It’s been millions of years since dinosaurs roamed the earth but in Nicholls — on the outskirts of Canberra — is the National Dinosaur Museum, featuring the largest permanent collection of dinosaurs in the country. When you visit the museum, you are greeted by an outdoor garden display of life-size dinosaurs, including the star of the show — a giant 20-metre by 80-metre animatronic T-Rex! The garden is free to visit.
Inside, some of the collection highlights include an Apatosaurus tibia bone — an authentic 150-million-year-old shin bone that visitors can actually touch. There’s also the head of a Kunbarrasaurus — this was the most complete Australian dinosaur ever discovered (back in 1989 in Richmond area, QLD), a giant Stegodon skeleton, and an authentic mammoth tusk. A new addition to the museum is the virtual reality installation, where users can come face-to-face with dinosaurs and direct their movements.
Aside from dinosaurs, the museum also features many prehistoric remnants. They cover the history of life on this planet with fossils from 700-million-year-old marine fauna, through to fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals. There’s also two meteorites that visitors can touch, and a huge collection of stunning crystals.
Visitors to the museum can guide themselves through the exhibits, with interpretive and educational displays, or join a guided tour. For little ones who love dinos, parties are also on offer at the museum.
If you’re looking for somewhere close to the museum to stay, then Abode Gungahlin offers the ultimate digs. Just minutes from the museum, Abode Gungahlin features sixty-one apartment style rooms. More like suites, the rooms are huge, with plenty of room for the whole family. Features include a kitchenette, laundry facilities, bathroom products and more.