Dinosaur Days Out in New Zealand
If your kids love dinosaurs and want to go on a fun dino day out, here are our picks of where to go. Discover giant moving dinosaurs and life sized replica dinosaur bones on our list of the best Dinosaur Days Out in New Zealand.
Auckland Dinosaur Days Out
1. Dinosaur Kingdom at Butterfly Creek, Auckland
Travel back in time with the kids to when dinosaurs ruled the earths at Dinosaur Kingdom. Our favourite dinosaurs are the interactive giant life size Diplodocus, T-Rex and Velociraptor. You can see more than 50 dinosaurs including a Plesiosaur, Velociraptor, Triceratops, Dilophosaurus, Archaeopteryx, Stegosaurus, Spinosaurus and Sauropod dinosaurs. The animatronic dinosaurs road and move to make them ever more realistic. Butterfly Creek also has a Mythic Creatures exhibition, Farm Animals, Kiwis, Crocodiles, Tamarin Monkeys, a Butterfly House and Playground as well as dinosaurs to discover and enjoy on a family day out.
2. Auckland Museum, Auckland
At Auckland Museum’s Origin Gallery you can get up close and see the life sized replica skeletons of the four metre tall cryolophosurus and malawiaurus and the flying pteranodon. Learn about how New Zealand split from Gondwana aroun 100 million years ago
3. T-Rex Alley Mini Golf, Auckland
Discover T Rex Alley mini golf course with it’s own 5 metre high Brachiosaurus at what was Auckland’s very fist mini golf course which is on Tamaki drive with Waitemata Harbour just across the road and bike lanes.
4. Dinosaur Gully at Crystal Mountain, Auckland
See the life sized T-Rex, Stegosaurs and Brachiosauras dinosaurs at Crystal Mountain in West Auckland. Crystal Mountain also has an farm animal park and crystal mine museum to discover on your visit.
More North Island places to find dinosaurs
5. Dinosaur House, Ruapehu
See dinosaur skeletons, walk among life-size reconstructions and learn about their amazing prehistoric world at Dinosaur House, a small family-friendly dinosaur museum located in a heritage building in the town of Raetihi, which is about a10min drive from Ohakune.
6. Kowhai Park, Whanganui
Kids can have fun playing on the dinosaur slide at Kowhai Park on Anzac Parade in Whanganui.
7. Te Papa Tongarewa | Museum of New Zealand, Wellington
Te Papa holds one of the first recognised dinosaur fossils in their collections.
South Island Dinosaur Days Out
8. Canterbury Museum, Christchurch
See the skeleton of an Allosaurus dinosaur and the bones of the huge predatory marine reptile the mosasaur in the Geology section of the Canterbury Museum in Christchurch. Younger children will also like digging for fossils in the Discovery natural history centre of children.
9. Marlow Dinosaur Park, Dunedin
Visit the Dinosaur Park (officially called Marlow Park) with a stegosaurus dinosaur slide and fun diplodocus swings in St Kilda Dunedin. The park also has more things to play on and a basketball court, small skatepark and a learn to ride bike park complete with road sign markings. Afterwards you can head down to St Kilda’s beach which is right next to the park for a paddle.
10. Otago Museum, Dunedin
See New Zealand’s largest fossil, the seven-metre-long 70 million-year-old Shag Point plesiosaur (sea serpent) at Otago Museum. They lived though the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods – the dinosaur era – and died out with the dinosaurs. You can also see the southern moa articulated skeletons which became extinct 500 years ago.
11. Wanaka Dinosaur Park, Wanaka
Take the kids to play on the dinosaur slide and playground in the Roys Bay Recreational Reserve Dinosaur Park next to Wanaka’s township and overlooking the stunning lake.