Watch: Prince Harry completes Māori wero during traditional pōwhiri, leads royal party onto Rotorua marae

Prince Harry has led a party on to Te Papaiouru Marae in Rotorua this morning after partaking in the wero process during a traditional pōwhiri.

The Duke of Sussex, wearing a korowai given to him prior to the welcoming much like the one designed for his wife, picked up the final baton in the wero laid down by warrior.

A full wero involves three challengers, each with a baton or rākau that represents different stages in the developing trust between the visiting party and the hosts.

The rākau whakaara (warning baton) is laid down by the first challenger, followed by the rākau takoto (baton laid down) and the second challenger. Each rākau is picked up by the guests before the next is presented.

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    The beautiful cloak pays homage to her royal status, her pregnancy and her Californian roots. Source: 1 NEWS

    Prince Harry stepped forward after being challenged by the third warrior who knelt down and laid the rākau whakawaha (baton that clears the way) in front of him. Prince Harry picked it up and gestured his peaceful intentions to the welcoming party before being led on by the third challenger.

    Prince Harry and the party were then called on to the marae with a karanga before the voices of hundreds surrounded them with a haka pōwhiri.

    Once inside the marae, the Duke of Sussex will engage in the spoken part of the welcoming - the whaikōrero - before exiting the wharenui and coming together for a hākari or feast to lift the tāpu (sacredness) of the pōwhiri.

    Harry and Meghan Markle will then leave the marae for the rest of their activities in Rotorua on what is the final day of their tour.

    They will head to Rainbow Springs to learn more about the centre's kiwi breeding programme before a public walkabout in the Rotorua CBD set down for mid-afternoon.

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      The Duke of Sussex picked up the rākau whakawaha before walking on to Te Papaiouru Marae. Source: 1 NEWS

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