At the base of an active volcano, nestled in thick jungle and alongside a cascading waterfall, is Dino Land. Here, you will hear the roars and trumpets of all your favorite dinosaurs. As you walk, you’ll see life-sized mechanical replicas of them. These realistic recreations are sure to get smiles from the kids and adults alike. In this post, we’ll tell you more about Dino Land Costa Rica and how to plan a visit.
Dino Land is located in the village of Bajos del Toro, Costa Rica. This quaint town sits at the northern base of Poas Volcano. Poas has one of the largest active craters in the world. From town, the volcano looms in the distance.
Bajos de Toro is an off-the-beaten path destination with only a few small hotels, some vacation rentals, and a handful of restaurants.
Most of the town’s tourist activity is from weekend locals traveling the roughly two hours from San Jose and the Central Valley.
But with a plethora of beautiful waterfalls and unique dinosaur park, that is sure to change.
Dino Land is also about 1 hour and 45 minutes east of the popular destination of La Fortuna, where Arenal Volcano is located.
About Dino Land
Dino Land is a newer attraction at a property already popular (mostly with locals).
The property is best known for a gorgeous waterfall called the Rio Agrio. The Rio Agrio is an attraction in and of itself, but for those interested in checking out the dinos, your entrance tickets can be purchased as a combo with Dino Land, the waterfall, and some blue swimming holes.
The Dinosaurs at Dino Land
The Dino Land property has 25 dinosaur statues, 22 of which are mechanical. They make small movements, roars, and other lifelike sounds.
All the dinosaur statues are spaced out in an open garden along a short trail with a nice gravel path. There are some steeper parts toward the end but nothing too strenuous. If walking slow, it will take about 30-45 minutes to wander through the prehistoric exhibit.
What’s great about Dino Land is the environment. This region of Costa Rica has very thick, lush jungle, reminiscent of Jurassic Park.
We were visiting Dino Land with our two boys, ages six and three, so it was perfect for them. Since they have been playing with dinosaur toys and reading books about them for years, it was no surprise that they were familiar with almost all the ones we saw.
Here were some of the favorites.
Hatching Dino Eggs and “Toothless” the Dragon
Not far into the Dino Land exhibit is a covered area with some bathrooms. Right next to those are large dinosaur eggs with mechanical T. Rex hatchlings that pop up and down from their eggshells. There’s also an eggshell that the kids can go in for a picture.
In this same spot, our kids also really enjoyed the mechanical dragon Toothless from the show/movie, How to Train your Dragon.
Toothless has a saddle on its back and once mounted, an employee will activate a sort of mechanical bull mechanism to make him bounce around and make noises.
Sitting center stage in the main garden is a giant Brachiosaurus. It towers over the area and must be 40 feet (12 meters) tall! The Brachiosaurus moves its long neck and occasionally bellows out a trumpeting call.
This is one of the scenes where, with the lush mountain backdrop, you really feel like you’ve gone back in time.
Another giant highlight was Carnotaurus, which sort of looks like a big T. Rex. This dinosaur statue is in a lunging forward position with its mouth wide open to make it extra scary.
There is also a flat concrete pad in front of it. We had fun taking some pictures here that made it look like the big meat-eater was chasing the kids.
A smaller dinosaur but hard to miss, Dilophosaurus was a fun one to encounter on the trail. This is the dinosaur that was modified in the Jurassic Park movie to spit poison. It has umbrella-like flaps on both sides of its head, which make it intimidating.
This one’s movements really made it seem more realistic.
Of course, no visit to a dinosaur park would be complete without seeing the king, Tyrannosaurus Rex. Along the path, you may actually hear T. Rex before you see him.
The path winds its way down a hill to the river’s edge and, as you approach, you’ll start to notice some loud roars.
T. Rex is actually one of the last dinosaurs you will see on the trail before walking a bit uphill to the exit or continuing on to the waterfall.
Rio Agrio Waterfall
After the dinosaurs, the trail splits. If you have a bracelet for the combo tour, an employee will show you how to continue to the Rio Agrio Waterfall. This trail is about 400 meters (437 yards) each way. It winds through the jungle, along the river and into a canyon where the spectacular waterfall awaits.
We’ll be sharing a post about the Rio Agrio Waterfall soon, so be sure to check back.
After returning on that same waterfall trail that you came in on, there is another trail that climbs higher to a viewpoint.
At the top, they have set up some colorful wings that you can stand in front of for a photo op. This hike is steeper, but the path is in good condition.
After the lookout, you’ll return the same way and walk past the entrance of the dinosaur garden to get back to the parking lot.
There is also a restaurant, which serves good traditional Costa Rican food. Our kids loved that their food came in a cute dinosaur basket.
Planning Your Visit to Dino Land
Dino Land is open daily, 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The last entrance is at 3:00 p.m.
Option 1: Adults – 8,000 colones (about $12). Children (ages 4-10) – 5,000 colones (about $7.50). Children under 4 are free.
Includes: Admission to Dino Land, Rio Agrio Waterfall, and Mirador.
Option 2: Adults – 10,000 colones (about $15). Children (ages 4-10) – 8,000 colones (about $15). Children under 4 are free.
Includes: Admission to Dino Land, Rio Agrio Waterfall, Mirador, and blue pools.
Dino Land has a large parking lot, which is free.
During the week, you do not normally need a reservation, but it is a good idea to ensure they have space, especially if driving a long distance. On weekends and holidays, it gets busier so it is better to make reservations ahead of time.
You can contact Dino Land via WhatsApp at +506-8887-0310 or email at cataratarioagrio(at)gmail(dot)com
Dino Land, the waterfall, and lookout have trails that are uneven, rocky, and, at times, slippery. Though the beginning of the dinosaur exhibit is fairly flat, it has loose gravel. Overall, this property is not ideal for those with limited mobility.
What to Wear/Bring
The first part of the trail is very open so make sure to pack a hat and some sunscreen.
The trail to the waterfall is more forested and shadier. You may want insect repellent. Sturdy sneakers or light hiking boots are recommended.
It often rains in Bajos del Toro, so pack an umbrella or raincoat.
You’ll want to bring a water bottle and snack since there is nothing along the trail.
Costa Rica is the perfect setting for dinosaurs, and the lush mountain and volcano backdrop in Bajos del Toro makes it all that much more special. Our family had a great time visiting Dino Land Costa Rica. If you have kids or are a kid at heart, we know you will too.
Have a question about visiting Dino Land or have you been? Leave us a comment below.
Looking for more information to help with your trip planning? Check out these articles.
Driving in Costa Rica: What to Know Before You Go – A place like Dino Land is best accessed with a rental car since it is off the tourist trail. Check out this post for what to expect when driving in Costa Rica.
Packing for Costa Rica: The Essentials – This post has advice on packing for different climates. Bajos del Toro is similar to the cloud forest and can be cooler and rainy (especially at night). Read this post for some essential gear recommendations to keep you comfortable.
The Truth About Visiting Poas Volcano – If you are exploring the Poas Volcano region and want to see one of the largest active craters in the world, read this post first so you know what to expect.