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Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
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Royal Albatross Centre

Get close to some of New Zealand’s rarest and most spectacular birds at Taiaroa Head.

Visit the Royal Albatross Centre, the world’s only mainland royal albatross breeding colony, and marvel at these giant birds as they soar above the wild Pacific Ocean. See penguins and sea lions on the beaches around the centre and check out Fort Taiaroa to find out why this location played such an important role in the nation’s history.

Located on a long green headland at the tip of the Otago Peninsula, the Royal Albatross Centre offers a truly unique wildlife experience. Watch from the indoor viewing area as great northern royal albatrosses circle the cliffs before returning to their nests just a few metres away. If you visit in the summer after the chicks have been born you may be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the adults teaching them to fly. To find out more about the birds’ behaviour, take a tour and enjoy a short film that documents the existence of the albatross in Otago.

During your trip be sure to explore Fort Taiaroa. Positioned right on the end of the headland, this underground fort was built on the site of a 14th-century Maori camp. As well as being a key defensive outpost during both world wars, this spot is where the Treaty of Waitangi was signed in 1840.

The coastline that surrounds the centre is a haven for an array of animals. The most popular resident is the little blue penguin. Join a guided tour of Pilot Beach and look for the furry birds as they waddle up the beach to their nests after a day of fishing. Spot the lazy sea lions that spend their days sunbathing on the warm sand.

The Royal Albatross Centre is a 40-minute drive northeast of Dunedin. The centre is open all day through the year. Book tours over the phone or through the centre’s website.


Guide to Exploring around Royal Albatross Centre


Best Lodging Options Near Royal Albatross Centre

See all 213 Properties near Royal Albatross Centre
Beachaven - Aramoana
Beachaven - Aramoana

Beachaven - Aramoana

78 Moana Street, Aramoana, Otago
     
    0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated on the beach, this historic holiday home is 0.6 mi (0.9 km) from Otago Peninsula and within 9 miles (15 km) of Port Chalmers Museum and Holy Trinity Church. Forsyth Barr Stadium and The Octagon are also within 16 miles (25 km).

    Coastal Holiday home [RIDGE VIEW COTTAGE]
    Coastal Holiday home [RIDGE VIEW COTTAGE]

    Coastal Holiday home [RIDGE VIEW COTTAGE]

    1 Ridge Street, Purakaunui
       
      0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated by the sea, this holiday home is 0.3 mi (0.5 km) from Purakaunui Inlet and 1.7 mi (2.7 km) from Long Beach. Doctors Point and Holy Trinity Church are also within 9 miles (15 km).

      Iconic Historic Seaside Cottage
      Iconic Historic Seaside Cottage

      Iconic Historic Seaside Cottage

      55 Bay RD, Purakaunui, Purakaunui, Otago
         
        0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in the heart of Purakaunui, this resort is within a 15-minute walk of Purakaunui Inlet and Long Beach. Doctors Point and Holy Trinity Church are also within 9 miles (15 km).

        Kaimata Retreat
        Kaimata Retreat

        Kaimata Retreat

        CACPE SAUNDERS ROAD, 297, Cape Saunders, Otago
           
          4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated in Cape Saunders, this luxury hotel is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Otago Peninsula and within 9 miles (15 km) of NZ Marine Studies Centre and Aquarium and The Fletcher House. Allans Beach and Otakou Marae are also within 9 miles (15 km).

          Birdsong Bach - Your Home Away From Home
          Birdsong Bach - Your Home Away From Home

          Birdsong Bach - Your Home Away From Home

          6 Albert Rd, Osborne, Otago
             
            0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated in Osborne, this holiday home is 0.1 mi (0.1 km) from Purakaunui Inlet and 1.4 mi (2.3 km) from Doctors Point. Long Beach and Holy Trinity Church are also within 9 miles (15 km).

            Portobello Boutique Motel
            Portobello Boutique Motel

            Portobello Boutique Motel

            10 Harington Point Rd, Dunedin, OTA
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated in Dunedin, this cottage is within 2 miles (3 km) of Otago Peninsula, NZ Marine Studies Centre and Aquarium and The Fletcher House. Larnach Castle is 2.9 mi (4.6 km) away.

              Lovely Cottage in Beautiful Portobello
              Lovely Cottage in Beautiful Portobello

              Lovely Cottage in Beautiful Portobello

              4 Allans Beach Rd, Portobello, Dunedin, Otago
                 
                0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                This family-friendly Dunedin holiday home is within 2 mi (3 km) of Otago Peninsula, NZ Marine Studies Centre and Aquarium and The Fletcher House. Larnach Castle is 2.9 mi (4.7 km) away.

                Prestige Apartments No 1. New one bed Apartment Fully Self Contained
                Prestige Apartments No 1. New one bed Apartment Fully Self Contained

                Prestige Apartments No 1. New one bed Apartment Fully Self Contained

                1724 Highcliff Rd, 1, Dunedin, Otago
                   
                  0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated in Dunedin, this apartment building is within 2 miles (3 km) of Otago Peninsula, NZ Marine Studies Centre and Aquarium and The Fletcher House. Larnach Castle is 2.8 mi (4.5 km) away.