Virginia’s Jurassic Park

Just off of Route 81, in White Post, Virginia, sits Virginia’s very own Jurassic Park. Dinosaurs are the main attraction and visitors are warned not to get too close to the giant reptiles. Tourists pay a small fee to enter the park and go back in time to when dinosaurs ruled the earth. So basically, Dinosaur Land is a much smaller, much lower budget, version of Jurassic Park.

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Dinosaur Land is home to over 40 fiberglass Dinosaur replicas. Dinosaur Land is also over 50 years old and is well loved by the local children. This is the ultimate offbeat roadside attraction. Dinosaur Land has the large, tacky sign out front beckoning at travelers to stop and visit. The sign is falling apart and the dinosaurs out front offer drivers a preview of the attraction despite desperately needing a new coat of paint.

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If you were to somehow miss the first landmark sign, the front of the gift shop/ticket office features a large dinosaur head complete with a window for photo ops.

 

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The inside of the small building is confusing. A sign outside calls it a fireworks shop, but inside there is a mix of dinosaur souvenirs and memorabilia, toys, small trinkets, and candy. The staff was friendly and helpful and to my surprise there were several other visitors there, even though I arrived just before the cut off time for admission to the park.

Also to my surprise, there were not just families with small children visiting. A young couple took pictures with the giant King Kong statue, two friends in their 30’s laughed at the descriptions in front of each animal. With a coupon I found at a nearby restaurant, I scored a dollar off admission to bring the price of admission to Dinosaur Land to $5.

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$5 for admission is really nothing when you consider all of the varieties of Dinosaurs you are paying to see, not to mention a 20′ King Kong, a 60′ shark, and a 90’s octopus. As you can tell from the pictures below, all of the features were prominently shown in signs on the gift shop to further entice visitors to buy a ticket.

The sign out front had seen better days and was obscured by a giant shark lying in front of it. Despite this, I still appreciated the resemblance to classic Disneyland logo with the old fashion lettering.

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There were numerous opportunities for photos throughout Dinosaur Land. The giant King Kong statue even featured an outstretched hand for visitors to perch in while another person took a photo from below.

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I think I expected more out of Dinosaur Land for $5. Still, I enjoyed visiting one of Virginia’s oldest roadside attractions.


The verdict: If you are in the area, Dinosaur Land is a fun stop. Take a break from driving and stop to stretch your legs and see a classic Virginia roadside attraction at the same time. Unless you have a thing for giant fiberglass dinosaurs, it’s probably not worth a trip by itself, but if you can look past the peeling paint and the strangeness of it all (and I suggest that you do), Dinosaur Land is a fun stop.

Dinosaur Land, http://dinosaurland.com/, (540) 869-2222

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