The Bryce Wildlife Adventure Museum, or Museum of the Paunsaugant, is one man’s dream. This museum opened 10 years ago and lies just west of Bryce City on Highway 12.
The museum curator has been collecting animals for about 50 years. You will find just about every animal you can imagine, and many that you cannot imagine stuffed inside of this museum. There are so many animals that I actually turned to my wife and said, “This place is like Cabela’s on steroids!” (Note: If you don’t like animals in taxidermy form, you’ll obviously want to avoid this museum).
There are two levels to the museum. The ground floor contains a gift shop, an African safari room, and a huge open room with close to 20 separate displays representing different scenes. Each scene has 10+ animals. There are really a lot of animals in this museum! Our 3 year-old loved the alligator and returned several times to look at it. Some of our other favorites were the manta ray and the mountain lions.
The upper level is more like a mezzanine that walks all around the lower room. There are displays along the wall, and over 1600 butterflies are mounted on the walls. We loved looking at the iridescent blue and green ones.
After you finish your museum visit, you can buy a bag of corn for $2 and feed the animals outside. There are fallow deer that eat right out of your hand. We also fed chickens out of our hands, which our boys found scary at first, but really fun when they realized the chickens were after corn and not fingers.
We enjoyed the Bryce Museum though it was a little pricey ($26 for the 5 of us). It is a nice change of pace from the hikes, heat, and crowds in the national park. The Bryce Wildlife Adventure Museum also rents ATVs and bicycles if you are looking for that type of adventure.