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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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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.
  • Excellent58%
  • Very good26%
  • Average10%
  • Poor4%
  • Terrible2%
Travellers talk about
Closed Now
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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"disappearing gun"
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"royal albatross centre"
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"amazing birds"
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"blue penguins"
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"unique tour"
in 15 reviews
"viewing area"
in 57 reviews
"penguin tour"
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"adult birds"
in 23 reviews
"birds flying"
in 32 reviews
"otago peninsula"
in 98 reviews
"eggs"
in 31 reviews
"taiaroa head"
in 35 reviews
"money goes"
in 15 reviews
"conservation work"
in 16 reviews
"the cliff"
in 29 reviews
"gift shop"
in 40 reviews
"sea birds"
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1 - 10 of 1,484 reviews

Reviewed 3 days ago

You don't necessarily need to pay to do a tour in order to see the birds. We were watching some sunbathing seals from one of the lookouts and a huge Albatross flew directly overhead. It circled back around a few times so it was a...More

Thank Louise N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 days ago

We simply couldn't part with with so much money after spending over 3 weeks seeing SO many great natural sights and sites in South Island that were either free, donation, or something like $10 each. We were lucky enough to watch the albatrosses soaring overhead...More

Thank anthony m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 4 days ago

Kia ora and thank you for your review. The 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 rare...More

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Reviewed 5 days ago

We a gang of 6 were on our way out from Dunedin to Te Anau. We reached THe Royal Albatross Centre by afternoon for Lunch. We were lucky to see one of them on flight. Albatrosses are highly efficient in the air, using dynamic soaring...More

Thank SojanIpe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 4 days 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

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Reviewed 6 days ago

This is my first time ever watching a real albatros. This bird is superb. I saw 4 babies and few adults flying from the distance. It was an unforgettable experience. The babies were so cute and adults were so big! The staff were helpful and...More

Thank minimize940314
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 4 days ago

Kia ora and thanks for taking the time to write a review. Thanks for supporting us by taking a tour. There is the chance for great viewing at the moment, with adult albatross returning to existing nesting sites to feed their young chicks – we...More

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

I really enjoyed our visit. The peninsular is spectacular overlooking the Dunedin Harbour entrance. Our guide was passionate and very interesting to listen too thank you. We observed 4 chicks but the adults were out for the day. Well worth it and the entry cost...More

Thank NakiGingham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 4 days 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

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Visit during Jan, still was very cold in the evening so come prepared. Tour and staff are great, wildlife is just awesome and really enjoyed the treat. Bit of a drive from Dunedin, but well worth it. Watch your speed on the roadMore

Thank Brett H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Kia ora and thanks for taking the time to write a review and give such great tips to visitors, it is a bit colder now as it's Winter! Thanks for supporting us by taking a tour. There is the chance for great viewing at the...More

Report response as inappropriate
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Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Great drive to get there and we equipped information centre which has free access including cafe but far too expensive guided tours for general public.More

Thank jeff l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Kia ora and thank you for your review. The cost of the tour contributes to the stewardship of the Albatross. It enables the Otago Peninsula Trust, which manages the Royal Albatross Centre to continue to offer albatross experiences to the public, to offer education programmes...More

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Reviewed 3 weeks ago

The drive to the Centre is worth the recommendation alone, breathtaking views winding your way across the vertiginous Peninsula heights. Great cause in respect of the protection of this breeding ground, the founder's commitment to these giant birds truly awe-inspiring. Joel was a wonderful guide,...More

Thank CoJonesUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Kia ora and thanks for taking the time to write such a lovely review, we'll be sure to pass your thanks on to Joel. Thanks for supporting us by taking a tour. There is the chance for great viewing at the moment, with adult albatross...More

Report response as inappropriate
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Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

The Royal Albatross Centre is located on the Otago Peninsula, Dunedin NZ. The centre is designed as a conservation place for educating the public on the different albatross species that live on the peninsula. There is a short steep walk up to the observation room...More

Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Kia ora and thanks for taking the time to write a review. Thanks for supporting us by taking a tour. There is the chance for great viewing at the moment, with adult albatross returning to existing nesting sites to feed their young chicks – we...More

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

We were fortunate enough to have Ian as a guide. He was amazing and clearly loves his job - Thank you Ian. This is a great experience snd must see in Dunedin. Take the hidden gun tour as well. Pretty cool.More

Thank SanjM07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OtagoPeninsulaTrust, Front Office Manager at The Royal Albatross Centre, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Kia ora and thanks for taking the time to write such a lovely review, we'll be sure and pass on your thanks to Ian! Thanks for supporting us by taking a tour. There is the chance for great viewing at the moment, with adult albatross...More

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
Linda20162016
20 June 2018|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from OtagoPeninsulaTrust | Property representative |
Kia ora, Thank you for your enquiry. As we are in our winter timetable our albatross tours run between 10.30am and 3pm with the Blue Penguin tour starting at 5.30pm. We do recommend booking as spaces are limited however... More
1
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2TSV2
3 March 2018|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from OtagoPeninsulaTrust | Property representative |
Kia ora Sue, The 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 rare and... More
0
Votes
Margaret L
25 January 2018|
AnswerShow all 6 answers
Response from OtagoPeninsulaTrust | Property representative |
Kia ora, Thank you for your enquiry. On our guided tours comfortable footwear is recommended. The pathway to our observatory takes most visitors 5-6mins to complete - although a bit steep in places - this pathway is fully... More
1
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