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Harry and Meghan's royal tour of Fiji: all the best pictures from day one

harry meghan hotel fiji
Fiona Ward
Acting Fashion and Beauty Editor
Updated: 23 October 2018
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plane fiji© Photo: Getty Images

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex arrived in Fiji on Tuesday - beginning their three-day visit to the South Pacific island during their first overseas tour. Arriving at Suva’s Nausori airport, Harry and Meghan were first greeted by Melanie Hopkins, the High Commissioner and chief of protocol, Jonetani Tagivetaua. After disembarking from their Qantas charter flight in light rain and strong winds - forcing the Duchess to hold on to her hat - the couple were introduced to the Hon Frank Bainamara, Fiji’s Prime Minister and his wife, Maria, Ro Teimumu Kepa, leader of the opposition, Alessandro Truppia, the High Commissioner’s wife and Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto, commander of the RFMF.

For the important occasion, both Harry and Meghan dressed formally – the pair observed a royal salute, as the national anthem was played and the red carpets on the tarmac blew off in the strong wind. Scroll through the gallery to see all the best pictures from their first day on the island…

meghan flowers© Photo: Getty Images

Meghan was presented with a bouquet of flowers by a flower girl from the chiefly island of Bau, the island home of Ratu Apensia Cakobau, who ceded Fiji to Britain in 1874. The Queen previously visited Bau in 1982.

meghan fiji© Photo: Getty Images

Meghan wore a custom Zimmermann dress to mark the occasion, complete with a striking Stephen Jones hat in matching ivory. She teamed the look with black accessories in her favourite Kayu box clutch and Tabitha Simmons heels.

And, in a sentimental nod to her new family back in the UK, she wore a pair of pearl and diamond earrings gifted to her by the Queen – she first debuted them on her visit to Chester with Her Majesty – and a pretty bracelet that was given to her by father-in-law Prince Charles.

prince harry fiji© Photo: Getty Images

Prince Harry stands on a dais on the runway to observe a royal salute - with Meghan positioned a few metres behind him with the welcome party. 

meghan wind© Photo: Getty Images

The royal couple certainly had to battle the weather on their arrival, but the strong winds and drizzle didn't dampen Meghan's smile! The red carpet even threatened to blow away as the group observed the royal salute. 

harry guard of honour© Photo: Getty Images

The Duke was then invited to inspect the guard of honour made up of the 3rd Battalion Fiji Infantry Regiment and the Fiji Navy.

meghan welcome ceremony© Photo: PA

Meghan arrives for an official welcome ceremony at Albert Park in Suva.

welcome ceremony© Photo: Rex

The royal couple were adorably gifted with fans emblazoned with 'HRH' during the ceremony - how sweet! The event, known as the Veirqaraqaravi Vakavanua, embodying Fijian cultural identity and heritage, echoes one attended by the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh during their Commonwealth tour in 1953.

harry water© Photo: Rex

Harry is given kava, a drink made from a mashed plant root in the yaqona vakaturaga. He accepted the bowl and held it to his lips as the crowd cheered. 

ceremony© Photo: Rex

The pair looked happy and relaxed as they sat watching the ceremony on the stage.

meghan harry balcony© Photo: Rex

The couple wave from the balcony of the Grand Pacific Hotel, in Suva, Fiji, where they will be staying during the trip. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh also stayed in here 1953.

balcony© Photo: Rex

They then retreated to their room to prepare for the evening's state reception at the hotel, hosted by the President.

meghan harry fiji baby bump© Photo: PA

An hour later, the Duchess reemerged, with her growing baby bump on full display. Meghan, who was wearing her first ever royal gown, looked incredible in her blue frock by designer SAFiYAA, which featured a gorgeous cape silhouette. The beautiful shade is in fact thought to be a nod to the nation, with one guest noting the gown was clearly 'Fijian Blue' - a tribute to her hosts.

meghan harry fiji dinner gown© Photo: PA

Meghan wore her dark hair long and loose and accessorised with beautiful diamond drop-earrings.

meghan harry fiji guests dinner© Photo: PA

She looked ultra-elegant in her floaty dress, while Harry made a dapper Prince in his tuxedo.

meghan markle baby bump fiji dinner© Photo: PA

The mum-to-be sweetly cradled her growing bump during the state dinner. 

prince harry speech diana tribute© Photo: Getty Images

Harry gave a speech on the night, saying: "All over the world Fiji is renowned for its incredible natural beauty and hospitality. We, as a couple, feel very lucky to be spending part of our tour as your guests."

The President of Fiji also said some words and paid tribute to Prince Harry's mother, Princess Diana. He said he was sure she would be "proud of the man" Harry had become and that he had found happiness and love with Meghan.

meghan markle drinks water© Photo: Getty Images

The pregnant royal toasted their trip with a glass of water before settling down for dinner.

meghan markle harry bump reception fiji posing© Photo: Facebook

The Duke and Duchess, and Meghan's baby bump (!), posed for an official portrait at the hotel with the President, the First Lady Sarote Konrote and Speaker of the Parliament Jiko Luveni.

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