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The Royal Albatross Centre

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1260 Harington Point Rd, Dunedin, New Zealand
+64 3-478 0499
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US$138.34*
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The only chance to see... the world's only mainland Royal Albatross Breeding Colony. A unique experience to access the nature reserve to see giant albatross court, mate, raise their chicks and show off their three metre wingspans. Taiaroa Head/Pukekura is alive with wildlife species, many of them scarce nesting seabirds. Our jewel in the crown is the Northern Royal Albatross. Experience it for yourself by taking a guided tour through the Nature Reserve into the viewing Observatory. The 2012 latest Lonely Planet publication "1000 Ultimate Sights" features the Royal Albatross Centre alongside the Taj Mahal and Grand Canyon. They say of us: Here at one of New Zealand's hottest attractions the draw card is the bird life. Taiaroa Head is the site of the world's only mainland royal albatross breeding ground, where you can observe the spectacle of the albatrosses with wingspans of up to 3m coming in to land like a succession of 747s. The Royal Albatross Centre is located on the tip of the Otago Peninsula, about a 45 minute drive from Dunedin. We are operated by the Otago Peninsula Trust, a charitable trust formed in 1967 for the protection of the local natural environment. The Nature Reserve on Taiaroa Head is managed by the Department of Conservation. Taiaroa Head is also famous in New Zealand history. From a small Maori camp in the 1300s to a fortified pa where the Treaty of Waitangi was signed in 1840; from a wooden flagstaff to 1864 lighthouse to radar entrance for Otago Harbour; from an 1880s underground fortress to a large defence base in WWII. Taiaroa Head is today a Nature Reserve and an iconic wildlife attraction.
  • Excellent57%
  • Very good26%
  • Average11%
  • Poor4%
  • Terrible2%
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Closed Now
All hours
Hours Today: 10:15 AM - 8:30 PM
Suggested Duration: 2-3 hours
LOCATION
1260 Harington Point Rd, Dunedin, New Zealand
CONTACT
Website
+64 3-478 0499
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1 - 10 of 1,308 reviews

Reviewed 5 days ago via mobile

Went to the centre and chose to do the “extra” bit where you pay a guide to take you to a hide close to the birds. Not cheap but well worth it for us. As it turned out we had a lovely guide to ourselves....More

Thank bethc3030
Reviewed 6 days ago

Just visited the center and walked around the grounds (didn't book a tour). Great information and fun lil' cafe. Could still see them soar since the breeze was perfect for the day.

Thank Stephanie D
Reviewed 1 week ago

Lovely setting on the coast. Highly recommend going in the afternoon and relax and enjoy a cup of tea in their tea shop where you can also watch the birds soar.

Thank Worldismyoyster1070
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

We booked a 5:30pm Albatross classic tour. It happened to be a windy day which is perfect for flying! We saw several albatrosses soaring in the air. Their majestic form is a sight to behold! Totally worth the entrance fees.More

1  Thank Jill1230
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Kia ora and thanks for taking the time to write a review. Thanks for supporting us by taking a tour - those tours later in the day certainly do appear to provide our visitors with some 'albatross magic'. It is indeed a special and unique...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Decided to book a tour with Elm Wildlife Tours as we were coming to Akaroa/Dunedin on the Sun Princess. The introductory talk and video was very informative, however, it was unfortunate that the birds were sitting on eggs so our view of the Albatross's was...More

1  Thank WoodyWA
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Kia ora and thank you for your review. The albatross tour offers an informative, knowledgeable hosted experience for the limited number of visitors that are permitted by the Department of Conservation to access the colony. The activity is different every day, all year around as...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We booked the last tour of the day, hoping the winds would be gusty enough for the birds to be flying. We were in luck, even from the car park we had good views of the birds in flight, unmistakable with their huge wingspan. The...More

1  Thank ChiChiBrisbane
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Kia ora and thank you for your review. The Northern Royal Albatross are best seen from our observatory on the hill of the nature reserve, the actual breeding colony itself can be seen from this great vantage point. The carpark or café only provide a...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We organised a tour to view the Albatrosses. You cannot just wander over the headland to see them, they are protected which is good as they were nesting when we were there. You view them from a glassed room with binoculars provided if you want...More

1  Thank archike
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Kia ora and thanks for taking the time to write a review. We really appreciate your great feedback and encouragement to others to meet the amazing albatross at the world's only mainland breeding colony - it is a wonderful experience and we love sharing it...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

The blue penguins at dusk are a must see! Sorry, can't find my photo. The albatross tour allows you to see a few albatross on nests. There was not enough wind for them to take off flying when we were there. You also see gulls...More

1  Thank Julietravelsalot
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Kia ora and thank you for your review. It's fantastic that you were glad you did the Blue Penguins Pukekura tour and enjoyed it so much. As a kaitiaki/guardian of the headland we are primarily driven by the conservation of all the species that call...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Many people will love the chance to see wild albatrosses, but unfortunately I found the experience underwhelming. For $NZ50, you’re given a lengthy talk on stuff you could easily find out yourself or read on panels (and might know already). Then there’s a short walk...More

1  Thank richardcrampton
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Public Relations Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Kia ora and thank you for your review. I apologise that you were underwhelmed with your albatross viewing. Its unfortunate that the weather has been so hot and breezeless the last few days - its not great for the albatross as they need a good...More

Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Go at dusk to see the little guys come home from the ocean to their nests. A great value! We saw what was probably several hundred come in over the course of the hour or so that we were there and then were able to...More

1  Thank Carol H
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 1 week ago

Kia ora and thanks for taking the time to write a review. It's fantastic that you were glad you did the Blue Penguins Pukekura tour and enjoyed it so much. The Blue Penguins Pukekura guided tour offers an informative, knowledgeable hosted experience for visitors. This...More

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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
Ozziepore
1 December 2017|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from OtagoPeninsulaTrust | Property representative |
Hi there and thanks for the question. Mid February is continuing the hatching and guard stage, where there is an adult always with the chicks. There are also adolescent birds coming, going and displaying. Our observatory is... More
0
Votes
nysteffi
1 October 2017|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from OtagoPeninsulaTrust | Property representative |
Kia ora, thank you for your enquiry. It depends what tour you book we sometimes have a Unique Tiki Tour that picks Visitors up from the cruise ship in the morning before dropping them back into Dunedin city about lunch time... More
1
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Ralphie2014
20 August 2017|
AnswerShow all 2 answers
Response from OtagoPeninsulaTrust | Property representative |
Kia ora Ralphie, October is the season for the return of the breeding birds. The breeding pairs are beginning to set up their nesting sites. As with all wildlife what you see on any given day is a complete surprise, even to... More
2
Votes