Aurora Fossil Museum, Aurora

Aurora Fossil Museum is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit natural science museum that educates on the geology, paleontology, and prehistory of the Aurora, NC area. The museum was founded in 1976 and opened in 1978 as a collaboration between the town of Aurora, local mines, East Carolina University, and other interested parties. The museum's collection is built around fossils recovered from the nearby phosphate mine, but also includes fossil, rock, and mineral displays from around the world. Fossils from the local mine are approximately 23 to 2.5 million years old and are from the early Miocene and Pliocene eras of the Pungo River and Yorktown formations. The museum also maintains two fossil pits in the Fossil Park located directly across the street from the main museum and visitors are allowed to collect fossils and keep what they find as a memento of their visit to Aurora, NC. The pits are open from dawn to dusk daily and are filled with mine tailings where small shell, coral, shark tooth, and other fossils are relatively easy to find. Major events hosted by the museum include the Annual Fossil Festival held on Memorial Day Weekend and the National Fossil Day Celebration in October. Plan a Aurora trip in moments using our itinerary builder.
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Aurora Fossil Museum Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
91 reviews
  • What a hidden gem. The museum is very informative, helping us to understand our significance and insignificance all at the same time. we spent a good bit of time taking in all the sights, then spent a...  more »
  • Great time here. Got about 150 teeth here in 2 hours. Tip- if sunny and hot bring a beach umbrella or other covering and work under it in the pit. Scout troop was there while we were, great learning e...  more »
  • Loved taking my grandchildren here. It was fun for them and they had plenty of shades areas to sit in for the adults. They also had picnic tables if you wanted to bring your lunch. One of the areas where you can dig is also shaded. They have a learning center and a museum. A really nice place to spend part of a day.
  • This place is wonderful! It's for the young and the young at heart! If you ever get the chance to go, well go to spend the day. If you plan ahead you can take the ferry over and take it home in the afternoon. While you're at it pack a picnic lunch because they have a covered area for just such lunches. Make sure to pick up an identification guide in the museum before you dig so you'll know what treasures you dig up.
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