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The Royal Albatross Centre

Taiaroa Head | Otago Peninsula, Dunedin, New Zealand
+64 3 478-0499
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7-Day South Island Coastal Splendor Tour from...
Ranked #16 of 37 Attractions in Dunedin
Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Outdoors
Activities: Viewing wildlife
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Attraction details
Owner description: Taiaroa Head is alive with wildlife species, many of them scarce nesting seabirds. Our jewel in the crown is the Northern Royal Albatross. Experience it for yourself by taking a guided tour through the Nature Reserve into the viewing Observatory. The latest Lonely Planet publication "1000 Ultimate Sights 2012" features the Royal Albatross Centre alongside the Taj Mahal and Grand Canyon. They say of us: Here at one of New Zealand's hottest attractions the draw card is the bird life. Taiaroa Head is the site of the world's only mainland royal albatross breeding ground, where you can observe the spectacle of the albatrosses with wingspans of up to 3m coming in to land like a succession of 747s. The Royal Albatross Centre is located on the tip of the Otago Peninsula, about a 45 minute drive from Dunedin. We are operated by the Otago Peninsula Trust, a charitable trust formed in 1967 for the protection of the local natural environment. The Nature Reserve on Taiaroa Head is managed by the Department of Conservation.Taiaroa Head is also famous in New Zealand history. From a small Maori camp in the 1300s to a fortified pa where the Treaty of Waitangi was signed in 1840; from a wooden flagstaff to 1864 lighthouse to radar entrance for Otago Harbour; from an 1880s underground fortress to a large defence base in WWII. Taiaroa Head is today a Nature Reserve and an iconic wildlife attraction.
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444 reviews from our community

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English first
Newcastle Australia
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
11 attraction reviews
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 24, 2014 NEW

Loved this experience being so close to these beautiful birds. Our guide Laura was very good she seemed to know everything about the albatross. The drive out to the peninsula along the harbour was very scenic as well . Highly recommended.

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Oldenzaal, Overijssel, Netherlands
20 reviews 20 reviews
14 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 23, 2014 NEW via mobile

did the penguin tour in the evening with my girlfriend. Saw lots of them come ashore (à few hunderd) at dusk! Great to see!

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 22, 2014 NEW

This was a great tour. I was going to recommend making sure you have the very lovely Josh as a guide but, reading the other reviews, it sounds like they're all great... but Josh is the best :-) It took a while to see an albatross in flight but that's ok, you can't control these things. I'd thoroughly recommend doing... More

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Paihia, New Zealand
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2014 NEW

We booked a 6 pm tour but arrived a couple of hours early. Saw albatross from the lookout, seals up close down by the sea. There was a very good display and the tour took us to a lookout/hide where we saw a nesting albatross and other adults flying in and out. Our guide was very knowledgeable. A great trip!

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Dallas, Texas
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
20 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2014 NEW

The Royal Albatross Centre provided a nice video to inform us about the albatross and our guide was informative through out the tour. the viewing was limited due to location but several were flying because it was very windy, the tour guide provides examples of baby birds, the tour of the military gun was interesting and lots of gulls on... More

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Spratton, Uk
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
26 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2014

Take the tour and try go with Mary, she was brilliant. This is really the best way to see the albatross close. We saw 2 nesting and Several flying. There were lots of other birds nesting.

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Southampton, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
219 reviews 219 reviews
129 attraction reviews
93 helpful votes 93 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2014 via mobile

We went on a very clear , dry and windy day , able to get a tour at a few minutes notice in the afternoon. All the staff were very pleasant and helpful , we had a tour of 90 minutes if was very educational. Managed to see the Albatrosses both on the ground and flying around hill top as... More

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Newcastle, Australia
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
17 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2014

I did enjoy this, we were on a very windy day so got to see them flying. I am a keen photographer and the temporary viewing location had many barriers, almost impossible to photograph the birds in flight from this location. The guide was informative, we did see two birds pretty close, one sitting on a nest, but in the... More

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Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
10 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2014 via mobile

We did the basic tour and saw one albatross sitting on a nest. Guide was informative but one could probably learn just as much by reading info in the visitor center. Take the tour only if you are sure to see albatross chicks or If there is likely to be flight activity.

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Colorado, United States
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
14 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2014

The albatross might just not be there. So go into the center to learn all about them. Fascinating information and they have half an albatross nailed to the wall. What could be better!

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