Governor-General Quentin Bryce.

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Harry met with well-wishers who had come out to see the Prince. (Photo: BBC)

Ships from around the world, including US, Britain, India and Thailand, have arrived in Sydney to mark the centenary celebrations.

The event is Harry’s only scheduled public appearance for the royal and after the brief visit he will travel to Dubai for a Senteble charity dinner.

After reviewing the flotilla, Harry posed with Prime Minister Tony Abbott and his family.

The Prince seemed a hit with Tony’s wife Margie and their two daughters, Frances, 22 and Bridge, 20, and the group laughed and smiled as they took part in the photocall.

“They’re both very excited to see you,” the Prime Minister told Prince Harry as he introduced him to his two daughters.

The celebrations in Sydney have been held to mark Australia’s naval centenary and millions were expected to take part in the day which concluded with a spectacular firework display.

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The celebrations concluded with a dazzling firework display over the harbour. (Photo: BBC)