Pterosaur: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs, a must-do family activity

Published on August 1 2019 - Sponsored

Discover the exhibition Pterosaur: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs at the Canadian Museum of Nature. There’s fun for the whole family, with interactive games, costumes and giant puzzles. You can even try a unique virtual reality experience!

An interactive exhibition for the whole family

This exhibition (a Canadian premiere!) at the Canadian Museum of Nature presents the first vertebrates to fly under their own power. You can discover them from several angles and in several ways!

For example, Alizée, my 4-year-old daughter, loved her first experience with an interactive game and did very well! She soared, turned, and swooped down for fish. She enjoyed pursuing insects in flight … even though she left with an empty stomach. 😉

Mélik, my 2-year-old son, loved pressing the buttons of the many movies, working the giant puzzles, playing with the touch screens, dressing up as a pterosaur … For kids who crave a hands-on experience, this is the place!

Mom loved the nesting area (a corner for tiny tots), with its stuffed animals, books, costumes and soft carpeting. An ideal space for toddlers who also want to explore in their own way.

Canadian Museum of Nature
Canadian Museum of Nature

On your next visit to the Canadian Museum of Nature, take the opportunity to “pilot” a pterosaur over a prehistoric landscape using your entire body.

An outstanding virtual reality experience

Dad absolutely adored the virtual reality experience. I can’t help quoting him here (he was just so excited): “It’s a whole other level of virtual reality. You control the bird with your entire body; the platform you’re lying on moves along with you. You’re free to mingle among other pterosaurs. Wind and vibration add to the experience. There are only two other machines like this in Canada—it’s called Birdy. It’s absolutely nothing like other virtual realities!”

What more can I say? The $9 charge for this activity is a good investment for a 2½-minute bird’s-eye view of the Jurassic era.

It’s truly a family activity for all ages.

Canadian Museum of Nature
Canadian Museum of Nature

The exhibition Pterosaur: Flight in the Age of Dinosaurs is also appropriate for toddlers. Enjoy the nesting area with your younger ones.

Dinosaur hunter: a childhood dream

What child hasn’t dreamed of becoming a paleontologist?

Jordan Mallon, PhD, is a paleobiology researcher at the Canadian Museum of Nature. His research focuses on the factors that influenced the diversity of dinosaurs until the massive extinction of the late Cretaceous. As a child, he dreamed of being a paleontologist—or a hockey player. “I knew after watching Jurassic Park, but especially after I found my first fossil of a crinoid, a marine animal that looks like a plant with a skeleton.”

Paleontology is a very competitive field, and for an Ontarian, finding a job in one’s home region is a long shot. “I was lucky,” says Mr. Mallon. “I was in the right place at the right time. You have no control over opportunities, but when they arise, it’s up to you to take advantage of them.”

Image caption: Did you know that pterosaurs are not dinosaurs? These winged reptiles ruled the skies for 150 million years.

Canadian Museum of Nature
Canadian Museum of Nature

Try an incomparable virtual reality experience! Here, you use your entire body to control the pterosaur.



Canadian Museum of Nature – 240 McLeod Street, Ottawa


Until September 2, 2019


Note: Each ticket to Pterosaur also requires a general-admission ticket to the Museum (except Thursdays after 5 p.m.).

  • Adult: $10
  • Senior (age 65+): $7
  • Student (age 18+) : $7
  • Student (age 13+): $7
  • Child (age 3–12): $7
  • Tiny Tot (age 0–2): Free
  • Virtual reality experience: $9 (minimum height 48 inches/122 cm)

Good to know

Download the free companion iPad app from the Apple Store to learn more about pterosaurs.

Canadian Museum of Nature
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