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“Imaginative presentations for good collection” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Royal Ontario Museum

Royal Ontario Museum
100 Queen's Park Crescent | At Bloor St., Toronto, Ontario M5S 2C6, Canada (Downtown Toronto)
416-586-8000
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$69*
and up
Toronto CityPass
Ranked #9 of 250 Attractions in Toronto
Type: History Museums, Natural History Museums, Museums
Activities: Group tours/walking tour, Dining
More attraction details
Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is among the world’s leading museums of natural history and world cultures. In combining a universal museum of cultures with that of natural history, the ROM offers an unusual breadth of experience to our audiences from around the world. We realize more acutely now that nature and humanity are intertwined, and the ROM offers many examples in its collections and programs of these fundamental relationships.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
55 attraction reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Imaginative presentations for good collection”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 23, 2013

We found the show on recently discovered dinosaurs very well presented, with audio-visuals that went well beyond most museums, presenting a lot of recent learning in the area most enjoyably. The ROM has some very good areas of concentration, and does them very well (Chinese artifacts, for example). There is also a very nice restaurant on the 5th floor for those who need a good place with good and imaginative cooking, as well as the usual collection of faster food.

Visited February 2013
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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Greek first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
13 attraction reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“One of the BEST attractions in Toronto!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 23, 2013

We unfortunately could only find time to come to the ROM on Family Day. There was a HUGE line-up and the first floor was crowded with children and parents. However, it had scattered all over it plenty of activities for kids to do. Had we had children with us, they probably would have had a blast. There was colouring things, they could make neat wings, and there was even a cute Dinosaur costume-buddy for kids to pose with!

The ROM is big, and if you plan to see it all, plan the whole day away. We were late and couldn't possible read/go through everything, which is a shame, because all exhibits have tons of information to read up on.

It's very clean compared with any other attraction! You'll feel very comfortable. The first floor boasts some neat things from Canada, like old Furniture and magazines. There's also exhibits from other countries, like China - unfortunately we didn't have enough time to see them.

Coming up the stairs to the second floor, there's two massive totem poles. They are very beautiful and real. My partner's parents from Russia loved posing with them and they ran about two or three floors high!

We went to the Dinosaur exhibit first. They have all Dinosaur periods listed and REAL Dinosaur bones (mixed with fake). Fortunately, they're kind enough to inform you which part of the Dinosaurs are fake bone and which are real. They also have ancient animals from the sea, my favourite is a HUGE skeleton of a BIG sea turtle. They compare Bird bones with Dinosaurs; and have bugs millions of years old preserved in sap. A lot of the exhibits have touch-screen movies to give you more information.

They also have an exhibit about Canada's forests. It's beautiful done and very realistic. There's a bird exhibit with thousands of flying birds posed realistically. The hands-on stuff is amazing. One lady working there allowed you to touch a roll of snake skin. There were stuff kids would love to do.

They had exhibits (although I can't recall all of the floors and their order), from Greece to Egypt. You learn a lot about Egyptians and how civilized they were. (Like Woman living in Egypt actually nearly had equal rights to men!) There's a mummy, a real one. They display a fake wall of a real Egyptian city or tomb. (Can't recall which.)

They had an exhibit of European living way back in the 1880's. It's very neat to observe the interiors of houses. You could even sit down and push a button to get more in-depth view of daily life from then.

One of my favourites is the exhibit displaying rocks and minerals. It's stunning. You can even see this rare diamond-like one which glitters brilliantly.

My only issues with the place? Well, my partner's parents are from Russia, and there was positively nothing provided in Russian or any other languages besides English and French. I understand that this is fair, but they were very interested in reading information and were saddened that they could not understand it. Perhaps it's far too much work for all of the different countries.

Their gift shop, is, like most, over priced, but you'll find neat stuff for the kids like joke books on Canada and cheap things with the ROM name.

If we had more time, I'm sure we were have been far more delighted.

It's a must-see in Toronto!

Visited February 2013
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Goderich, Canada
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
34 attraction reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Disappointed”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

First, let me say I would go back to the ROM again. It was just not what I had remembered it being. Also, the new Dinosaur Exhibit is lame and geared to children. Unless you have children with you (or even if you do) save yourself the extra 10 dollars and see the dinosaurs on the second floor for free! The second floor dinosaur exhibit is actually much better than the Gondwana one and is included at no extra cost.
Secondly, the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal is really the museums biggest downfall. I personally think it is grotesque and out of place stuck on the front of such a beautiful historic building. It is misshapen and contributes nothing to the museum. Even the interior of the Crystal is ugly...as a friend stated, it looks like IKEA. Barren, cheap looking white panel walls....what an uninteresting lobby....and that's what people get to look at while trying to get excited about exploring the museum....how uninspiring. Then there are the exhibits placed inside the Crystal. Since it is oddly shaped, the exhibits inside tend to sprawl over several rooms with no clear sense of direction or viewing order....we found ourselves often looping back on ourselves and not realizing it....and then there is the walkway that leads into a wall....I could clearly write an entire review about how much I hate that freaking Crystal, but I won't waste your time.....I think you get my point.
As for the rest of the museum, the exhibits are well laid out and stuffed with artifacts and information. We had a short visit, but managed to wander through most of the big exhibits. The leaf cutter ant colony is a personal favorite, as is the mummy.
What I do really like about the ROM is that unlike other big museums I've been to, which tend to use gaudy, colorful displays to make people more interested, the ROM lets the artifacts speak for themselves, placing them in simple surroundings. It is ultimately, a very adult museum. Children will manage to find things they like....children always do, but adults will be able to enjoy this museum on a different level, one that caters more to their sensibilities. In other words, don't go to the ROM if your intention is to wander without stopping to read or think about anything. If that's your intention.....stay home and watch reality t.v.

Visited February 2013
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Toronto, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Very nice museum”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2013

The museum is great, there are lots of different cultures and time period to explore (first nations, China, Korea, etc). Worth taking the time to walk there, the neighborhood south of the museum is really nice.

Visited February 2013
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Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
7 attraction reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
70 helpful votes 70 helpful votes
“Fun Family Place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2013

Well organized and great place to take young ones one a cold or rainy day. Arrive early on the weekend as it can take ten minutes to buy your tickets at mid-day.

Visited February 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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