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Tips for Visiting Legoland California

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Nearly everyone plays with Legos, from adults to kids, so a visit to Legoland California will be an adventure that you and your children will really enjoy. Here you and your family will see giant Lego sculptures and enjoy various rides and attractions. A wonderful place to visit with children, Legoland provides a variety of rides, interactive family fun, exciting shows and terrific miniatures. But before you start packing, take some time to read the following guidelines for visiting this wonderful amusement park.

1. Decide when to go

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Summer is the peak season in Legoland and the park can be extremely busy, especially on the weekends. The midweek (Tuesday – Thursday) tend to be less crowded. If you are planning a trip to Legoland in June, don’t forget to fetch a sweater with you because of the notorious Carlsbad “June gloom”. Some days there is no fog at all, but in general, the fog starts burning off by 9 a.m. late summer and into so fall, so July and August are the best bets if you want to enjoy the summer sun.

During the off-season (from September to May), the park is closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p. m. other days. Moreover, some attractions can be closed. But the park may be open all days a week as well as longer hours during holiday breaks and other special events, so make sure to check the calendar on the Website. Off-season weekends except school vacations are great times to visit Legoland; however some attractions, especially the water attractions, can be closed. In fact, during the off-season Sundays are the least crowded days. Weekdays off-season are also good times to hit the park.

2. Legoland during the holidays

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Always a wonderful place to visit, during the holidays and special events Legoland really shines. The fall and winter holidays add more fun and excitement to the Lego World. Around Halloween kids can enjoy trick or treating, Lego bricks and other treats at gaily decorated booths from costumed crew members. Plus there are costume contests and scavenger hunts.

Christmas at Legoland offers tremendous photo opportunities, as the whole park is decorated with elaborate Lego holiday decorations. During Christmas time Miniland where most of the U.S. cities are represented is filled with miniature holiday decorations and festive carolers. Really great sights are the beautifully decorated streets of New Orleans and Rockefeller Center in New York. On the New Year’s Eve the park features a kid’s concert and 6 p.m. ball drop tribute to Time Square.

3. Special Events

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Legoland features the following special events:

Junior Master Builder Competition occurs on the first full weekend of every month; the participants should build a Lego model based on the theme of the month using the bricks and the base plate provided.

Star Wars Day takes place every fall and features costume and builder contests as well as elaborate models constructed by adult fans on display.

The Model Moms Club provides fun activities for kids of 4 years old and under and their families; activities include stroller exercise walks, tumbling, crafts, preschool music and story time.

4. Get the tickets in advance

Buy tickets beforehand to avoid a long line in front of the ticket booth and save a lot of time for entertainment itself. In order to save the most and get the best price on airline tickets and hotel rooms, purchase a travel package from one of the major online travel agencies, such as Orbitz, Travelocity and Expedia.

5. Where to stay

Choose a hotel located close to Legoland so that you could spend more time having fun in the park. In Carlsbad, Sheraton Carlsbad Resort and Spa is one of the two official resorts of Legoland. Keep in mind that Legoland resort pass holders get special perks at this resort including complimentary parking and spa and dining discounts. Minutes to Legoland is Holiday Inn, Carlsbad by the Seat known for its world-class service and a wide range of amenities offered. Also not far from the park is Best Western Beach View Lodge, with its peaceful and uncluttered atmosphere.

6. What to bring

Pack a swimsuit and a light towel as there are a number of water-play zones throughout Legoland, including an extensive water playground in the Pirate Shores area that features a hanging 600-gallon bucket that periodically dumps water on anyone below. The Explore Village also has water rides and attractions. Then don’t forget to take a sweatshirt as many Carlsbad days start out foggy and cool, get warm as the sun comes out and cool down again in the evening. You'll be walking around a great deal, so be sure to wear shoes appropriate for a busy day. And add some sunscreen to protect yourself from sunburn. If your kid is under 4, a stroller can be a real lifesaver as the park is very big and has a lot of ground to cover. If you can’t bring your own stroller, you can rent one at the Marketplace at the front of the park.

7. Pets

Pets are not allowed in Legoland, but you can leave them at the free kennels (first come, first served) just outside the front gate. And don’t forget to bring your own food and water and dishes to hold them.

8. Facilities for the smaller visitors

Legoland offers great facilities for mothers with infants and babies, including a changing area with diapers, highchairs, nursing facilities and even a microwave for heating up baby meals.

9. Take the smaller kids to Legoland

The park is ideal for smaller kids who will have big fun in Playtown, an area with slides and activities for younger guests. There is also Fairy Tale Brook, a ride that involves going over the water in a leaf shaped boat and seeing the favorite fairy tale characters.

10. What you shouldn’t miss at Lagoland

Be sure to check out Miniland Indy Speedway, NASA, Mt. Rushmore, and the New York City skyline. Don't miss the Coast Cruise to inhale all the magic of Legoland from the water's perspective looking out. Also, kids love The Big Test, a fire-safety education show with great music, acrobatics, and water. And don’t forget to experience the rides built using Legos, such as The Dragon, Aquazone Wave Racers and Bionicle Blaster.

11. Consider some of the additional activities offered in Legoland

For some extra fee, you can get your face painted, hair braided, portrait drawn or get an airbrush tattoo.

12. Review height requirements for rides

Be sure to check height restrictions in Legoland, which range from 34 to 48 inches for even the tamest rides. Waiting in a hot line only to be told your little one is too little is rather an unpleasant experience. The Legoland Website has an extensive guide that provides information on each ride, including ride requirements.

13. Check show times when you arrive at Legoland, and make sure to see at least one live performance

Designed to hold the attention of youngsters, “Journey to the Lost Temple” is a half-hour musical performance with ample audience participation. There is also a terrific show about fire safety called “Big Test” featuring a real fire truck and including the option of getting splashed with water, so don’t sit in the first few rows unless you are willing to get soaked. Of course, there are magic shows and many other show options. Show times vary so check at the gate when you first enter the park.

14. Take a break to play

Legoland includes multiple play areas for children of all ages where you can create your own Lego masterpiece, play miniature golf or run around the multiple playgrounds.

15. Visiting the Hideaways

When the attraction lines get too long and you don’t feel like testing your child’s patience, head to the Hideaways, a multilevel playground at the back of Legoland. This enormous wooden structure is housed in a fully enclosed area where kids can climb rope ladders, slide, and explore the forts and playhouses up top. And you don’t have to worry about losing kids here as there is one way in and one way out.

16. Visiting the Imagination Zone

If the rides put your youngster on sensory overload, head to the Imagination Zone in Legoland, where there are numerous Lego-building opportunities, including a station that allows older kids to build their own Lego robots and vehicles, and race and battle against others’ creations. Toddlers can climb in a vat of Duplo blocks, bigger building bricks meant for tiny kids, and go to town.

17. Take a break midday to have some rest

Appreciate the healthy food options that Legoland offers, including several restaurants and salad bars that all offer a kid's meal that includes healthy choices. For instance, you can choose a pretty picnic table overlooking ponds and waterfalls at the Garden Restaurant in Miniland. This café serves surprisingly healthy food, including delicious oversized salads, sandwiches served on whole wheat bread, and kid meals featuring peanut butter and jelly and fruit. Or enjoy a pile of fried apple slices served with fresh whipped cream and dusted with sugar and cinnamon served at Granny’s Apple Fries in Castle Hill.

18. Purchase Lego products while visiting

There are numerous shops throughout the parks that offer Lego building kits you will never find in local stores. If you are a fan of the toy, be sure to pick up some kits to bring home with you. One of the best bargains is the chance to buy Legos in bulk. For $7.99 per quarter-pound, you can pick out the colors and shapes you need to create your own masterpiece. If you buy Lego blocks on sale by the pound (or anything else), you can have them held at the park exit and pick them up on the way out.