Princess Anne led a flotilla of around 40 boats along the Forth and Clyde canal to the giant horse-head sculptures.
Crowds turned out to mark the occasion and to catch a glimpse of the Princess Royal.
Sculptor Andy Scott was present for the opening, along with Duke – the Clydesdale horse which was one of the models for the heads.
Since their completion in 2014, The Kelpies have stood at the heart of The Helix and have been a huge tourism draw to the area, proving popular with locals and visitors alike.
Falkirk Herald photographer Michael Gillen captured the official opening through these photographs.