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Address: 1260 Harington Point Rd | Otago Peninsula, Dunedin, New Zealand
Phone Number:
+64 3-478 0499
10:15 - 20:30
Closed now
See all hours
Sun - Sat 10:15 - 20:30
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours

The only chance to see... the world's only mainland Royal Albatross...

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.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,237 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 608
  • 299
    Very good
  • 131
  • 54
  • 34
Unique experience

Very well organised informative and special experience watching the fabulous majestic birds caring for their chicks.

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 1 week ago
Christine S
Bournemouth, United Kingdom
via mobile
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1,237 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 1,126: English reviews
Rotorua, New Zealand
Level Contributor
100 reviews
48 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

I really enjoyed the opportunity to see the majestic Royal Albatross close up. Our guide was interesting and allowed everyone time to take photos.

Thank HinemoaHoney
Dunedin, New Zealand
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

Great place to visit if you are into preserving nature and wildlife. Relatively easy access for the elderly, although some paths are relatively steep.

Thank palmerntjs
Bell Buckle, Tennessee
Level Contributor
187 reviews
79 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

We did the evening blue penguin tour and spent an hour before the tour touring the museum area. It is well done. The employees were very friendly and helpful. We did not see a huge number of penguins, but they warned us about that before saying the fog has them mixed up. We did see many penguins returning to their... More 

Thank Lasseter4242
Colleyville, Texas
Level Contributor
451 reviews
139 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 292 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

We toured the Center as part of our shore excursion from our cruise ship. When we visited, there were 7-8 birds nesting and we saw several flying around. The tour goes thru a former military bunker and you get a close-up view of these birds. Very unique experience.

Thank Steveh3Texas
Bournemouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW via mobile

Very well organised informative and special experience watching the fabulous majestic birds caring for their chicks.

Thank Christine S
Christchurch, New Zealand
Level Contributor
61 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW via mobile

We took the long winding drive only for sea fog to engulf the attraction and 90% of the peninsula. Nobodies fault by any means but pick your day carefully perhaps make a call ahead. Even with zero visibility there was a 2.5 hour wait for a tour of the birds so this is a busy spot.

Thank shouldhavebeenanAB
Arlington, Virginia
Level Contributor
115 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

The facility is well maintained - the tour guides are awesome. They were super informative. We were able to see some baby chicks which had recently hatched. Really worthwhile.

Thank Kauaidudette
Level Contributor
44 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Well for the 29th Dec it was only 9C so we were a bit cold. We chose to do our own thing at the Albatross Centre as it was very windy and cold and the shortest tour was over an hour. A great place as this is the only place you can see these huge birds on land.

Thank Judy W
Level Contributor
37 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

We did both an albatross tour and a blue penguin tour. The guides were knowlegeable, helping us to understand what we were seeing.These tours were among the highlights of our stay in New Zealand.

Thank RWMIndianapolis
Burton upon Trent, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
175 reviews
78 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

From the cliff edge viewing platforms you can view the albatrosses as they fly in from the sea, gaining height to reach their nesting sites on the clifftop. There is no charge to use this facility. The visitor centre is full of information regarding the albatross and you can purchase a tour with a guide to see these magnificent birds... More 

Thank Glyn F

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