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“Unique Science Museum + Zoo”

Museum of Life + Science
Ranked #4 of 84 things to do in Durham
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: The Museum of Life and Science is one of North Carolina’s top attractions. Situated on 84-acres, our interactive science park includes a science center, a butterfly conservatory which is one of the largest in the world and beautifully-landscaped outdoor exhibits which are safe havens for rescued black bears, lemurs, and endangered red wolves. The Museum's Dinosaur Trail takes visitors on a journey through the Late Cretaceous period. Other attractions include a Farmyard, Ellerbe Creek Railway, Contraptions – a hands-on exhibit for older children and adults, a sailboat pond, The Lab in Investigate Health!, Play to Learn – an exhibit for children under six, more than 60 species of live animals and so much more. The Museum of Life and Science is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children, Stroller parking, Stairs / elevator, Bathroom facilities, Lockers / storage, Food available for purchase, Wheelchair access
Reviewed November 21, 2012

We always bring our daughter here when we visit Durham, it's a very unique combination of a children's science museum plus a small zoo. I'm not sure where else you can take kids where there's a petting zoo and butterfly and insect pavilion, a zoo with bears, wolves, and lemurs, an outdoor play area, and a full scale hands-on indoor science museum. It's also interesting enough to keep the adults happy and we usually spend at least 2-3 hours when we visit. If you're a pass member of certain other museums, admission here is free. Definitely worth a visit.

Thank mkjava
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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596 - 600 of 760 reviews

Reviewed November 14, 2012

This museum has a lot of variety with lots of hands on exhibits and interestng science exhibits along with a small variety of animals both indoors and outdoors. The butterfly and insect exhibits are really good. The outdoor animal exhibits are as good as most good zoos. The outdoor exhibits do require quite a bit of walking. Some of the indoor exhibits are more suitable for younger kids and pre-teens. This is worth the trip. It is a little pricey I think but overall it is one of the better regional museums in the State.

1  Thank Don N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2012

We had a family membership from when my daughter was 4 until she turned 8. It was wonderful to be able to go for quick visits and full days whenever we wanted to. And we never got bored!

Thank nandea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2012

This is a museum that is geared toward families and school-age children for the most part. There are a lot of exploration activities to pique a child's curiosity. Although it has been 8-10 years, I remember the butterfly house, the train, and other interactive stations.

Thank Jay P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 10, 2012

Wow, the staff at the Life & Science Museum made my niece's wedding day a wonderful day of joy & exploration for us all. From the warm greetings and discounted fees to tour earlier in the day, to wide variey of things to see & do, it was a magical place. The butterfly attrium and main building were open to us 'after hours' after the wedding ceremony and during part of the reception. A wonderful large room for dancing and fun interactive exhibits kept the attendees amused and intrigued as the happy couple had pix taken in unique and mystical settings. I believe a train ride had even been scheduled, but due to the chilly evening it was warmer to hang out with the butterflys and birds.

Thank Karen S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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