Dinosaur Place / Nature’s Art Village – Montville, CT

http://naturesartvillage.com/the-dinosaur-place/

Bored of the same ol thing? Looking for a great day trip out of MA? We had a blast with the kids at Dinosaur Place in Nature’s Art Village.  We took four kids, aged 18 months – 7 years there for the day and each one of them enjoyed it.

As soon as we walked in, the kids saw the giant playground and didn’t skip a beat trying out the various equipment. They especially like the dinosaur skull at the start which sets the stage. There was a nice toddler section for the little ones and enough challenging stuff to keep the older ones busy for at least an hour. Next to this playground is a tower playscape which let the kids climb and play some more.

We finally dragged them out of there, grabbed lunch at the cafe and then headed out to find dinosaurs.

The dinosaur part is essentially a 1.5 mile nature trail with life-sized dinosaurs hidden along the way. The kids had a blast running along the trail (each did it themselves with their short little legs (except the 18 month old) running from one to the other to see what was next. They had descriptions of the dinosaurs as well as touch and feel boxes along the way. There were two highlights towards the end: the animatronic dinosaur that comes to life in a cave as you enter and squirts water at you and the volcano that explodes every hour on the hour.

There was also an a “MAZE”asaurus at the start of the nature trail which got the kids excited. To exit, you had to slide down through a T Rex’s mouth.

Once we got the kids good and sweaty, we changed into swimsuits and headed on over to the splash pad. The splash pad is giant and did a great job cooling everyone down. To get the kids to leave, we enticed them with the Jurassic Moon Bounce House on the way out.

That was essentially what the price of admission got you. While a bit expensive, it was also a really nice and fun way to spend a day. What I liked about it was that the kids could run wild (all four of them) without getting lost and it was very clean. It didn’t give you the same feeling of overstimulation that a lot of amusement type parks give you, but rather a nice peaceful day with the kids out in nature.

There was plenty of other stuff to do there as well for an additional fee. Everything from:

  • ice cream
  • Discovery Depot – where you dig for crystals and pan for gold and dinosaur bones
  • Shops
  • Antique Market

Few things to note:

  • MUST bring socks to go in playscape and bounce house
  • MUST bring water shoes to go in splash pad
  • Smart to bring stroller to carry stuff around, esp as you hike for 1.5 miles with kids
  • Cafe inside you can grab lunch at

 

How to get there:

1650 Hartford-New London Turnpike

Montville, CT 06370

860-443-4367

  

 

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