Aurora Fossil Museum, Aurora

#28 of 87 in Museums in North Carolina Coast
Must see · Specialty Museum · Museum
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
94 reviews
  • This is an awesome day activity for the family. I don't think there are actually any gas stations or restaurants within about 15 miles of this place (we packed a picnic). My kids found hundreds of...  more »
  • Great finds! Terrific fellowship with other hunters! Highly recommended! Helpful staff, lots of parking! Cool exhibits, kid and pet friendly! Don’t take a large screen or metal shovel! Neither are...  more »
  • The staff was so friendly and knowledgeable. The museum was small but mighty, so much interesting stuff to see! We really enjoyed digging in the piles. My kids were super excited to leave with a bunch of sharks teeth.
  • 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.

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