PHOTOS: Prince George gets a lift as Will & Kate head to Oz

Apr 16, 2014 at 11:29 a.m. ET

The first portion of Will & Kate's tour down under has finished as the couple left New Zealand with Prince George for the sunnier climes of Australia.

Prince William Kate Middleton Prince George
Photo credit: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge left New Zealand today, but the royal tour continues — now in Australia.

Kate finally let Will carry Prince George in public again for the first time since they left the hospital after the tot's birth in July as they boarded a jet bound for Australia. Wearing a recycled blue Rebecca Taylor suit with her hair pulled back in the wind, Kate waved enthusiastically while Will toted a more reticent-looking George.

VIDEO: Will & Kate greeted by thong-clad warriors in New Zealand >>

"As you all know, this is Catherine's first visit to New Zealand, and the two of us could not be more grateful for the way in which we have been made to feel so very welcome," Will said in a farewell speech. "There have been many highlights from the past 10 days in this beautiful country — Catherine beating me at sailing does not count amongst them, not for me anyway."

Praising the "resilience and adaptability" of New Zealand, he specifically mentioned the city of Christchurch, which weathered a devastating earthquake in 2011. "You should be proud that, because of the undaunted spirit of New Zealanders, Christchurch is a city that has chosen not only to survive but to thrive," Prince William said. "Catherine and I look forward to returning to see how this historic and yet energetic, 21st century city takes shape."

PHOTOS: Prince George makes new friends at royal playdate >>

Kate Middleton Prince William
Photo credit: WPA Pool/Getty Images

The royals then took off for Australia, where they continued the tour on their first stop in Sidney. Both Kate and George made a quick change in the plane, Kate into a sunny yellow and white color-blocked dress from Roksanda Ilincic and George into a smocked jumper.

While the wool crepe dress marked a fashionable departure from some of the more drab outfits Kate donned in New Zealand, not everyone was a fan.

"William said I look like a banana," she told a woman in the crowd.

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Prince William and the Duchess attended a reception at the Sidney Opera House later that evening at which the future king praised the country's willingness to help others in their time of need.

"Australia has much to contend with at the moment: your contribution to the ongoing search for MH370 has earned respect in every quarter of the globe," he said. "Australia's determined and leading role in the search is at the very edge of technological ability and human endurance."

And Will couldn't let the moment escape without mention of his adorable son.

"I don't think I could finish these brief words to you without mentioning one other family member, George, who is now busy forging his own link with Australia. Catherine and I were very grateful for the many kind messages and gifts from across the country that we received when George was born. I suspect George's first word might be 'bilby' — only because 'koala' is harder to say. We really look forward to our time here together as a family."

PHOTOS: Will & Kate have a busy weekend down under >>

Watch Australia's warm greeting for Will & Kate


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