Of all the amusement parks in Southern California, Legoland is my boys' favorite! The main thing you need to know about Legoland is that its cashless. What if you don't have a credit or debit card, or you forget? No worries. They have cash to card kiosks. Also, you can bring water and small snacks. Here are some extra things that are good to know!
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1. Search for Discounts! Don't just rely on the "deals" section on the Legoland website. Often, different brands have promotions. One year we got a promo code from Burger King for a buy one adult ticket, one child goes for free. This year, I googled BOGO tickets and found an offer from Verizon Up.
2. Download the Legoland App First, this is convenient because you can download your tickets onto your phone. Second, you can and should familiarize yourself with the park. Legoland is not open until midnight like Disneyland. Our last trip, the park was open from 10am - 6pm. So, you don't want to waste time wandering the park. Know which rides are your priorities and have somewhat of a plan. You can make a neat little checklist on the app for rides and experiences you are interested in. It will tell you how many minutes from each item and how tell you the wait times. (If you are coming here on vacation and staying at the Legoland hotel, don't worry about 6pm closing. I've heard the hotel has lots to offer after park hours.)
3. Go on a weekday, and get there a little before opening. I have never gone on a weekend and I don't plan on it. Legoland isn't as large as other major theme parks in Southern California and I've heard it can get very crowded. You have to pay for the option of a virtual line, called "Reserve and Ride" and it isn't cheap. It ranges from $35 to $110 per person. (Although if you live far away and this is a rare trip, you may consider it, especially if you are going on a weekend in the summer.)
4. Preferred Parking is probably not necessary. The Legoland parking lot really isn't that big. If you get there around opening its a very short walk to the park. Even after a long day at the park, I haven't been too tired to walk to the car. If you prefer to just be steps away though, its only $10 more at this time.
5. They are serious about their height requirements. There are plenty of rides for toddlers/preschoolers, but be aware ahead of time if your small child does not meet the requirements of a particular ride to avoid a meltdown. You can have a plan for close alternative rides or activities for your little ones while big kids ride. My 3 (almost 4 year old) is pretty tall for his age and there was only one ride he wanted to ride that he did not meet the height requirements for. (Bionic Blasters, which made me sick just looking at it.) He was even able to ride Coastersaurus, but not without an adult seated next to him. My almost seven year old was about half an inch too short to ride without an adult next to him. They actually pushed his mohawk down to check where his head was.
6. Granny Apple Fries aren't the only must-try desserts. Every article about Legoland says to try the Granny Apple Fries. They are unique and they are good, but I think they have some equally delicious other options. Specifically, my kids enjoyed the Churros Con Chocolate more than the apple fries. Next time, I am skipping the apple fries and going straight to Castle Ice Cream. Everything I saw come out of there looked divine. (That being said I wish I had am ENTIRE bowl of the vanilla dipping cream that comes with the fries.)
7. The Market has healthy organic options for small kids. If you don't want to pack snacks, you do not have to. This market has organic pouches, puffs and other little organic snacks toddlers are used to eating. (That being said, its probably cheaper to pack these items from home.) They also had containers of cut of fruit. The layered watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew melon looked soo good.
8. There are carnival games dispersed around the park. Be prepared for the kids to want the huge stuffed animals hanging around. Either plan to spend $$ or talk to them ahead of time about your spending plans to make for a smooth trip. I think the games are about $5 a try. We actually have been able to get a large Gangar and Charizard from Legoland since my husband is pretty good at a particular game. Maybe google some tips ahead of time you have big Pokemon or Mario fans.
9. Sunblock. Its California. Just wear it, even if its overcast.
10. Scooter rental - worth it if you have limited mobility! The first time we went to Legoland, it was a few weeks before my due date with baby dragon (who was born a couple ounces short of 9 lbs.) I just could not walk the whole park. We rented a scooter. It was so simple and the few rides I was able to ride, we didn't have to wait in line!
Bonus Tips for those who are Germ Cautious - Legoland is VERY hands on. There are MANY high touch areas. There are multiple playgrounds and multiple Lego building areas. I personally skip those areas because we can do those things at home, and my kids are totally fine with it. Of course, they still touch the rides and basically everything else, so I wipe their hands every few rides.
Have a great time at Legoland
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