Newly opened in the Odysea in the Desert complex is Pangaea: Land of the Dinosaurs. There are 50 animatronic dinosaurs (roughly 25-30 different species) vividly surrounded by their habitats for you to enjoy – along with additional dinosaur themed activities.
After purchasing tickets, be aware that you will pass through the gift shop before entering the dinosaur exhibit, then again when exiting. This is not a negative, just a warning for parents with children that find gift shops the best part of an attraction. Once in, you can get your photo taken (and pick it up before you exit) and then start the tour. Guided tours are available at no charge.
We roamed the aisles and occasionally touched on the screens to learn more what was before us. While the dinosaurs are not scary, sensitive children may find the multicolored lights and sounds somewhat unnerving. Our three year old brought along some of his favorite dino toys and had fun trying to find them in the displays.
Also included in the general admission price is an inflatable obstacle course (which was temporarily closed during our visit), a very small magnetic interactive display, and a fossil dig pit. Our kids loved the latter! They used the brushes and uncovered (and recovered, then uncovered again) numerous dino bones. This is a ground level activity that toddlers will love.
View our YouTube video here:
There are six other interactive stations and these cost extra, ranging from $1.50-$7.95/person, and you can purchase a package deal or buy each activity as desired. (You can also purchase a package that includes general admission and these activities. See website for details.) At the time of our visit, there was an online special of $9.95/person for all six activities (regular price $32.95). The extras included face painting, etching, sifting, a dino kart ride, a dino stationary ride and excavating a dino egg. All activities can only be done once per person, unless another ticket is purchased.
In all honesty, we were not impressed with Pangaea. For $15/person general admission (3 and under are free), you are not offered much. Our kids were done with the animatronic displays in 10 minutes. It might have kept their interest longer if they wanted to use the touch screens to learn more, but at 6 and 3, this was beyond their level.
Also, the extra activities offered were over priced, and did little but entertain. The stationary dino ride at $2.50 barely moved, no better than a stationary car ride at the mall. And $4.95 to rub a crayon over a paper? Absurd. Our daughter did love her face painting, and both kids enjoyed the short dino kart ride. The sifting station, at $7.95, was another favorite — but a well meaning employee helped our 3 year old find the bones, as if to hurry him along. (And there was no one else in line.) The bones assembled into a dino, but were cheap plastic and one didn’t stay together. There was nothing memorable in any of the activities. $15 for admission AND all these activities would be a better experience.
Is this attraction for you? We could see this place appealing to a dinosaur obsessed child, one who would be thrilled to see their favorite animal come to life. The employees were very knowledgeable and had some fun facts to pass along too. But overall, we found Pangaea costly and not worth our time. We feel children and adults alike would far enjoy the experience at Odysea Aquarium or Butterfly Wonderland.
Pangaea Land of the Dinosaurs
9500 East Via de Ventura C-100
Scottsdale, AZ 85256