Prince Harry and Meghan Markle kicked off their jam-packed tour Down Under by meeting some new furry friends at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney

By Stephanie Petit
October 15, 2018 08:55 PM
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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are ready for some koala-ty time together!

After a welcome reception with Governor General Peter Cosgrove and his wife, Lady Lynne Cosgrove, the royal couple kicked off their jam-packed tour Down Under on Monday by meeting some new furry friends at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney.

Harry and Meghan, who announced that they are expecting their first child in the spring, met two koalas and their own babies (otherwise known as joeys) — all part of the institution’s breeding program. They then meet with conservation scientists who are working on efforts to reduce illegal wildlife trafficking.

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The royal couple was also introduced to Lynx, a short-legged echidna. When they asked if the animal was drooling due to stress, they were told he was simply “excited to see them.”

Meghan and Harry were introduced to a yellow-bellied glider, a type of native possum.

The royal pair also met with two adorable young fans who presented them with a bunch of native flowers.

Prince Harry and Meghan speak to 4-year-old Findlay Blue and 6-year-old Dasha Gallagher
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Meghan and Harry are introduced to a yellow-bellied glider, a type of native possum
PETER PARKS/AFP/Getty
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Both the prince and his pregnant bride crouched down so they could speak to Findlay Blue, 4, and Dasha Gallagher, 6, who adorably held each other’s hand during their chat with the royal couple.

Meghan, 37, threw a trench coat over her white “Blessed” dress by Australian designer Karen Gee for their second stop of the day. She also changed from heels into a pair of flats as she left the zoo.

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This isn’t the first royal visit to the Taronga Zoo. Prince William and Kate Middleton met a sweet animal while on their 2014 tour with Prince George, when he was just a baby.

Earlier in the day, the newlyweds were presented with their first gift for the new addition — a fluffy stuffed kangaroo (complete with a baby joey!) and fleece Ugg booties.

“That’s so cute, it’s our first baby gift,” Meghan said.

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Next up, Meghan and Harry will take a spectacular journey across Sydney Harbour to the Sydney Opera House, where they will be entertained with a rehearsal of Spirit 2018 by the Bangarra Dance Theatre, an acclaimed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander modern dance company.

The tour “will focus on youth leadership, and projects being undertaken by young people to address the social, economic, and environmental challenges of the region,” the palace said in a statement. Harry “is particularly keen to highlight these youth-led initiatives in his new role as Commonwealth Youth Ambassador, and to shine a light on the work and aspirations of young people across the Commonwealth.”