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Having a Yabba-Dabba-Doo Time in TST East!

A Trip to the Science Museum.

sunny

The Aqua Luna.

The Aqua Luna.

I turned up at the Science Museum a few weeks ago and found I couldn't get in without an online booking due to the popularity of their dinosaur exhibition. Since then, I have tried several times to book a visit to this museum, but it has always been sold out. Well, the other night, I woke up at two in the morning and picked up my phone. I know it's fatal to do this, as once I have gone on my phone, it's very hard to get back to sleep. Anyway, it suddenly occurred to me, "I haven't tried to book the dinosaurs this week yet." I had a go and managed to secure a reservation. When I woke up the next morning, I had a vague memory and wondered if I had just been dreaming, then I saw the confirmation on my email. Thus it was that I found myself heading back to the Science Museum for midday on Friday.

The exhibition is called 'The Big Eight - Dinosaur Revelation' because it contains the skeletal remains of eight different dinosaurs. It describes these as 'eight of the most iconic creatures from the Golden Age of Dinosaurs.' The eight dinosaurs are: Tyrannosaurus Rex, triceratops, spinosaurus, allosaurus, hesperosaurus, diplodocus, hatzegopteryx and a baby sauropod.

In the words of the exhibition's blurb: 'This exhibition boasts an unrivalled amount of original fossil material, some of the most complete fossil skeletons in the world, world-class artwork, cutting-edge 3D renderings and the first scientifically accurate reconstructions of the world's largest predatory dinosaur and the world's largest flying creature'.

I arrived a bit early and stopped to take a picture of the nearby fountain, which was hosting quite a large gathering of pigeons.

Fountain, Tsim Sha Tsui.

Fountain, Tsim Sha Tsui.

Fountain, Tsim Sha Tsui.

Fountain, Tsim Sha Tsui.

Then I took another look at the displays outside the museum. These start with a model of dinosaur bones, away from which large dinosaur footprints lead to the museum's entrance.

'The Big Eight - Dinosaur Revelation' at the Science Museum, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong.

'The Big Eight - Dinosaur Revelation' at the Science Museum, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong.

The Big Eight - Dinosaur Revelation.

The Big Eight - Dinosaur Revelation.

Displays outside the museum.

Displays outside the museum.

Displays outside the museum.

Displays outside the museum.

Displays outside the museum.

Displays outside the museum.

Fossil hunters.

Fossil hunters.

Entry to the exhibition is free. Before I could get in, I had to scan my leave home safe app and my vaccination certificate. I decided to begin with the dinosaurs, then take a look around the rest of the museum later. I have been to the Science Museum several times, always accompanied by between sixty to ninety children during my primary school teaching days. It's a very child friendly museum with lots of hands on things to do. Our classes used to be able to run around, trying everything and having a great time here. Then we'd take them across to the History Museum, which is just next door, and the kids were not allowed to move or breath. The History Museum is one of the least child friendly museums I have ever encountered. I think you have to hate children to get a job there, which is a shame, because it is an interesting museum. Anyway, I no longer have to worry about such things. I no longer take my days out accompanied by large numbers of short, inquisitive, little human beings.

I started by taking a look at the diplodocus. This proved to be very hard to photograph, as it is huge and there isn't really a good place to stand and take the shot. At the side of the skeleton, there was an animation of several diplodocus, wandering around searching for food. Next to it there was an aeroplane which is part of the permanent exhibition here. Perhaps it was thought useful for size comparison.

Diplodocus means 'double beamed lizard'. At around 27 metres long, these gigantic plant-eating dinosaurs were the longest of all known dinosaurs. They weighed around 12 tonnes.

Diplodocus, easiest to photograph from the escalator.

Diplodocus, easiest to photograph from the escalator.

Diplodocus.

Diplodocus.

Next I had a look at hatzegopteryx, the world's largest flying creature. This was displayed as a skeleton attached to the wall, but every so often an animation was projected onto it, showing how its body would have looked and how it would have moved its wings.

Hatzegopteryx was one of the biggest pterosaurs, with a wingspan of ten to twelve metres. It was found in Transylvania - a sort of earlier and bigger version of Dracula's bat, perhaps.

Hatzegopteryx and fan club.

Hatzegopteryx and fan club.

Hatzegopteryx with animation.

Hatzegopteryx with animation.

Then I went to see triceratops, which means three horned face, a firm favourite with kids if I remember correctly. Triceratops had one of the largest heads of any land animal ever discovered. They may have had around eight hundred teeth. Quite a big bill at the dentist's for them then!

Triceratops.

Triceratops.

Triceratops.

Triceratops.

Close to the triceratops stood a mighty Tyrannosaurus rex, which means the tyrant lizard king. This is another dinosaur adored by little children, as they admire anything that can rip 100kg of flesh off their victims in a single bite. Still he has got a lovely smile!

T-rex.

T-rex.

T-Rex.

T-Rex.

T-rex and Triceratops getting ready for a fight. Who do you think will win?

T-rex and Triceratops getting ready for a fight. Who do you think will win?

I think the next one was my favourite of the exhibition, not sure why. Maybe it's because we both like swimming. It was the spectacular spinosaurus. This dinosaur has a two metre high sail on its back that it used to seduce the opposite sex, while scaring off predators and retaining its cool.

Spinosaurus.

Spinosaurus.

Spinosaurus.

Spinosaurus.

Five dinosaurs down. Before seeking out the remaining three, I took a look at the time tunnel. Basically this is a tunnel where facts and different dinosaur images are projected across the floor while coloured lights swirl all round you. Every time the dinosaurs appeared little kids would chase them or sit on them or in the case of the tiniest and funniest little girl there, stamp violently on them with all her might.

Time Tunnel.

Time Tunnel.

Time Tunnel.

Time Tunnel.

Through the time tunnel there was a video playing. In the video a T-rex appears at a meeting of the United Nations and starts telling everyone off about climate change and warning that we could be facing extinction if we don't do something about it. The video was pretty well done, I thought. Here it was also possible to write a message or draw a picture of the dinosaurs and put it on the Dino board. There were some fun dinosaur displays in front of the windows.

Dino message board.

Dino message board.

Dino message board.

Dino message board.

What do you say we smash this window and go take a stroll around town.

What do you say we smash this window and go take a stroll around town.

Watch out behind you! No, in front of you. Just run!

Watch out behind you! No, in front of you. Just run!

The next part of the museum had a display of dinosaur and other animal eggs arranged in order of size. Too popular and too reflective to get a good picture of, but interesting nonetheless.

Dinosaur eggs and other eggs.

Dinosaur eggs and other eggs.

Then the next dinosaur I encountered was Hesperosaurus, which means western lizard. It's called this because its remains were found in Montana and Wyoming in the USA. This dinosaur shares some similarities with the stegosaurus

Hesperosaurus.

Hesperosaurus.

Hesperosaurus.

Hesperosaurus.

Next to the hesperosaurus was the mighty allosaurus. Lucky for hesperosaurus that it isn't exactly the same as stegosaurus, as apparently that was allosaurus's favourite dinner. How do I know? Well, apparently paleontologists have uncovered an allosaurus vertebrae with a puncture wound matching the stegosaurus tail spike, and a stegosaurus neck bone with an allosaurus shaped bite mark. Case closed.

Allosaurus.

Allosaurus.

Allosaurus.

Allosaurus.

Allosaurus claw.

Allosaurus claw.

The final dinosaur was just a little baby and he was exhibited in a very reflective glass case that always had lots of people all around it, so not easy to photograph. He was a sauropod. Apparently, his name was Toni! Toni is displayed in his original burial posture, he is the only articulated, nearly complete baby sauropod ever found.

Toni, the baby sauropod.

Toni, the baby sauropod.

Toni the baby sauropod model.

Toni the baby sauropod model.

One of the things I really enjoyed on this visit was looking at the winning entries from an art competition set by the Science Museum and the MTR. The competition was open to all primary and secondary schools in Hong Kong. The children were to create artwork about dinosaurs and the MTR. The competition had both a painting and a digital graphics section. I thought the standard was very impressive.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Dinosaur and MTR Competition.

Well that was me done with the big eight, but I had a quick look round the rest of the museum before leaving.

There was a section on natural disasters. In this, it was possible to see the inner workings of a volcano, create your own tsunami and enter a glass booth to experience a typhoon.

Making a tsunami.

Making a tsunami.

Inside a volcano.

Inside a volcano.

I liked the displays connected to nature. These included a fish tank filled with several different kinds of coral and colourful tropical fish. There were some Hong Kong animals on display, though I feel they could have done with more. Where were the wild boar, the monkeys, the barking deer and the leopard cats? There were also lots of displays about insects, which I rather liked.

Coral reef.

Coral reef.

Coral reef.

Coral reef.

Local wildlife. Civet cat. SARS jumped from bats to humans via this little fellow, it is believed.

Local wildlife. Civet cat. SARS jumped from bats to humans via this little fellow, it is believed.

Local wildlife porcupine. Apparently they are quite common, though I have yet to see one.

Local wildlife porcupine. Apparently they are quite common, though I have yet to see one.

Turtle laying eggs.

Turtle laying eggs.

Butterflies.

Butterflies.

Butterflies.

Butterflies.

Bees.

Bees.

Beetles.

Beetles.

Dragonflies

Dragonflies

Insect viewed through a microscope.

Insect viewed through a microscope.

Sadly, I had a look in the Hall of Mirrors before leaving, always a mistake.

This is me looking elegantly tall and slim.

This is me looking elegantly tall and slim.

But sadly the next mirror was more accurate.

But sadly the next mirror was more accurate.

At first I was originally planning just to head home after my visit to the museum, but then I remembered there was a lantern display somewhere near the clock tower, so I took a longer route along the Avenue of Stars to see it. I was glad I went that way, as I was in time to see the beautiful Aqua Luna Junk passing by.

Passing junk.

Passing junk.

Passing junk.

Passing junk.

I recently photographed most of the statues on the Avenue of Stars, but I took some of the Hong Kong film awards statue this time. Again the Avenue of Stars did not have a single tourist in sight. The government here has finally scrapped quarantine, so I wonder if that will change. Quarantine for inbound travellers ends on Monday, though people entering need to do a RATS test every day and a couple of PCR tests and they are not allowed in restaurants!!! Not perfect, but I guess it's a move in the right direction. Naturally, I could not resist photographing the occasional flower on route.

Purple flowers.

Purple flowers.

Bright red hibiscus..

Bright red hibiscus..

The Hong Kong Film Awards Statue.

The Hong Kong Film Awards Statue.

I noticed the Space Museum has added a dinosaur to its dome. It also has some kind of dinosaur related exhibition on at the moment.

The dome of the Space Museum.

The dome of the Space Museum.

The lantern display was entitled 'Hugs Without Distance,' obviously looking forward to a COVID free world.. They were prettily arranged in the pond by the clock tower. I took a picture of the nearby Flying Frenchman statue, too.

The Flying Frenchman and the clock tower.

The Flying Frenchman and the clock tower.

Hugs without distance.

Hugs without distance.

Hugs without distance.

Hugs without distance.

Hugs without distance.

Hugs without distance.

On my way to the MTR, I stopped to take some photos of 'Lining up' by Ju Ming, which I think is quite cute.

Lining up by Ju Ming.

Lining up by Ju Ming.

Lining up by Ju Ming.

Lining up by Ju Ming.

Then I finally set off home.

Posted by irenevt 07:28 Archived in Hong Kong

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Comments

Hi, Irene! Thanks for your interesting and well-illustrated story! You took me for a nice tour of special places, thanks! Keep well!~

by Vic_IV

Glad you enjoyed it, Victor.

by irenevt

Is a baby sauropod called a sauropod puppy? It was cute, as are all babies.

Looks like a fascinating museum. They just opened a new Museum of Science and Curiosity here in Sacramento and we have yet to visit. You have inspired me. Perhaps I can persuade my husband out of the house.

by Beausoleil

Hi Sally, as far as I know, all baby reptiles are known as hatchlings. If you can persuade your husband, you should give your Science Museum a go. They are pretty hands on and fun. Well, I assume most of them are. I think I have only been to the one in Hong Kong.

by irenevt

I like puppies better . . . if I can convince the scientists.

My Dad used to live in Chicago and when I was sent for my "time" with him, he used to take me to the Museum of Science and Industry and it was wonderful. I loved it. The new one here is a recycled civic building of some sort, possibly an old power plant. It's been sitting empty for years and they finally finished it during the pandemic when no one could visit. We'll have to check it out. Thanks for the inspiration!

by Beausoleil

Hope you enjoy your day out there. I love to see old buildings being restored and used for something rather than just left empty.

by irenevt

I can see why this exhibition would be popular. The dinosaur section of the Natural History Museum here is always packed out with kids! I've never heard of a Spinosaurus and it does look rather cool :)

I don't think you'll see tourists return while they're still not allowed in restaurants and have to test every day. Certainly I wouldn't choose to visit a country with such restrictions when many others have dropped all of them for visitors with proof of vaccination. I hope you reach a point of 'hugs without distance' soon!

by ToonSarah

Hi Sarah, I fully agree. We have not restarted travelling yet. First of all, we did not want to have to do the quarantine. Now we are thinking we may as well wait till all restrictions have been removed. We can't be bothered with constant tests. If I was still working I'd have to Rats test myself every day. It's not so easy for Peter to travel anymore anyway.

by irenevt

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