All Blacks touch down in London

1:27 pm on 12 September 2015

The All Blacks have been treated to a warm reception on their arrival in London for the Rugby World Cup.

Just hours after arriving from Auckland the squad was officially welcomed in a ceremony at the Tower of London.

New Zealand's Owen Franks, Dan Carter, Kieran Read and Victor Vito attend a welcoming ceremony for the New Zealand All Blacks team at the Tower of London.

New Zealand's Owen Franks, Dan Carter, Kieran Read and Victor Vito attend a welcoming ceremony for the New Zealand All Blacks team at the Tower of London. Photo: AFP

They were greeted at the World Heritage Site, which is famous for many executions as well as housing the Crown Jewels, by tournament organisers and the Lord Mayor of London, Alan Yarrow.

The 31-man squad was also presented with commemorative caps and participation medals, while a local school choir performed the tournament's official anthem World in Union.

Following the ceremony the defending world champions were greeted by hundreds of rugby supporters outside - many of them wearing All Blacks jerseys - and the squad spent time signing autographs and posing for photographs.

Captain Richie McCaw, who will play in his fourth World Cup, said it was a special day for the whole squad, despite the tiredness from the long-haul flight.

"For those of us that have been here before it reminds you what it's all about."

"Hopefully the guys that haven't experienced it before, they realise just how big this tournament is so I think now the guys just can't wait to get to next weekend to be honest."

The All Blacks in their commemorative caps.

The All Blacks in their commemorative caps. Photo: RNZ/ Alex Coogan-Reeves

New Zealand's Victor Vito, Wyatt Crockett, Luke Romano, Sam Whitelock and Kieran Read pose for a photograph as they attend a welcoming ceremony for the All Blacks.

New Zealand's Victor Vito, Wyatt Crockett, Luke Romano, Sam Whitelock and Kieran Read pose for a photograph as they attend a welcoming ceremony for the All Blacks. Photo: AFP

Coach Steve Hansen was also impressed with the way the occasion was run and was full of praise for tournament organisers.

"England 2015 have probably organised the best tournament thus far in World Cup history," he said

"They've learned from previous World Cups and all the preparations and dealings we've had with them have been fantastic so we're excited about that."

The All Blacks will turn their focus to promotional work for the next two days, before beginning training for their opening pool game against Argentina early next week.

Fans await the All Blacks' arrival in London.

Fans await the All Blacks' arrival in London. Photo: RNZ/ Alex Coogan-Reeves

All Blacks' arrival in London.

Photo: RNZ/ Alex Coogan-Reeves