It was the final day of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's action-packed three-week tour and yet the adored royals greeted, chatted and hugged fans who lined Queens Dr in Rotorua with a genuine warmth.

They grabbed every hand they could, took every gift that was offered to them, and took time to chat to locals who had waited since early this morning just for a chance to see their royal heroes.

As their car pulled up to the bottom of Queens Dr in the Government Gardens before their public walk through, the eager crowd erupted in cheers.

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex meet their fans at the public walkabout at the Rotorua Government Gardens. Photo / Pool
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex meet their fans at the public walkabout at the Rotorua Government Gardens. Photo / Pool

Their excitement grew as the royal couple got closer to their possies.

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Right at the start, Catalina Rivera, 2, from El Salvador, won the heart of Meghan. As the wee girl got through the barriers, she held on to Meghan's hands and did a little dance.

They then hugged, much to the delight of the cheering and screaming crowd.

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex meets Catalina Rivera. Photo / Pool
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex meets Catalina Rivera. Photo / Pool

Those spoken to said the wait had been worth it.

Grace Collins, 18, said she didn't mind waiting three hours. "Oh my god, she is gorgeous," referring to Meghan.

Four young boys got the best spot up a tree, right next to the crowd barriers.

One of them, DJ Katia, said he had been waiting up the tree for just over an hour. His mum, Trudy, said it was a great idea, although he ended up getting a better view than her.

Janine Colenso from Rotorua presented Meghan with a framed miniature korowai intended for Meghan and Harry's baby. She said it is tradition to give the first one you make away. She was hopeful Meghan would take it and her eyes lit up when she walked past her, stopped and took the gift.

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex meet a young fan. Photo / Pool
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex meet a young fan. Photo / Pool

Cam McKinnon, a British Kiwi, said Meghan looked very royal considering she hadn't been doing it for that long.

Sophia, Lily, Charlotte and Sophie from Ngakuru were ecstatic when Harry took their traditional NZ Buzzy Bees which they had wanted to give them for their Christmas tree.

Rotorua royal watcher Barry Jenkins said it was incredible. "It is a great day."

Debbie Whare and Reta Mutua had been waiting since 10am and had a fluffy kiwi toy to give Meghan and Harry. "We hope they take it for their baby."

They were thrilled when Meghan took the stuffed toy.

Carey Bryant went along at 2.30pm with her friends and although didn't get a great spot, being three rows back, still managed to have her hand shaken by Prince Harry. "I will never wash my hands again."

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex pats a dog at the public walkabout at the Rotorua Government Gardens. Photo / Pool
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex pats a dog at the public walkabout at the Rotorua Government Gardens. Photo / Pool

Alison and Axel, 6, King got to talk to Harry after the prince spotted Axel's Heads Together charity headband.

Alison, who is English but now lives in Rotorua, said he charity was formed by Harry with William and Kate.

"It was the London Marathon official charity last year when I ran it and we all got the headbands in our race packs. Harry said 'where did you get that?'.

"He asked me where we were from, if I ran the marathon and if I stole it from the charity," she laughed.

"Axel claimed it as soon as he saw it so I knew that's what he should wear today to get his attention." Rotorua mayor Steve Chadwick, who walked behind the royals during the walk through, described the atmosphere as spectacular.

"Well done Rotorua you've certainly turned it on and they were so beautiful, so natural, stopping and talking. So many are people are in tears down there. It's very special and they both knew it. I am so proud of everyone here today. I am so proud of Rotorua."

Earlier in the afternoon the royal couple got up close and personal with a New Zealand icon on their visit to Rotorua - and got to name two kiwi chicks.

Prince Harry and Meghan's fourth and final day in the country saw them visiting Rainbow Springs to see the centre's kiwi breeding programme.

Meghan and Harry meet Tihei and Koha, the kiwi chicks they named. Photo / Pool
Meghan and Harry meet Tihei and Koha, the kiwi chicks they named. Photo / Pool

Guided by Kiwis for Kiwi's Michelle Impey and Rainbow Springs husbandry manager Emma Bean, the royal couple went behind the scenes of the hatchery - where a kiwi chick hatched just minutes before their arrival.

The couple named the three-day old chicks, from Coromandel and Taranaki, Koha (meaning gift) and Tihei, from the Maori saying 'tihei mauriora' meaning 'the sneeze of life'.

A crowd had gathered around Rainbow Springs in Rotorua to greet the pair following their powhiri and lunch at Ohinemutu.

Sixteen pupils from Selwyn School were among those waiting in the car park. The group had been through Rainbow Springs earlier in the day.

The Duchess of Sussex visits Te Papaiouru Marae in Rotorua. Photo / Pool
The Duchess of Sussex visits Te Papaiouru Marae in Rotorua. Photo / Pool

Earlier today the true manaakitanga of Te Arawa was on display as the rousing voice of more than 1000 people rang out across Ohinemutu to welcome the royal couple on the final day of their tour.

Arriving at the picturesque lakeside spot the couple were greeted with cheers and beautiful sunshine.

Royal watchers in Rotorua waiting to catch a glimpse of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Photo / Pool
Royal watchers in Rotorua waiting to catch a glimpse of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Photo / Pool

A visit to St Faith's Church was first on the agenda and while the remainder of the royal entourage remained outside the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were given a tour by Reverend Tom Poata.

Poata noted the iconic Galilee Chapel window before introducing the couple to Robert Gillies, the last surviving member of "B" Company in the 28th Māori Battalion and Bryce Morrison, Rotorua RSA president.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex learn about the steaming of a pudding from Ohinemutu local Rene Mitchell at The Tamatekapua meeting house, on Te Papaiouru marae in Rotorua. Photo / AP
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex learn about the steaming of a pudding from Ohinemutu local Rene Mitchell at The Tamatekapua meeting house, on Te Papaiouru marae in Rotorua. Photo / AP

Prince Harry had a long conversation with Gillies, 93, who spent the last week helping prepare the marae.

Leaving the church the couple were draped in korowai and an eerie silence fell over the crowds as the pōwhiri began.

Prince Harry visits Te Papaiouru Marae for a formal powhiri and luncheon. Photo / Getty Images
Prince Harry visits Te Papaiouru Marae for a formal powhiri and luncheon. Photo / Getty Images

Three warriors approached the royal couple, Taiwera Kautai, Whakaue Savage and Raimona Inia.

The final wero was placed before Prince Harry, who did not break eye contact as he picked it up.

Kuia Norma Sturley, who worked tirelessly creating the korowai worn by the duchess, began the karanga.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex receive traditional cloaks at Saint Faith's Church on Te Papaiouru marae in Rotorua. Photo / Pool
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex receive traditional cloaks at Saint Faith's Church on Te Papaiouru marae in Rotorua. Photo / Pool

It was then the spine-tingling haka began outside Tamatekapua.

Kuia, kaumatua, school children and representatives of Te Arawa joined in unison, chanting from all sides of the marae atea, a conch shell sounding the royal party into the wharenui.

Inside photographs of the Queen's visit in 1953, an altar cloth gifted by Prince Andrew and a korowai originally made for the Queen was on display.

Those not invited inside made the most of the sunshine, watching the speeches on a large screen.

There were three speakers in the pōwhiri, including Monty Morrison on behalf of Te Arawa, Professor Piri Sciascia on behalf of the royal party and Te Kanawa Pitiroi on behalf of Ngāti Tuwharetoa.

There was then a hongi with the royal party before Prince Harry was invited to speak, beginning his speech completely in te reo. After finishing in te reo he thanked the group.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex receive a traditional Maori Ceremonial Welcome at the Tamatekapua meeting house, on Te Papaiouru marae in Rotorua. Photo / Pool
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex receive a traditional Maori Ceremonial Welcome at the Tamatekapua meeting house, on Te Papaiouru marae in Rotorua. Photo / Pool

"Thank you so much for the beautiful cloak you have gifted myself and the Duchess."

He said the great skill and aroha which went into making it would see it as a treasured taonga in their family.

He then led the waiata himself, singing all of the words in te reo.

Representatives of Tuwharetoa then gifted the Duke and Duchess a carved waka tewhatewha and flowers were presented to the Duchess by 8-year-old Atareta Milne.

After a speech from Rotorua mayor Steve Chadwick, and a final waiata by Timua Brennan, the Duke and Duchess were escorted to the wharekai.

The couple stopped to greet school children who had waited patiently in the hot sun as performers sang Te Arawa favourites.

Meghan visits Te Papaiouru Marae for a formal powhiri and luncheon. Photo / Getty Images
Meghan visits Te Papaiouru Marae for a formal powhiri and luncheon. Photo / Getty Images

The Duke and Duchess accepted a kete each from Rotorua Primary School students.

The kete had been made in school colours and contained a pair of poi and a collection of books by Aunty Bea.

The royal couple visited the steam boxes where their lunch was being prepared before sitting down to lunch with 180 invited guests.

The visit to Ohinemutu ended with the royal couple speaking to youth inside Te Ao Marama.

Outside some of the kapa haka performers took the opportunity to pose for photographs with the police motorbikes for the motorcade.

The remaining children sang a farewell waiata as the Duke and Duchess left.