Olympians ready to begin Sydney parade

Australia's Olympic athletes are preparing to walk down the streets of central Sydney for their first welcome home parade since arriving back from London.

They are gathering at Circular Quay as police close off George Street and surrounding roads for the parade that starts at midday (AEST).

Sailor and silver medal winner Nina Curtis says she's excited.

"I've got some friends and family who are coming out to watch and it's going to be a lot fun," she told AAP.

"(The fans) are all really excited and when you get your medal out everyone wants a photo."

Track and field finalist Steven Solomon says he's watched welcome home parties on television before and it's a dream to be in one.

"It's really great to be here today," he said.

"You never know if this could be your last (Olympics) so I'm really looking forward to sharing the day with my team mates."

The Sydney parade is the first of a number that will be held around the country.

Silver and bronze medallist, swimmer James Magnussen, said despite not winning gold he hoped his achievements had meant a lot to his fans.

"It will be good to get out there today and say thank you to those who supported me," he told reporters.

"I set myself some high goals and fell slightly short, but one of the things I'm proudest of is the way I handled those disappointments.

"While the media might have given me a bit of a hammering it's important to know the people that matter are still behind me."

Mr Magnussen said his family and friends were in his home town of Port Macquarie but he was looking forward to mingling with his Sydney fans during the parade.

"If I can see some fans and put some smiles on faces that will make my day," he said.

Sailing gold medallist and closing ceremony flag bearer Malcolm Page said he was looking forward to walking in the parade in his home town.

"One of the highlights for me in these parades is actually seeing all the kids and giving them a high five," Mr Page told reporters, adding that his two nephews had taken the day off school to come and see him.

Mr Page, who was competing in his last Olympics in London, said having sailing recognised as a medal winning sport was important for the team.

"Out of the 13 athletes on the sailing team, eight of us came away with some bling," he said.

"We have been a traditional winner for some time but we have not been in the public limelight and it's great that it has been recognised this time."

NSW Governor Marie Bashir addressed the athletes before they set off on the parade.

"We all know it's the sport, not the outcome, but the outcome has been superb," Ms Bashir said.

"There's no doubt that you're serving as very powerful role models for young people.

"Countless young Australians will be striving to aspire to your ranks."

Ms Bashir was presented with the signatures of all the athletes by flag bearers Lauren Jackson and sailor Malcolm Page.

Huge crowds have lined the streets awaiting the parade.

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