Hacking Discovery Place Science with Kids

Discovery Place Science is one of Charlotte’s hottest kids spots.  It comes highly recommended by those just passing through the QC as well as by permanent residents.  However, there is much to do and see, and since you will be with your children, planning ahead makes your visit much more enjoyable for all of you.

Join us as we give you an insider look on how to hack Discovery Place Science.



Monday- Friday: 9am- 4pm
Saturday:  9am- 5pm
Sunday: 12pm-5pm

When to Go:


Scoop Hack: After lunch, DPS tends to wind down making it an awesome time to get things in without the crowds.  During the school year don’t forget about the Field Trips, as particularly Fridays tend to be hectic days due to school trips.

Scoop Hack: Consider going Monday-Wednesday mid to late afternoon for lowest crowds.


Where to Park:

The “official” DPS parking deck located at the corner of Church and 6th.  Use the over street walkway on level P3 to enter DPS on the 3rd floor.

Parking Rates:

The first hour is free, but after that, the fee is $12:00 all day. However, we have Scoop Hack for you.

Scoop Hack: Discounted parking with membership.  If you join Discovery Place Science, your parking will be discounted to $8 per visit.


Scoop Hack: Take the light rail in, kids love this experience.  There are many places to catch the light rail check here for pick up stations.

From the light rail get off on 7th Street station stop on the LYNX Light Rail system.  Head west toward Tyron St.  DPS is located on Tryon St. between 6th and 7th Streets.


Where to Eat:

Scoop Hack: DPS has the cutest outdoor and fenced in a picnic area located just outside the second-floor entrance. Perfect for getting street views of Charlotte and getting some fun outdoor time.  The enclosure allows kids to run around and play after lunch while parents can take in the sights and enjoy a little more time to savor their food.



First Floor:

Take the elevator down to the first floor after you start, this is a great place to start. Here you will find undersea adventures, rainforest, and the IMAX theatre.  The Sea Life area is a huge hit with an octopus, jellyfish, sea horses, turtles, and much more. Go back in time to explore bones, fossils, and animals of the past.  Downstairs there is also a small younger kids area.  Design your own cars, make music, and explore air pressure.  There is also water play area- so remember to bring a change of clothes.


IMAX and Shows:

Shows are a great way to change the pace of your visit and add in a little downtime.  DPS offers IMAX movies to staff led demonstrations. IMAX shows are not included with membership (Scoop Hack: they are cheaper as a member), but there are many staff led shows that are open to all once you are inside.  Upon check-in, you can find a list of show times.

Make sure to check here for IMAX and special show times.

Second Floor:

This is the most popular floor, rightfully so, this is the ultimate in brain stimulation.  Explore the world of virtual reality or lay on a bed of nails. Does the human body pique your child’s interest? Then check out their bones lab area.  Engineering, build, and design. Explore science explicitly and tangibly with all the exhibits DPS has to offer.


Tyrannosaurs: Dinosaur Exhibition:

From May 26- September 3 meet a Trynnosaurs Rex first hand.  This event features 10 (yep, TEN) life-sized dinosaur specimens. Your children will love getting up close and personal with the dino world.  The exhibit is more than just a display of dinosaurs.  Enjoy the interactive areas where you can test your strength against that of a T-rex, dig for your own fossils, and explore the enormous span of time between that of the dinosaurs and humans.




Adults: $17. Children: (2-13) $13. Seniors: $15. Members: FREE


Adults: $10. Children (2-13): $9. Seniors: $9 Members: $5

Bundled (Museum + IMAX):

Adults: $22. Children (2-13): $18. Seniors: $20 Members: $5


Membership has its benefits- including discounts on parties, museum store, entrance for guest, and discounted parking.

Membership allows for TWO adults and kids entry.

Scoop Hack: Meaning that it doesn’t matter if your husband is going with you, your best friend, or your Mom- ONE person gets in free on your membership.


Scoop Hack: Multiple museum memberships allow you to get free or discounted to 250 ASTC Science Centers all over the country.  Some of these are as close as Raleigh, what another fun adventure to hop in the car and head to Marbles for the day.  Or maybe while you are on vacation hop into a museum for some fun.


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Ashley W
Ashley is a freelance writer and mom extraordinaire.  She lives in the LKN area with her husband and two children.  \