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“bit underwhelmed”

Dinosaur State Park & Museum
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: This state park is devoted to dinosaurs and contains several dinosaur footprints.
Reviewed July 17, 2013

We went here with high expectations, our boys Love dinosaurs. The idea of seeing actual dinosaur footprints, how cool is that? It was interesting how they actually built the museum around the excavated footprints and seeing them was interesting, for about 5 minutes. Then we were looking for what's next. The displays around the central viewing area were pretty minimal. I feel like they could have done so much more to play up the whole dino theme. We did watch a 20 minute movie which gave you some background info on the formation of the foot prints, our 9 year old was old enough to appreciate that but the 4 year old was bored silly. They also did a live animal presentation but again there was too much talking with just a quick walk by and pet at the very end. I had heard the walking trails around the museum are good, but we couldn't do them because of the rain. Overall, we were there about an hour and half and really felt like we were stretching it to kill time before we could get lunch.

3  Thank jennifertravelsworld
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"foot prints"
in 6 reviews
"dino tracks"
in 8 reviews
"make your own"
in 10 reviews
"gift shop"
in 17 reviews
"soda machine"
in 3 reviews
"bring your own"
in 9 reviews
"discovery room"
in 7 reviews
"day trip"
in 10 reviews
"nature walk"
in 3 reviews
"interactive exhibits"
in 4 reviews
"butterfly garden"
in 4 reviews
"state park"
in 9 reviews
"plaster cast"
in 4 reviews
"great for kids"
in 3 reviews
"whole family"
in 3 reviews
"new england"
in 4 reviews
"footprints"
in 36 reviews
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149 - 153 of 212 reviews

Reviewed June 18, 2013

My son loves dinosaurs so we brought him here. The trails are interesting. The museum is very cool in the summer and hot in the winter. There are interesting exhibits. The tracks are interesting. X rating 7.7

1  Thank JohnX269
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2013

Dinosaur Park's pavilion covers exposed rock which is covered with dinosaur tracks that were unearthed during an excavation for a building some years back. Fortunately, the building got erected elsewhere and the state stepped in to protect the find.

Around the pavilion are several display cases showing such things as dinosaur skeletons and mock-ups of the small dinosaur's that created the tracks.

But, don't stop with the pavilion. Outside, children are encouraged to make plaster of paris impressions of a track. And, for the entire family, there are several trails going off into the woods where one can take a variety of 20-30 minutes hikes that cross wetlands on bridges, go through the woods where several markers point things out, and some flower gardens.

It's a great place to stroll about, to take pictures, and to spot frogs, butterfly, dragon flies, birds, and non-poisonous snakes.

It's a nice choice for a too-warm (but not too muggy) day, well worth a bit of a journey.

1  Thank Tom_richards67
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 30, 2013

A short drive drive off of I-91, Dinosaur State Park is worth a visit for anyone with an interest in Dinosaurs or some interesting ancient local history. The dinosaur tracks were discovered some 50 years ago and represent one of the largest on-site displays of dino tracks anywhere in the world.

The tracks are housed in a large domed building and the displays are very interesting for young and old alike. After walking through some interactive exhibits the pathway leads directly over the tracks for a close look (walking directly on the tracks is not allowed). A few life-sized dinosaurs are displayed along the walkway in a very well done diorama-like setting. There is an attached reading/activity room with different things for young kids to do. There is also a small theatre which shows two films, one a 30 minute documentary and another short claymation film for the kids on dinosaurs which the kids liked and was quite funny.

This is a small museum and will not take much longer than 20 minutes or so to work your way through. If you see the films that would add about another hour.

Just outside the building there is an area where you can make your own imprints of dinosaur tracks to take home. (Need to bring your own supplies - see website for details). I remember doing this when I was a child!

There are also 2 miles of maintained nature trails directly behind the museum, trail maps are available and the trails are well marked. They lead through forested areas, a maple swamp and edge of a ridge. You do not need to pay admission to access the trails.

I'm not sure this park would qualify as a destination in itself unless you or your kids were true total dinosaur enthusiasts. Given the close location to I-91 it is a great place to stop on your way north or south through CT.

2  Thank Duna36
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 22, 2013

Boy _ can remember going here on a school field trip and it's still just as interesting! Don't miss this one on your way through Rocky Hill!

1  Thank caribbeanfruit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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