Everyone knows why people visit central Florida, right?
Yup! For Dinosaur World!
Ok, maybe not exclusively for Dinosaur World, but this gem should definitely be on your day trip list.
Just a 60 minute drive from Disney World, at exit 17 off I4, you’ll find Dinosaur World. You cannot miss it, anyone who has ever driven that stretch of I4 knows exactly where the dinosaurs are! As you approach the park you’re greeted by the famous faces of Dinosaur World.
We have been to Dinosaur World before, but not since the renovations that added a museum, a new playground, a gem mine, and some other features. We visited the park on a warm day in late May, 2014. Though the parking lot was full the park seemed almost empty. There were plenty of people visiting that day but the park is large enough that each family can travel on their own without experiencing the overwhelming crowds found at the theme parks. It was certainly a nice break from the crowds!
Your visit to Dinosaur World begins in the gift shop where you pay for admission.**
**My family and I received free admission to Dinosaur World in exchange for this review. I was not told what to post and did not guarantee a positive review. Everything in this review is the opinion of me and my family. Your experience may vary.
Current rates (May 2014)
Adults (ages 13 & up): $14.95 (+$2 for optional fossil dig)
Children ages 3-12: $11.95 (includes fossil dig)
Seniors: $12.95 (+$2 for optional fossil dig)
Children under 3: free (+$2 for optional fossil dig)
*all prices exclude tax
Excavation Package (includes admission, fish food, gem mining, and fossil dig)
Children 3-12: $18.95
Just past the gift shop you’ll find the museum which includes several moving dinosaurs. My children especially loved the museum and it’s a nice place to escape the Florida sun for a few minutes.
Outside of the museum is a playground, the fossil dig, and the gem mine. We hit the gem mine first and it was definitely the highlight of our trip. My children (ages 11, 9, and 7) had so much fun, and I was impressed at the amount of dirt the kids were given to sift. The kids enjoyed finding their treasures while Jason & I enjoyed dipping our hands in the cool water. Did I mention it was hot today?? The gem mine is open all day so there is no rush to get there.
Across from the gem mine is the fossil dig. Dig times are scheduled, the greeter in the gift shop will let you know what the times are and there is a sign outside of the dig. The dig is included with children’s admission and is available to others for a $2 upcharge. We were told the dig is only open for 15 minutes at a time. Today our kids were given about 5 minutes to sift for fossils, then they pick the three they like the best to keep. The best part is that the fossil dig guide will identify the fossils so your child knows exactly what they are taking home!
The rest of the day you will enjoy leisurely strolls through the park, which includes the Carnivore Boardwalk & Deinonychus Island. Throughout the day you can meet a real paleontologist and go on a guided tour through the Paleontology Exhibit, you don’t want to miss that! You’ll also be treated to a Triviasaurus Game Show every few hours, where you can win prizes for sharing your knowledge of dinosaurs!
I cannot express in words how much we enjoyed our day at Dinosaur World! My children kept thanking me for bringing them and asking when we can come back.
TIPS FOR YOUR TRIP:
1. Bring bottles of water. There are not water fountains conveniently locted in the park, so bring something to drink. There are some vending machines outside of the gift shop but that is it for concessions inside the park. Do yourself a favor, bring water!
2. Bring Fido! Well-behaved dogs are welcome at Dinosaur World and you can find a doggie drinking fountain in the park.
3. Bring lunch! Aside from a few snacks in the vending machine area there is no food available for purchase at Dinosaur World. You can pick up a pizza delivery menu in the gift shop but if you prefer to pack lunch there are plenty of covered picnic tables throughout the park.
What are you waiting for? Go pack your lunch, pile the kids up in the car, and GO TO DINOSAUR WORLD TODAY!! (and don’t forget to grab your coupon here!)