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Friday, April 28, 2023

The Dinosaur Place - Oakdale, Connecticut

Adam has mentioned visiting this dinosaur park for weeks. Truth be told, I wasn't nearly as excited for this excursion. It seemed pretty basic, dinosaurs at a park, and expensive for a family. I went in with low expectations on a weekday in April with Adam and Whitney to see what the park was all about. Within just a few minutes, I was on board with the dinosaur place and can assure you it's worth the admission fee, especially when all the amenities are open in the summer. 

The park is very well done with beautiful walking trails and a ton of activities for the kids. Yes, it is a bit pricey but it is easily somewhere you can spend a few hours or even the day. This 60-acre dinosaur themed park is entirely outdoors. You can walk the beautifully maintained trails to see over 40 dinosaurs spread throughout the park (all with great descriptive placards), spend some time on the playgrounds, enjoy a hot summer day at the splash pad (complete with it's own restroom and changing area), eat at the on-site little restaurant/grill, enjoy your own packed lunch at the picnic areas throughout the park, journey through a maze, spend some time in the two story playscape, take the littles to the awesome toddler area with bikes and a train, and end the day with a game of mini golf (ages 6+). 

There is a lot to do on this property and it's a great way to spend the day with a dinosaur obsessed toddler or very active young kids. We went in April where a few things were still closed (splash pad, Lapilli Landing) but we will absolutely be back in the summer with a picnic to enjoy the park again, the splash pad especially. 

The Dinosaur Place Connecticut

What to do

Follow the trails around the park (1.5 miles in total) to see the various dinosaurs. Stop at the volcano to see it erupt every hour on the hour.

Splash Pad: Slip-resistant footwear is mandatory at all times (closed until May 20th)

A-MAZE-asaurus: challenging maze with a slide through the giant mouth of a Tyrannosaurus Rex

T-Rex Tower: Two-story playscape with dozen of challenging features. Socks are required (opens for weekdays starting May 20th, currently Friday, Saturday and Sunday only)

The Dinosaur Place Connecticut

Additional fee areas

Lapilli Landing * (in the park, open May 20)
Ppedal car track ($6 for 4 loops)
Lucky Leroy Train Ride ($6 for a ride)
6-hole mini golf (toddlers) 
Lil Tikes Trikes (2 - 5 years old)

Discovery Depot - geodes and gold mining 

Copper Creek Mini Golf (ages 6+)


Open every day
10 AM – 6 PM (last entry: 5 PM)

Pre-Season Prices (April 1 – June 8):
Mon. – Thurs: Under 2: FREE,
Toddler (2-5 years): $22.99
Child (6-17 years): $25.99
Adult (18-59 years): $22.99
Senior (60+ years): $21.99

Fri – Sun., Holidays + School Breaks
Under 2: Free
Toddler (2-5 years): $26.99
Child (6-17 years): $29.99
Adult (18-59 years): $26.99
Senior (60+ years): $25.99

Need to Know

  • There is no readmission. Make sure you pack in everything you need from the car. 
  • There are plenty of spots to enjoy lunch and there is also food for sale in the park. 
  • We had no problem traversing the unpaved trails with our stroller. A stroller with bigger wheels is advised (small travel strollers may struggle). This is also a great place for a kids wagon. The park is big so if you have babies or toddlers, I recommend a stroller or wagon to get around. 
  • There are other things to do outside of the Dinosaur Place. There are various shops and activities in the shopping center surrounding the park. 
  • The splash pad and Lapilli Landing are closed until May 20.
  • Slip-resistant footwear is mandatory at all times in the splash pad area.

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