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“Dinosaurs and Butterflies!”

Museum of Life + Science
Ranked #3 of 74 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.
NC
Level Contributor
22 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Dinosaurs and Butterflies!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 July 2014

The indoor exhibits/interactives are great, but the Dinosaur Trail and the Butterfly House are terrific. There are also really great bear enclosures and fun things to do along the various trails.

We spent 4 hours there and could have stayed longer.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
Thank seatrekkie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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688 reviews from our community

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English first
Fayetteville, North Carolina
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Amazing Combination of Science and Nature”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 July 2014 via mobile

I know nature is technically science, but this museum has so much to offer and it no where near as crowded at Marbles in Raleigh. The outdoor section is fun for the kids with life - size models of dinosaurs, a black bear enclosure and lemurs. The butterfly exhibit was the climax of our visit with butterflies landing on my children. The food in the cafe is a little pricey, but they have a surprising selection. This is a must see while in Durham.

Helpful?
1 Thank alomd11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lori B, Public Relations Manager at Museum of Life + Science, responded to this review, 25 August 2014
What kind words, alomd11. Thank you for taking a moment to share them with this community.

We love hearing what our visitors enjoyed most while visiting - so we're elated that Magic Wings Butterfly House met your approval. Next time you visit, we highly recommend attending one of our daily butterfly releases. Led by our resident butterfly experts, these free daily programs give you a behind-the-scenes, up close and personal look at the life cycles of our butterflies and you even get the opportunity to help release the newly hatched specimens into the conservatory. You can find more information about these daily programs and others on the events calendar on our website.
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Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
57 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Great active museum for young & old! Spend the day!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 July 2014

We spent the day at the Museum of Life and Science with our 10 year old and 7 year old. Our party also had a grandmother that utilized the complimentary wheelchair and got along just fine. Kids LOVED the outdoor experiences with the playground, train, dinosaur walk. Kids had a great time digging for fossils. Don’t skip the insect exhibit in the butterfly house--it was awesome.

Saw lots of cool animals and spent just as long inside creating paper airplanes, making things fly, investigating weather, making tornados and creating a cool contraptions. Loved this museum!

Kids loved the ME sized sinks, petting zoo, insect exhibits and all the hands on activities.
Parents loved the shaded umbrellas at each exhibit, healthy choices in the cafe and plenty to do to keep all entertained.

Tip-may want to wear tennis shoes for kids and adults --there is some walking outside and lots of play structures. Also wear hat/sunscreen :) we forgot ours!

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
Thank A_Roswell_Family
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lori B, Public Relations Manager at Museum of Life + Science, responded to this review, 25 August 2014
Wow A_Roswell_Family! It sounds like you guys wrote our brochure!

We're so happy to hear that you were able to experience the wide range of exhibit offerings we have from our 2 story indoor science center to our 85+ acre campus.

Since you loved the Insectarium, next time you visit, consider attending one of our free daily programs like Feeding Frenzy in the Insectarium, daily at 2:30pm or a butterfly release in the Magic Wings Butterfly House conservatory daily at 11am and 3pm. These programs are led by our insect and butterfly experts and give you the opportunity to get up close and personal with our resident critters. You can learn more about these free daily programs on our events calendar on our website.

Thank you for taking a moment to share such kind words. We can't wait to hear what you discover next time you visit!
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LaCrosse Wi
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Plenty to see and do”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 June 2014

My sons family went here with their two year old twins. Children under 3 are free. They enjoyed it immensely. There are so many activities to keep youngsters engaged for hours. Well worth the price of admission for adults.

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank meimajo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lori B, Public Relations Manager at Museum of Life + Science, responded to this review, 25 August 2014
We agree, meimajo - this is a place for all ages to enjoy! Whether it's exploring our wide range of animals, the hands-on science exhibits or just wandering our expansive 85+ acre campus, there's plenty to see and do no matter your age.

We're so glad you enjoyed yourselves and can't wait to host you again.

Thank you for taking a moment to share your thoughts with this community.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canton, North Carolina
Level Contributor
17 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“LOTS OF FUN”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 June 2014

I went there all the time a a kid and I tell you what it has grown in the last 30 years. We recently took out 2 1/2 old son there for his first time. There is a little train that you can ride and you can see lots of different stuff like Life Size Dinosaurs. I rode the same train when I was a kid and my wife and I got to take our son on it. He was sooooo excite and loved all the different stuff and hearing the train whist;e blow. And all the different things they have. I highly suggest it to anybody

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank nagacity
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lori B, Public Relations Manager at Museum of Life + Science, responded to this review, 25 August 2014
Thanks for sharing nagacity! We especially love hearing from our visitors who came to the Museum themselves as children. It's such an unique experience to have.

If your son loved riding the Ellerbe Creek Railway, then perhaps consider visiting next during October or December for our two train-focused special fundraisers. Pumpkin Patch Express is a great family event where hopping on the train takes you to the Museum's own pumpkin patch. Carnival games, fall science and a pumpkin slingshot are all included and you get to take home your own pint-sized pumpkin. Then, in December, we have our most popular family event Santa Train. Visit the Museum after hours to catch a ride to visit Santa and Mrs. Claus in the North Pole. Winter-themed science experiments and exploration, hot cocoa and more make this an experience not to be forgotten and a new family tradition to be made. Information on these events and more can be found on our website's event calendar.

Thank you for taking a moment to share your thoughts and we are so glad to hear you enjoyed your visit!
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