Terrifying sight appears in the Hunter Valley

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After a few wines in the Hunter Valley you might expect to see things in a different light — but an altogether horrifying mirage has appeared in the famous grape-growing region over the weekend.

An ominously-titled exhibit called Mega Creatures has seen massive animated dinosaurs, dragons and insects appear in the Hunter Valley Gardens.

Walking towards the manicured gardens in the heart of the region you could spot two giant T-Rexes towering beside a sizable pond near the entrance.

With my four-year-old in tow, we were excited to see the seemingly motionless statues up close.

However, as we approached for a closer look, we were shocked when the figures came to life. They unleashed fearsome roars and moved with unnerving precision.

Parents of easily frightened kids be warned, there were some younger children appearing to be genuinely terrified of the beasts on display.

Even this 34-year-old reporter was left unsettled by the shrill buzzing of the giant wasps and bees, which flapped their wings in a menacing manner as you stepped in for a closer look.

It was a pretty impressive collection of models that had the kids in a trance, but there was lots for adults to admire too.

I had never been to the gardens, but they were an impressive sight by themselves. At the foot of the rolling hills of the valley, the perfectly manicured hedges and cascading waterfalls are like an oasis in the sun-soaked bush of the wine region.

It’s also home to a host of fairground rides, a tent with pretend bone excavating and food stalls.

It created a bizarre juxtaposition of kids riding on teacups and screaming at dinosaurs, with those admiring the landscaping — but it was a blast for the whole family.

If you are feeling particularly brave you can also check out the display at night in the form of a night safari — where the mega creatures are lit up.

The Mega Creatures exhibit runs until May 5 and tickets start from $40.

For more information, visit the Hunter Valley Gardens website.