Mom Rewritten

52 Best Tips for LEGOLAND California with Kids (2024)

52 Best Tips for LEGOLAND California with Kids (2024)

LEGOLAND California resort is an  AWESOME  park for a wide variety of ages. These are the best LEGOLAND California tips, with touring advice for everything there is to see and do at this San Diego theme park. This is the ultimate guide on what to expect during a day at LEGOLAND California with kids. 

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Mom Rewritten uses affiliate links which means I may earn a small commission if you purchase through the links in these posts. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. For more information, see the Privacy Policy and Disclosures tab. 

LEGOLAND has provided complimentary day passes for me & my family.   This post was originally posted on Jan 20th, 2015 and contains updated information.

Best Tips for LEGOLAND California

LEGOLAND theme park is family-friendly with an emphasis on younger guests. There are play areas for toddlers, rides that will please elementary-aged kids and LEGO displays that will put any teen or adult in awe. LEGOLAND is safe, clean and well-kept.

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LEGOLAND is located in  Carlsbad , which is about 45 minutes drive north of downtown San Diego. If you’re driving down from Anaheim (where Disneyland is located), expect at least 60 minutes drive south. 

As a San Diego native, my family and I have been going to LEGOLAND California since it first opened! There are over 60 rides and attractions in the 128-acre park. The LEGOLAND parks have grown quite a bit over the years but some things have remained constant throughout. 

Keep reading for my family guide and tips for visiting LEGOLAND California with kids!

LEGOLAND California with Kids

Do i need theme park reservations for legoland california.

There is an an advance park reservation system for LEGOLAND, with dates chosen when tickets are purchased. Purchase  LEGOLAND tickets online , then visit on the date(s) chosen. Use tickets for entry at the theme park front gates.

Does LEGOLAND Offer Early Entry?

Guests who purchase a  LEGOLAND theme park package  that includes a hotel overnight and tickets automatically receive early entry to access select attractions.

These LEGOLAND California tips for traveling with kids is the ultimate guide to enjoying this San Diego California theme park. Find out more about what to see & do, visiting with teens, what to eat and more about the LEGOLAND water park, seasonal events and aquarium.

LEGOLAND California Tips for Family Travel

These tips for LEGOLAND California with kids will help you properly plan your day. The park is very easy to navigate, but includes a lot of walking with stops for rides and attractions along the way. Start your planning by looking at the park map on the LEGOLAND California mobile app to plot out your day. 

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Even on a visit during non-peak season, you’ll be hard-pressed to see and do everything in one day. Park hours at LEGOLAND California vary throughout the year, so always check the calendar before your visit. LEGOLAND does have mid-week days when it’s completely closed in the off-season. 

LEGOLAND is located in a popular San Diego area, so make sure to check out the other  things to do in Carlsbad .

Dinosaur models at legoland california

Discounted LEGOLAND Vacation Tickets

There is no reason to pay full price for LEGOLAND tickets, when they’re found at great discounts online! Guests can purchase discounted LEGOLAND  vacation packages  for both hotel and tickets. 

Visitors can also purchase individual  LEGOLAND tickets  on the Get Away Today website.

Southern California Discount Travel

My travel partners at Get Away Today offer both discounted theme park tickets and SoCal-area hotels to fit any budget! Many hotels include exclusive discounts like free parking, complimentary breakfast or even free nights, just for booking through Get Away Today.

When you’re ready to book your Southern California vacation, my friends at Get Away Today are ready to help! Call 1-855-GET-AWAY to book your trip.

BONUS DISCOUNT! – Mention code REWRITTEN to receive an extra discount off your SoCal vacation package of two or more days.

LEGOLAND California with Kids Q & A

What’s the best age for legoland california.

If you’re traveling with a child 2-12 years old, this is the ideal age for the theme park. Keep reading for tips on what to do at LEGOLAND California with kids, including babies and teenagers.

When is the best time to go to LEGOLAND California?

Avoid weekends, spring break, summer season, 3-day weekends and holidays, if possible. Hint: If school is out of session, LEGOLAND will be busy! 

Mid-week visits will usually reward guests with much lower crowds. Aim to go on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. Be sure to check the blackout calendar during non-peak season, as LEGOLAND California isn’t open every day.

Do you need to be a LEGO fanatic to enjoy the theme park?

Not at all. While everything in the theme park  is  LEGO-themed, you don’t have to be a huge building block fan to enjoy the rides, shows and attractions.  If you are a LEGO lover, that’s a bonus!

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What Should You Bring to LEGOLAND California?

LEGOLAND California is located in Carlsbad, just a few miles from the Pacific Ocean. It can be chilly and windy, especially during the winter and spring. Bring a lightweight jacket or sweatshirt (this  LEGO Wear jacket  will get kids in the mood!). 

If your kids plan to enjoy the many splash pads at LEGOLAND California, bring the essentials like an extra set of clothes. Pack in a swimsuit,  LEGO-themed beach towel  and sandals with good traction on the bottoms.

Definitely pack your sunscreen. While it might be overcast early in the day, the sun often peeks out after noon and it may get very hot. 

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Planning for a Day at LEGOLAND California

Parking at legoland.

The LEGOLAND California parking fee is $35 per car, per day. If you arrive early, you’ll be very close to the front entrance. There is a short (slightly inclined) walk to the front entrance. It’s not necessary to purchase the “preferred parking” at the additional cost.

Cashless Theme Park

One of the top tips for LEGOLAND California is to bring credit cards or debit cards for payments. LEGOLAND California is completely cashless.

Security Checks

All backpacks, bags, purses and strollers will be checked before entering the park.

Rainy Day Promise

On days when heavy rain closes many of the theme park rides for an extended time, the resort management will initiate the Rainy Day Promise. Guests with paid tickets may use their existing ticket for one more visit within one year from that date.

Can You Bring Outside Food into LEGOLAND?

Water bottles and small snacks are permitted.

LEGOLAND Funtown sign


Before leaving home, download the LEGOLAND app and add to your smart phone. The mobile app and interactive map will allow you to more easily tour the theme park during your stay. 

Through the LEGOLAND app, guests can find an interactive park map. Navigate the park with directions for attractions, dining, restrooms and shopping. Get show times and view ride wait times.

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Charging Cell Phones at LEGOLAND California

To best use the LEGOLAND app, it’s important to keep a full charge on your smart phone. There are 2 secure cell phone charging locker stations inside the LEGOLAND California amusement park. 

I recommend bringing your own charger and cord. The  Anker portable charger  is my go-to for theme park travel. This power bank holds enough for multiple charges and can accommodate several cords at the same time.

Areas of LEGOLAND California

This family friendly theme park is broken up into 9 distinctly themed zones. Within each zone are rides and attractions for various ages. 

By walking in a circular loop, you’ll be able to hit each of the areas of LEGOLAND California. Branch off into Miniland USA, which is centrally located within the park. 

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Here are the sections, moving from left to right around the loop. I’ve included rides to be found in each area (additional attractions will be discussed in the rest of the article).

  • The Beginning  – Entrance of the park, Big Shop, stroller rentals and lockers
  • *NEW* Dino Valley – Coastersaurus, DUPLO Little Dino Trail, Explorer River Quest
  • LEGO Movie World  – Emmet’s Flying Adventure, Unikitty’s Disco Drop, Queen Watevra’s Carousel
  • Fun Town  – Driving School, Junior Driving School, Skipper School, Kid Power Tower, LEGOLAND Express, Sky Patrol.

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  • Pirate Shores  – Captain Cranky’s Challenge, Splash Battle
  • LEGO City  – LEGO City: Deep Sea Adventure
  • Miniland USA  – Coast Cruise
  • Castle Hill  – The Dragon Coaster, Royal Joust
  • Land of Adventure  – Lost Kingdom Adventure, Beetle Bounce, Cargo Ace
  • Imagination Zone  – Bionicle Blaster, LEGO Technic Coaster
  • LEGO Ninjago World  – LEGO Ninjago The Ride

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Dino Valley

Dino Valley is the very first area you’ll encounter if you walk left after the entrance to LEGOLAND California. Previously called “Explorer Island”, this newly refurbished area includes three rides and a sandbox play area.

I don’t recommend starting your day here. Continue walking through to LEGO Movie World. Return to Dino Valley as your last stop of the day. 

DUPLO Little Dino Trail  – Outdoor Jeep ride, with the dinosaurs being made of DUPLO LEGO, naturally! Each of the ride vehicles seats four riders without any height requirement. The front seats have access to two “cameras” for riders to snap photos during the trip!

Legoland California duplo ride

Coastersaurus  – Dinosaur themed coaster with very mild thrills. It’s an ideal first roller coaster for preschoolers. There is a 36″ height requirement. Use the Parent Swap program if needed (discussed further in the baby and toddler section).

Explorer River Quest – Slow and unscary, this ride is a LEGOLAND must-do for dinosaur fans. There is no minimum height requirement. This lazy boat road takes families along the water with awesome dinosaur models to spot along the way.

Legoland california explorer river quest ride with two kids in a boat and dinosaur in the background

LEGO Movie World

LEGO Movie World is themed to the popular LEGO movies and features characters from the films. Bricksburg has come to life, complete with a water feature for splashing and plenty of room for people watching. 

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These are the must-see attractions inside the new LEGO Movie World area at LEGOLAND California.

Emmet’s Flying Adventure Ride  – Seated in the “Triple Decker Flying Couch”, guests view the action on the full dome virtual screen. This is a motion simulator ride so if these rides make you nauseated, you might want to sit out. 

It’s really a cool ride and the flagship of this new area. Emmet’s Flying Adventure usually boasts the longest wait time of any attraction at LEGOLAND California. I highly recommend visiting this ride first thing in the morning.

Queen Watevra’s Carousel  – The LEGO Friend’s Riding Camp carousel has been made over into this new theme, complete with a colorful overhaul and change of music. 

As a heads up, these horses are extremely uncomfortable for adults to sit on. Consider sitting on one of the chairs instead.

Unikitty’s Disco Drop!  – Spin, rise, bounce and drop on this colorful tower ride that takes to the skies. This ride is actually more intense than it appears at first glance! And you’ve gotta love the rainbow arch of LEGO bricks at the entrance.

legoland california unikitty disco drop ride

Driving School and Junior Driving School  – Fun Town really is…fun! With their trackless vehicles, most kids will say these are their  favorite  attractions. Driving School is a can’t-miss LEGOLAND attraction, just for children. 

Junior Driving School is for little ones aged 3-5. Driving School is for ages 6-12 only. Parents can watch from the sidelines where there are concrete bleacher seats. Kids can even purchase their own LEGOLAND Driving School license.

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Kid Power Tower & LEGOLAND Express  – You’ll find these two rides inside Duplo Playtown, access by stairs or a ramp. The Kid Power Tower offers an overlook of the theme park, in a hand-operated rope pull that lifts seated guests.

The LEGOLAND Express is a petite train ride through the farm inside Playtown. Toddlers especially enjoy this one.

Skipper School  – Similar to Driving School, trackless boats float along the canal. All ages can ride this one together. 

LEGOLAND Skipper School

Fun Town Police & Fire Academy  – Kids love participating as a team with their family. Teams spray water on a “burning” building in competition with other ride vehicles.

Sky Patrol  – Up to two guests fit inside these helicopters that rise, lower and spin with hand controls.

Pirate Shores

Captain Cranky’s Challenge  – This rotating pirate ship ride rocks and swings in all directions. If you’re prone to motion sickness, consider sitting this one out!

Splash Battle  – Spray water at on-lookers from a pirate ship vehicle. But beware, spectators can fire water cannons back at you! Expect to get soaked on this water attraction.

  • LEGO City: Deep Sea Adventure

LEGO City Deep Sea Adventure  – A hybrid attraction that’s part interactive treasure hunt, submarine ride and aquarium. Riders board a submarine, then peer through the portholes and windows to peek at the many types of real sea life, including sharks! 

There are fun LEGO items to spy along the way as well. The touch-screens inside the ride encourage kids to treasure hunt on a search for items on the checklist.


Coast Cruise  – The lone ride in Miniland USA is a guided boat tour. Guests can see whimsical LEGO builds including this quirky take on Mount Rushmore.

LEGOLAND Mount Rushmore

LEGOLAND’s Miniland USA  – This awesome attraction is at the heart of what LEGO is all about. Built by their “master builders”, these city representations include New York, San Francisco, New Orleans, Washington DC and Las Vegas. San Diego is the newest section features in Miniland USA!

LEGOLAND California Miniland USA

There are small buttons kids can push to play a sound clip. Kids can also make features in the scenes move. Tiny LEGO cars move, LEGO figures dance, music plays and more. Plan to spend at least an hour exploring Miniland USA. There’s lots of see in this detailed area.

LEGOLAND California Las Vegas scene in Miniland USA

After you’ve explored the Miniland USA cities, take a walk on the Miniland USA “Block of Fame” and see famous faces (like this one of Elvis!). There are also famous Star Wars characters as well.

LEGOLAND Block of Fame Elvis Presley bust

Castle Hill

The Dragon  – Once your kid has tackled some of the other tame coasters, The Dragon is a great step up. Start inside with a slow ride in the dragon, touring the castle. Then the doors open and riders are treated to thrilling dips and turns.

Royal Joust  – This adorable horse ride takes kids on a journey through the Castle Hill area. The Royal Joust is for kids aged 4-12 only (and must be 36″ as well).

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Land of Adventure

Beetle Bounce  – This one is only for younger guests, between 36-55″ in height.

Cargo Ace  – Airplanes “fly” in a circle, with a sweeping turn that’s faster than it looks. Grown ups are permitted to ride with kids. Just know that getting in and out of the small planes can be tricky!

Lost Kingdom Adventure  – This “Indiana Jones” inspired laser ride brings out the competitive spirit. Up to four guests per ride vehicle can shoot laser guns at the targets and tally points.

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Imagination Zone

LEGO Technic Coaster  – The most thrilling ride at LEGOLAND California, this “crazy mouse” coaster has an exciting first drop.

Bionicle Blaster  – A spinning “tea cup” ride with a rider-powered wheel to control speed. Another one to skip if you suffer from nausea.

LEGOLAND oversized Bionicles figures inside the theme park

Ferrari Build and Race

This is a new interactive LEGO building experience like no other. Enter the “garage” to see a life-size LEGO Ferrari F40, made with 356,863 LEGO blocks!

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Various stations inside offer up plenty of race car design opportunities. Test your vehicle on one of the three different race tracks. Each track offers a different experience including a virtual version.

My son’s favorite was getting his Ferrari to jump through the tire, while the video footage is caught on film. Bystanders can watch the reply in slow motion, it’s so cool! 

A Duplo zone for younger kids allows them to build on a larger scale. Don’t forget the photo ops at the Ferrari and in the winner’s circle.

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LEGO Ninjago World

LEGO Ninjago The Ride  – LEGO NINJAGO is a small area in the park that features a very cool 4-D interactive ride. There’s no height restriction so anyone can ride.

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Thrill Rides Tips at LEGOLAND California

A majority of the rides at LEGOLAND California are geared for younger kids. However there are a few thrill-type rides that are appropriate for older kids. These attractions are ideal for elementary-aged kids, and would please teens and adults as well. 

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Nothing too crazy, but still thrilling! The tallest height restriction is 42″ and several rides have an age requirement as well, so check the signage. These are the three roller coasters at LEGOLAND California:

  • LEGO Technic Coaster – must be 42″ tall and at least 4 years old
  • The Dragon Coaster – must be 40″ tall
  • Coastersaurus – with a 36″ height restriction, it’s a good first roller coaster for younger kids

Thrill Ride LEGOLAND California Tips:

  • Rides offer a “parent swap” so that one parent can wait with a non-riding child and then switch places so that the other parent can ride.
  • Some of these favorite rides can have the longest wait times. Scroll through for ways to shorten time spent in queue.
  • Visit the thrill rides first thing after park opening for a shorter wait in line.

LEGOLAND Wyld Style character with kids

Kid’s Play Areas at LEGOLAND California

Even if you never step foot on an actual ride at LEGOLAND, there’s so much to keep busy kids active throughout the day. If your kids need to run and play, there are a few areas where they can burn off steam. 

Unlike the LEGOLAND water park (which carries an additional fee), these splash and play areas are included in regular park admission. It’s acceptable to bring bathing suits and towels to let the kids get wet. 

LEGOLAND splash pad in lego movie world

There are many areas that are appropriate for toddlers to hang out while waiting for older siblings to ride.

One of the best tips for LEGOLAND California is to allow plenty of free play time in your schedule. Check out these free play locations in various parts of the park at LEGOLAND California.

Splash Pad and Benny’s Spaceship – Multi-level kid’s space themed play structure with internal stairs and slides. A good number of benches around for adults to sit and watch kids.

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Dino Outpost  – Sandy area with buried dinosaur fossils underneath. Separate LEGO DUPLO building block area.

Duplo Playtown  – This is the area for toddlers and preschoolers! Quaint little houses are set up like a town including a fire station with a pole and tons of stairs and slides. 

The LEGOLAND Express, a small train, circles around here as well. Plan for plenty of time in this area if you have a young child, they’ll absolutely love this place!

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Pirate Reef and Swabbie’s Deck –  Get soaked on a warm day at Pirate Reef or Swabbie’s Deck, both located in the Pirate Shores area. 

The Hideaways –  A complex arrangement of rope ladders and slides. There’s only one way in and out. Parents can sit on the wall surrounding the play area and not worry their kids will leave without them. 

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Dune Raiders  – Kids and adults can slide down the long, wavy slides.

Pharaoh’s Revenge –  Enclosed multi-level play space with tunnels and the ability to shoot foam balls at each other. It’s loud and hectic inside, so avoid if you or your kids don’t like chaos.

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Ninjago World

Kai’s Spinners, Cole’s Rock Climb and Jay’s Lightning Drill –  Small areas for active play near the ride.

LEGO Ninjago Training Camp – My kids’ favorite place to play, this extensive area offers so much fun in the way of slides and climbing apparatus with a ninja theme.

LEGOLAND Ninjago training camp play area

LEGO Building Areas for Super Fans

LEGOLAND offers a hands-on theme park experience for all ages that includes building with their famous blocks. Most of the areas inside LEGOLAND California have free play building spots. Kids and adults can use the provided LEGO bricks to unleash creativity. 

Many locations have nicely shaded spaces or air conditioning, ideal when the weather is hot. All the blocks need to stay in the area when families are done playing. 

Boy building with Lego bricks at LEGOLAND

If you have a child who can’t get enough of simply building LEGO creations, be sure to stop inside several of these areas. Kids can build and play with the thousands of LEGOS that are available in these areas:

  • Build Watevra You Wa’Na Build (LEGO Movie World)  
  • LEGO Life (Fun Town) 
  • Builders’ Guild (Castle Hill) 
  • Coast Guard Build-a-Boat (Miniland USA)
  • Zane’s Temple Build (Land of Adventure) 
  • LEGO Dots Build Your Art Gallery (Imagination Zone)
  • LEGO Mindstorms (Imagination Zone)

Many ride queue areas also have LEGO building stations. Kids can build here while parents are waiting in line.

LEGOLAND Tips for Dining Options

If you’re expecting the same boring theme park options for dining, no fear! LEGOLAND California offers only fresh, made-on-site meals that are unique and delicious. 

Quite often dishes are prepared right in front of you. This makes for a hot meal that’s made to order. It can also mean that wait times for food can be longer than normal than other amusement parks.

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Choose from items like the pork belly bao sandwiches, pesto chicken salad sandwich or freshly prepared stir fry ramen noodle bowls. The Pizza & Pasta buffet restaurant is a popular place. We’ve also enjoyed the Knight’s Smokehouse BBQ with slow-cooked Texas BBQ dishes and craft beer.

And yes, you can still find the usual burgers, fries and soft serve cones if that’s what you want to eat. For dessert, you have to grab a box (or two) of Granny’s Apple Fries. You might not want to share!

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LEGOLAND Assisted Access Pass

If you have a guest with special needs, visit Guest Services before entering the park. You’ll be supplied with a simple “Assisted Access Pass”. This business card will be noted with the date, number of people in your party and the name of the person for whom the card is issued. 

We used this card in the past for one of my children (who has autism). Instructions on the card let us know that we were permitted to enter rides through the exit. Families are able to wait there and not have to stand in a crowded queue.

LEGOLAND Tips for Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers

In a theme park that’s geared for younger guests, there’s a good amount of things for babies, toddlers and preschoolers to do at LEGOLAND. 

The following sections will discuss height restrictions for young children, best rides and other important things to know before you go.

LEGOLAND Friends figures with toddler

LEGOLAND California with Kids – Height Requirements

Be aware of signage before getting in line. Some attractions do not have height restrictions, while others may require a guest accompaniment on the ride.

My advice is to measure the height of young kids before you leave home. Compare your child’s height to the LEGOLAND height requirements, then plan your itinerary from there.

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There are quite a few rides in LEGOLAND California that do  not  have height restrictions, so they’re perfect for babies and toddlers. There are also some fun, kid-friendly play areas that are tailored to younger kids.

LEGOLAND California attraction signage

Best Rides for Little Kids at LEGOLAND

These attractions at LEGOLAND California have low or no height requirements. These are the most ideal rides for babies, toddlers and preschoolers:

  • Cargo Ace (must be able to stand)
  • Coast Cruise
  • DUPLO Little Dino Trail
  • Explorer River Quest
  • Junior Driving School (for ages 3-5)

From cool rides, water parks and billions of bricks, here's why you should plan a LEGOLAND California vacation!

  • LEGO Ninjago The Ride
  • LEGOLAND Express Train Ride
  • Lost Kingdom Adventure (30″)
  • Queen Watevra’s Carousel
  • Royal Joust (for ages 4-12 and over 36″ tall)
  • Safari Trek (34″)
  • Skipper School (34″)
  • Sky Patrol (34″)

LEGOLAND California jousting horse ride

Other Things to Know About Taking Babies to LEGOLAND

Family bathrooms are available throughout LEGOLAND California. Look for changing tables in all restrooms and lower children’s-height sinks for handwashing.

Queue waiting areas sometimes have larger Duplo blocks. Check for the tiny LEGO bricks, which may be a choking hazard for toddlers.

A full baby care center is available in the Fun Town area near Urban Kitchen restaurant. Parents will find rocking chairs, nursing areas and microwaves for heating baby food. 

Strollers are available for rent, at the Marketplace just inside the front entrance (The Beginning). Personal strollers and wagon can be brought inside as well.

LEGOLAND stroller rental

LEGOLAND Parent Swap

Parent Swap is available at LEGOLAND and it works a little differently than at Disney. Families wait all together in line at LEGOLAND CA. 

When a family reaches the front of the line, one parent rides with a child who meets the height requirement. The other parent waits to the side with the non-riding child. When the first parent returns, they switch places. The second parent rides with the child who meets the height requirement.

Save Time with These Tips for LEGOLAND California

Rides at LEGOLAND do not load quickly. As a result lines move very slowly. Don’t like waiting in long lines? There are ways that visitors can avoid the waits and maximize time at LEGOLAND.

Pick Less Busy Vacation Dates

Carefully choose your date to visit LEGOLAND California. Mid-week visits in the “off-season” are preferred for lower crowd levels.

Any time that elementary aged kids are out of school (summer, holiday vacations, 3-day weekends) will be busier. Just be sure to check the LEGOLAND calendar, as they may be closed on certain days.

Kids standing at the welcome letters in the front entrance of LEGOLAND california

Aim to Arrive a Park Opening

Just like I always suggest rope drop at Disneyland , it pays to be an early bird at LEGOLAND. Arrive to the gates ahead of opening clear security. Gates usually open early (often up to 30 minutes early). You’ll be first in line for the best attractions!

Have a Touring Strategy

Once through the park entrance, LEGOLAND guests can go either left or right, around the “lagoon” and Miniland USA. I recommend walking towards the back of the park first in either direction. The back of the park will be less crowded. 

Best plan:  Go left for Emmet’s Flying Adventure in LEGO Movie World, one of the most popular rides at LEGOLAND California. 

From cool rides, water parks and billions of bricks, here's why you should plan a LEGOLAND California vacation!

Pay More to Maximize Your LEGOLAND Vacation

If you  really  don’t want to wait in lines, these extra cost additions can help your family maximize time:

Consider purchasing Reserve ‘n’ Ride. This add-on offers three levels that will reduce wait times 25-99% at an additional cost from between $35 to $100 per person.

Opt to visit LEGOLAND for more than one day. This is ideal for families that like to take mid-day breaks. Also if you’re interested in experiencing the LEGO building zones and Miniland more deeply, multiple days are best.

legoland dino valley figure

Entertainment Tips for LEGOLAND California

Fireworks only happen during special seasonal events. But there are still plenty of non-ride entertainment choices around the SoCal theme park.

  • Meet n’ greet area for popular characters from the films inside Emmet’s Super Suite .
  • Watch a 4D show inside the LEGO Show Place Theater . There are several versions, each lasting about 15 minutes.
  • The Adventure’s Club  walk-through is a favorite for my older ones. There’s a quest to find “keys” hidden through this Indiana Jones-style search. Preschoolers may be a little nervous of the darker areas and eerie must inside.
  • Don’t miss the LEGO Factory Tour . This brief walkthrough shows exactly how LEGO bricks are made, from start to finish.
  • Mini-figure trading happens between guests and Model Citizen (LEGOLAND employees). Look on a Model Citizen’s Brick Badge and negotiate a trade!
  • Celebrating a special occasion, like a birthday? Pick up a complimentary Pop Badge at guest services. They also hand out Pop Badges during special events.

little girl wearing a legoland birthday pop badge

Best Deals on Discounted LEGOLAND California Tickets

Visitors can purchase individual  LEGOLAND tickets  or full Southern California vacation packages on the Get Away Today website.

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Free LEGOLAND Admission for Kids in October

If you plan on a fall trip, this one of the BEST money saving tips for LEGOLAND California. Each October in San Diego, many theme parks and restaurants offer FREE entertainment for kids! 

LEGOLAND is a participant in this special offer every year. Find out how you can get your kid’s free offer on this article,  Kids FREE in San Diego for October .

LEGOLAND California is located in Carlsbad, within San Diego county. If you’re planning on visiting multiple SoCal destinations, it’s highly recommended to rent a car. Click the links below for additional tips on visiting each location.

Disneyland Resort  in Anaheim- 63 miles from LEGOLAND California

SeaWorld San Diego  in Mission Valley – 30 miles from LEGOLAND California

Sesame Place  in Chula Vista – 46 miles from LEGOLAND California

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I highly recommend staying at one of the on-site hotels when visiting LEGOLAND California. The two LEGO-themed hotels are literally steps away from the theme park front entrance. That makes either the  LEGOLAND Hotel  or the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel perfect for a mid-day break. Within minutes, guests can be relaxing in their rooms.

LEGOLAND is known for their unique, tongue-in-cheek humor. It should be no surprise that these unique hotels feature a disco ball in the elevator and a treasure hunt inside the rooms!

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Rooms at both the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel and the original LEGOLAND Hotel are heavily themed. At the  LEGOLAND Castle Hotel  guests can choose from castle-themed rooms, naturally – Knights & Dragons, Royal Princess or Magic Wizard. 

READ MORE : Full review of what to expect at the LEGOLAND Hotel .

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And at the LEGOLAND Hotel, pick from Pirate, Kingdom, Adventure, Friends, and LEGO NINJAGO. My friend Karen at  Desert Chica  has a review on the new  LEGOLAND Castle Hotel  with in-room photos.

A stay at one of the two LEGOLAND hotels includes a complimentary breakfast. Kids will also receive a welcome treasure hunt with a LEGO prize. 

One of the nicest features (for the benefit of the grown-ups!) is a separate kid’s sleeping area with entertainment center, bunk bed and pull out trundle.

Kids on the bunk bed in the Adventure separate sleeping area at the LEGOLAND Hotel

How close are the LEGOLAND hotels to the theme park front entrance?

The LEGOLAND Hotel and LEGOLAND Castle Hotel are literally a minute-long walk from each other, across a short walkway. Each of the hotels are just steps away from the LEGOLAND California theme park front entrance. 

Do LEGOLAND hotel guests get into the park early?

Yes, guests of the LEGOLAND resort hotels (with a valid theme park ticket) receive 30 minutes of early entry before the general public is admitted. Note that this early access is only for a few select attractions.

legoland san diego field trip

Tips for LEGOLAND California Souvenir Shopping

Of course, in a theme park that’s known for it’s popular building bricks, there are many places to buy your favorite toys. 

The best place to find souvenirs inside LEGOLAND California is at The Big Shop. This large gift shop is home to all things LEGO including exclusive items.

You’ll find souvenir LEGOLAND products including shirts and hats as well as LEGO building kits like LEGO Friends, Star Wars, Disney, and DUPLO.

legoland san diego field trip

Forgot a swim suit or towel for the splash pad or water park? Visit Brick Brothers Trading Co. for a large variety of beachwear.

LEGOLAND offers package pickup service, so that guests can shop throughout the day. Simply pick up your bags at the end of the day before exiting.

Prices for LEGO sets are comparable in the theme park to what you’ll find elsewhere. For items like  LEGO t-shirts  or hats, I’d recommend purchasing before or after a trip to save money.

legoland san diego field trip

Water Park Fun at LEGOLAND California with Kids

When the weather warms, our thoughts turn to the water-play activities at the expansive LEGOLAND Water Park! From toddler splash pads, water slides for big kids, a lazy river, and a giant wave pool, there’s plenty here for the whole family. 

These LEGOLAND California tips for traveling with kids is the ultimate guide to enjoying this San Diego California theme park. Find out more about what to see & do, visiting with teens, what to eat and more about the LEGOLAND water park, seasonal events and aquarium.

Entrance to the water park is an additional charge on top of the regular park admission. Water park days and hours of operation vary upon the season, so check the LEGOLAND website to make sure it’s open during your visit before you pack your swim suits! 

When the weather is agreeable you’ll want to spend a good portion of the day here, enjoying the water rides. A LEGOLAND Resort Hopper ticket is required for admission to the water park portion. I highly recommend you consider adding on an extra day to your vacation if you plan to do the water park.

READ MORE: All the LEGOLAND tips in this post about the LEGOLAND California Water Park Tips .

LEGOLAND California Water Park Joker Soaker

LEGOLAND Sea Life Aquarium

The Sea Life Aquarium at LEGOLAND California combines a real, learning aquarium of actual sea life with fun LEGO models. Guests can see jelly fish and seahorses, spy octopus and sharks, reach inside touch pools, and experience feeder talks.

The Sea Life Aquarium is compact and will take about an hour to completely walk through. Allow between 1-2 hours for exploring Sea Life depending upon how interested your children are.

During busier seasons and holiday events, strollers are not allowed inside so make arrangements for little ones. I brought a front carrier for my baby so I wouldn’t have to hold her in my arms the entire time. 

Admission to the Sea Life Aquarium can be purchased separately or as an add-on to your LEGOLAND park ticket. My travel partner Get Away Today offers the bundled  LEGOLAND discounted ticket .

LEGOLAND Sea Life Aquarium

LEGOLAND Halloween Special Event

Brick-or-Treat Party Nights at LEGOLAND California offers children and their families trick-or-treating and entertainment throughout the Park on Saturday nights in October. This is a special ticketed event that is not included with regular park admission. 

Guests are invited to dress in costume and there is candy given, certain rides are open during the event as well as a costume contest and not-too-scary Halloween-themed entertainment for kids.

Read more LEGOLAND tips for the fall special event,  LEGOLAND Halloween California Brick-or-Treat Guide .

LEGOLAND Halloween giant lego pumpkin with girl inside

LEGOLAND California with Kids for the Holidays

All of LEGOLAND gets into the holiday spirit during the winter season, with festivities and shows that are included in the regular park admission. There are also seasonal foods and treats, holiday decor and special gift shopping areas. 

Visit Miniland U.S.A. to see more of the Christmas spirit, where many of the buildings have fun holiday touches, including Santa and his sleigh and wreaths decorating the LEGO White House.

Check out more about celebrating  Holidays at LEGOLAND California – Ultimate Seasonal Guide.

LEGOLAND White House decorated for the holidays

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Brick-or-Treat Party Nights Halloween Celebration at LEGOLAND® California Resort

Wednesday 12th of September 2018

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LEGOLAND California: A Trip the Whole Family Will Enjoy

Emmets Superstore Live Show at Legoland Ca

LEGOLAND California is a dreamland for LEGO lovers of all ages. This magnificent theme park features over 22,000 LEGO models constructed from over 57 million pieces! Kids will be enchanted from the minute they enter the park.

Located in Carlsbad , California, the flower capital of the US, LEGOLAND California opened their doors in March of 1999. This LEGOLAND park was the third in the world to open. It was also the first in the USA to invite families into their incredible park.

The famous California resort welcomes over 1.4 million visitors to their mind-blowing 124-acre theme park each year. My favorite part of any visit to LEGOLAND is seeing the kids’ smiles from ear to ear, pasted on their little faces.

You can jump on into a real submarine for the ultimate underwater experience. Or, ride the waves on a boat around a miniature Lady Liberty built from LEGO brick. No matter what you choose to do, you create some treasured memories with your loved ones.

If you're planning a trip to the Golden State, LEGOLAND is a must-see attraction. Immerse the family in a park full of interactive family-friendly rides, building workshops, and other amazing attractions.

Awe-inspiring experiences await families who are looking for a fun-filled day with their children! The LEGOLAND franchise also features a park dedicated to all things aquatic formally known as the SEA LIFE Aquarium at LEGOLAND . For those looking to cool off and splash around on a hot summer afternoon, LEGOLAND has a water park known as LEGOLAND Water Park . The fun never stops when there's so much to do!

Attention all visitors to LEGOLAND California! Starting March 22, embark on an adventure to the prehistoric era with the park's latest attraction, Dino Valley at Legoland California . Roam amongst towering LEGO dinosaurs and experience thrilling dinosaur-themed rides and attractions that will transport you back in time. Get ready to unearth excitement and discovery as you explore what's new and what to expect at the all-new Dino Valley. Don't miss out on this Jurassic journey at LEGOLAND California!

Legoland Castle Hotel

Stay Nearby

Designed with families and their kids in mind, LEGOLAND Castle Hotel at the LEGOLAND California Resort in Carlsbad is a feast for the imagination. You're sure to have as much fun as Todd does on his tour!

Price of Admission to LEGOLAND California Park in 2024

Admission to LEGOLAND is available through either day tickets or annual passes.

The prices for day tickets are as follows:

  • 1-Day Tickets (One or Multi-Park): Starting from $79 per person
  • 2-Day Tickets (One or Multi-Park): Starting from $99 per person

LEGOLAND is also offering a special deal on tickets to celebrate their 25th birthday in 2024. The following ticket rates are available until March 10th:

  • 1-Day LEGOLAND Theme Park: Adult $84, Child $25
  • 1-Day SEA LIFE Hopper: Adult $94, Child $40

Each full-price adult ticket allows you to buy up to 4 kid tickets at the discounted rate.

There’s enough to do at LEGOLAND that the 2-day pass is a viable option for families who want to spend most of their time near the park. There are also Family Vacation Packages for those staying at the on-site hotels.

All tickets are cheaper when purchased in advance online compared to gate prices, so I suggest buying your tickets before your trip to save more money.

Alternatively, it’s a fantastic money saving idea to grab All-inclusive Go City San Diego passes for your entire family using our discount code GVSD5OFF – it’s the ultimate way to save!

Main Entrance to Legoland Ca

Annual Passes for LEGOLAND California

LEGOLAND Resort in California features four annual pass selections. Here are the different choices, as well as the per-ticket price:

  • Silver Annual Pass $179
  • Gold Annual Pass $229 or $15 per month
  • Platinum Annual Pass $279 or $18.50 per month
  • Elite Annual Pass $349 or $23.25 per month

Gold, Platinum, and Elite passes are available for a flat fee or can be paid in monthly installments. Note that these monthly installments require an initial payment of $49, $57, and $70 per person respectively. The monthly payment option is ideal for families who will visit the park often throughout the year, but who are looking for an affordable alternative to paying one lump sum.

The silver annual pass gives you admission to the Park and offers discount prices for various activities. Also, the Elite Annual Pass will provide you with access to the Park, SEA LIFE Aquarium , and the LEGOLAND® Water Park , too, as well as many other bonuses and discounts.

The park also offers single LEGOLAND California tickets to purchase.

Yes, all the annual passes include discounts for a stay and the LEGOLAND Hotel!

Legoland California Main Entrance Sign

Save BIG on Admission to LEGOLAND California

The best way to get the best prices to LEGOLAND California is to take advantage of amazing savings with a Go San Diego All-Inclusive Pass .

The only complaint visitors have about their trip to LEGOLAND California, is that one day is not enough to enjoy all that the Resort has to offer.

You will have unlimited access to over 60 rides with free admission at LEGOLAND San Diego! For maximum savings, combine your LEGOLAND tickets with a trip to the San Diego Zoo and SeaWorld San Diego for 55% savings! Passes start at $99 for adults and $89 for children.

Pre-purchase an All-Inclusive Go San Diego pass for additional exclusive saving . Our exclusive partnership with Go City San Diego pass will maximize your savings so that you can enjoy even more for less!

Attractions Included in LEGOLAND California

Lego Las Vejas in Mini Land Usea at Legoland Ca

The Most Popular Attractions at LEGOLAND California

All the attractions at the LEGOLAND California Resort are amazing! However, there are a few experiences you don't want to miss.

Take a coast to coast trip at Miniland USA to see iconic structures built from LEGO brick! Using 32,496,352 LEGOS, with hard work and dedication, popular sites such as Lady Liberty, and the Vegas strip were re-created.

While you're in Miniland, don't forget to venture on over to Southern California. Here, you can see the Hollywood Bowl and Grauman's Chinese Theatre. Along the miniature beaches, you will see surfers as well as others scattered along the coastline. It's the perfect way to see most of Southern California all in one day.

After your mini trip, climb onboard a real submarine! Check out the beautiful sea life as the submarine submerges, allowing you to see the beautiful colors that exist in the spectacular, underwater world.

All these attractions are ones the whole family can appreciate.

Don't forget to book your stay at the LEGOLAND California Resort and Castle Hotel for early access to the theme park! That way, you can take your time journeying through all the wonders this park has to offer.

Special Exhibition of Lego Ferrari Build and Play Area at Legoland California

Special Events held at LEGOLAND

Are you looking for a safe way to celebrate Halloween? Or perhaps you want to celebrate the New Year in a kid-friendly way. San Diego LEGOLAND allows you to do just that.

Take the kids through the treat stations during Halloween and enter a costume contest! Celebrate with a fun-packed night that all members of the family can enjoy.

The theme park also celebrates Holidays at LEGOLAND in December. Enjoy famous Holiday music while admiring the world's most giant LEGO Christmas tree. You can even snap a photo with LEGO Santa.

Celebrate the New Year differently. LEGOLAND begins the countdown at 6 PM so that your kiddos don't miss their bedtimes. Watch a ball made from LEGOS drop from 22 feet in the air as fireworks illuminate the sky.

Lego Ninjago Weekends Sign at Legoland California


In 2023, LEGOLAND announced a new way to play that celebrates the ninja-centric NINJAGO property. NINJAGO Weekends take place on Saturdays and Sundays from January 20 to February 18, 2024, with one final celebration on Monday, February 19.

Kids can participate in meet-and-greets with favorite characters, watch live shows, and see a NINJAGO movie at the 4D theater.

Dino Valley Sign at Legoland California

Dino Valley

Dino Valley is a new addition coming Spring 2024. It features jurassic-themed meet-and-greets, a themed play area, and two brand new rides: DUPLO® Little Dino Trail and Explorer River Quest.

LEGO World Parade

As part of its 25th anniversary celebration, the park will host a LEGO World Parade in the summer of 2024. Bring the kids to see the floats, featuring large brick structures and popular characters from LEGO franchises, plus singers and dancers.

Dino Valley at LEGOLAND California

Don't miss out! Starting March 22, experience the excitement of Dino Valley , the park's newest attraction at LEGOLAND California. Embark on a journey back in time with thrilling dinosaur-themed rides and attractions awaiting your exploration!

Lego Statue Inside the Big Shop at Legoland Ca

Benefits of staying near LEGOLAND California

Located right at the entrance, the LEGOLAND California Resort and Castle Hotel allows you to beat the hassle of travel and parking when you stay at the hotel. The LEGOLAND hotel offers exclusive deals such as early access to the park.

Make sure to order room service or enjoy the free breakfast buffet every morning before heading out.

There are many great options to stay nearby LEGOLAND California such as the Quality Inn Encinitas Near LEGOLAND located just south in Leucadia and a great option for families traveling on a budget. For more great budget hotel options in San Diego, be sure to check out our article on ‘The Best Budget-friendly Hotels in San Diego’ .

For those looking to stay close with a bit more budget, consider the The Westin Carlsbad Resort & Spa . This four star Carlsbad resort is located not far from LEGOLAND California and surely won’t disappoint.

Shows and Activities That Everyone Can Enjoy

Want to keep the family together? These experiences will allow you to do just that without compromising the fun factor.

Experience a LEGO Movie in Amazing 4D

Experience short movies through physical interactions of the 4D theater! Feel the mist, rumbles, and wind of these action-packed short films.

This attraction may not be suitable for everyone due to strobe effects.

Lego Mariachi Band at Legoland Ca

Meet Your Favorite Characters

Around the Park are characters in costume. Take a stroll around LEGOLAND and introduce your kids to their favorite characters.

Take photos, give high-fives, and enjoy meeting the stars of the LEGO movies.

Sea Life Aquarium next to Legoland Ca Entrance

Visit the SEA LIFE Aquarium

Teach your children about sea life at the kid-oriented, SEA LIFE Aquarium .

For an additional $25, you can let your children have close encounters with sharks, rays, and even an octopus.

Best Ages for LEGOLAND California

LEGOLAND is ideal for young children from ages 2 to 12. Now, that's not to say that everyone can't enjoy it because they can! Even adults.

Kings Market at Castle Hill at Legoland Ca

The Best Exhibits at LEGOLAND for Small Children

The Resort strives to provide an all-inclusive atmosphere for children of all ages to enjoy. Best exhibits and rides for children 34" and taller include:

  • Coast Cruise
  • Fairy Tale Brook
  • Safari Trek

As well as plenty of other rides and popular attractions.

The Best Exhibits at LEGOLAND for Older Children

Don't worry; there are rides for your tweens to enjoy as well!

  • LEGO Technic Coaster
  • Bionicle Blaster
  • The Dragon Roller Coaster
  • Crooler's Twist

The app's map function will let you view each ride by height requirement to plan your day.

Local Tips

Extra Activities to Enjoy

Pizza Mania Dinning Option at Legoland Ca

Grab a Bite to Eat

Try something new! Introduce the family to Granny's Apple Fries. Or, you can stop at one of the other 14 locations to eat within the Resort.

Each dining option includes accommodations for special dietary restrictions.

Don't Forget Your Souvenirs

Many great shops throughout the theme park offer merchandise to bring home with you.

Purchase some Minifigures from the Minifigure Market, or you take a family photo at the Magic Memories Photo Shop!

Stay at the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel

While there are many hotels to stay at around the area, upgrade your hotel experience and book a room in the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel ! This quieter option includes over 250-themed rooms. Some of the rooms even include a separate kid's area!

Be on the lookout for playful surprises for the kids throughout the entire castle.

Kids looking at knight at LEGOLAND California

Attractions that you can visit with a Go City San Diego pass include:

The San Diego Zoo, Birch Aquarium, SeaWorld, Safari Park, LEGOLAND, Harbor Cruise, USS Midway Museum, the NAT Museum, Whaley House, PETCO Park Tour, iFLY San Diego and many, many more!

Want to save more? Use our exclusive discount code GVSD5OFF to save an extra 5%!

LEGOLAND Directions and Parking Information

EV Charging

General Directions

LEGOLAND California Resort is about one hour south of Anaheim, and 30 minutes north of San Diego. Take the Palomar Airport Road Exit off the I-5 Freeway in Carlsbad .

No matter which direction you travel, you should arrive at LEGOLAND Drive to enter at the correct gate.

Parking Information for 2024

There is free parking available for buses and bicycles. However, here is a list of the different parking fees per vehicle:

  • Preferred Parking: starting from $35
  • Motorcycles: $30
  • Campers/RVs: starting from $35

There are also six electric car parking stations available on a first-come, first-serve basis as well.

Quick Tips to Make Your Trip a Breeze

Disabled Accessibility

Visit the LEGOLAND California Resort in the Spring and Summer

During Spring and Summer , all rides and activities are expected to be open. However, this does mean longer lines and more massive crowds.

Although there are a couple of things you can do to beat the crowds.

First, you want to arrive before noon and start in the back of the theme park. This will help you to avoid the long lines.

Second, skip the Coastersaurus, Safari Trek, and Fairy Tale Brook and make your way back to them around 3 PM.

Days and Hours of Operation

LEGOLAND California is open to the public seven days a week. However, between September and late February, they close on select Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

The closures during the offseason are for servicing the rides to ensure safety.

Typically, they open at 10:00 AM and close at 5:00 PM. These times are subject to change, so it's a good idea you check LEGOLAND’s website before you venture out.

Need Assistance While You're There?

If you require assistance or have a question while you are at the Resort, there's no need to run to the information center. Instead, you can text (760) 203-3604 for any inquiries.

If your need is urgent, you can contact any staff member within LEGOLAND for help.

The Park's App is an Absolute Must!

The LEGOLAND California Resort App makes your visit so much easier. With the app's planning tool, you can create a personalized list of what rides are suitable for your children.

This convenient app also tells you estimated wait times for rides and provides you with a map of the Park.

Health and Safety Information for 2024

As of 2024, LEGOLAND California has lifted its previous rules for health and safety that were imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Facemasks are no longer required in the park, and guests do not need to show proof of vaccination to enter. However, LEGOLAND California still aims to maintain a safe and healthy atmosphere for all guests.

Note that these regulations may change in the future to comply with the State of California, so double check the guidelines on the official site before your trip!

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Marcie in Mommyland

10 Tips for LEGOLAND California: Know Before You Go

Posted on Last updated: May 5, 2024

Home » Destinations » California » LEGOLAND » 10 Tips for LEGOLAND California: Know Before You Go

10 Tips for LEGOLAND California: Know Before You Go

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Are you planning a trip to LEGOLAND California in 2024? You’ll definitely want to read these top tips for LEGOLAND California before you start planning!

This list of the best tips for legoland california was written by family travel expert marcie cheung and may contain affiliate links, which means if you click on the link and purchase the item, i will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. all opinions remain my own..

Are you planning your first trip to LEGOLAND California?

If so, I have a few tips for you! In this post, I’ll share my top 10 tips for planning the perfect LEGOLAND vacation. Keep scrolling for all the best LEGOLAND California tips and tricks.

My family loves visiting LEGOLAND California because it’s smaller than other theme parks, it has shorter hours, and there are so many fun things to do there!

You’ll have even more fun if you follow these simple steps below, so let’s get started!

If you’re looking for even more ideas, check out my post about what to do at LEGOLAND California with kids under 5 years old . It includes some of our favorite rides and attractions that are great for toddlers and preschoolers!

Don’t have time to read a bunch of LEGOLAND blog posts and reviews? Here are some of our top picks for visiting LEGOLAND with kids.

Where to Stay at LEGOLAND California

  • LEGOLAND Hotel (this is the original hotel and it has a great pool and indoor play area)
  • LEGOLAND Castle Hotel (this is the newer hotel and it has outdoor movies and a playground)
  • Sheraton Carlsbad Resort & Spa (it’s within walking distance to LEGOLAND and has a pool)
  • MarBrisa Carlsbad Resort (it’s also within walking distance to LEGOLAND and has a pool)
  • Westin Carlsbad Resort & Spa (slightly longer walk but has a pool)

Want to Save Money at LEGOLAND? Check out Get Away Today for the cheapest LEGOLAND packages that include hotel and tickets.

legoland san diego field trip

LEGOLAND California FAQs

The airport closest to LEGOLAND California is the San Diego International Airport (SAN).

Most of the rides are designed for kids ages 2 through 12 years old. They have an entire Duplo area with toddler activities. But there are rides with minimum height requirements that are geared for kids ages 5 and up. Kids who are 48″ tall can even do a bunch of rides on their own.

YES! Kids of all genders can play with LEGOs and enjoy amusement park rides and play areas. The new LEGO Movie World has a lot of recognizable characters and attractions that will appeal to anyone who has seen the movie.

Top LEGOLAND Tips and Tricks to Know BEFORE Your Trip

1. don’t pay full price for tickets.

There are always deals for LEGOLAND California so there’s no reason to pay full price.

They run a great Black Friday sale each year with great discounts on both tickets and hotel rooms. You can also usually find coupons for free kids’ tickets in LEGO magazine or when they partner with other brands.

Image of two boys looking at a LEGO statue in front of the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel in California.

I highly recommend price checking with Get Away Today . They consistently have the lowest price for hotel and ticket packages and they have the BEST customer service. Check your dates HERE .

There’s also a promotion that happens in October where a bunch of San Diego attractions are free for kids. Otherwise, there are TONS of things to do in San Diego for kids any time of year.

2. Best Time to go to LEGOLAND

I think LEGOLAND California is really fun year-round. It’s definitely more crowded on Fridays-Sundays than Mondays-Thursdays. And it’s crowded on holidays. So, that should be your first consideration.

If your schedule is flexible, check out this LEGOLAND California crowd calendar . It can help you figure out the exact dates to go for the fewest crowds.

October is another great time to visit LEGOLAND California. That’s because they run a Kids Free San Diego promotion where you can take advantage of free kids tickets for LEGOLAND as well as other San Diego attractions. They also have some fun Halloween events.

legoland san diego field trip

3. Stay in a LEGOLAND Hotel (trust me)

Ok, I’m not normally someone who tells people to stay in a specific hotel because I know everyone has different needs and budgets. However, I strongly suggest staying in a LEGOLAND hotel for a few reasons.

legoland san diego field trip

First of all, LEGOLAND has fairly condensed hours. It’s usually open 10am-5pm or 10am-6pm. That means there is a LOT of time to figure out something to keep your kids occupied.

Thankfully, the LEGOLAND hotels have tons of kids’ programming, pools, playgrounds, and more.

Secondly, it’s literally a few steps away from the park entrance. That makes it easy to run back to the room if you forget something or need to change clothes or bring a toddler back for a quick nap.

Read my reviews of the LEGOLAND Hotel and the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel .

Thirdly, they are set up to help parents out. The kids have a separate sleeping area with bunk beds and a trundle, LEGOs to play with inside the room, and their own TV. There is also a step stool in the bathroom and a seat reducer on the toilet.

When you book a LEGOLAND hotel , you also get a free breakfast buffet that has basically every kind of food. There are lots of options for kids but there are also great options for adults.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that they serve cocktails at the kids’ play areas at the hotels. Brilliant!

4. Two Days is Perfect

I know that a lot of people plan a LEGOLAND day trip and I think that’s a great option for a lot of families. However, I think two days is the optimal LEGOLAND trip and I’ll tell you why.

legoland san diego field trip

Because the park has shorter hours than other theme parks, the day really does fly by. With a day trip, you probably won’t be able to do all the rides you’d like (especially if there are long lines). With two days, you can easily do all the rides on your list.

There’s also a really cool aquarium you can visit in about 2 hours. I’d skip it if you’re just doing a day trip, but I’d definitely do it if you have two days in the park.

Finally, there’s also a waterpark you can visit during the warmer months. Again, I’d skip it for a day trip but it would be worth doing if you had two days.

5. It’s About an Hour from San Diego

As you’re working on your LEGOLAND trip, it’s helpful to know that it’s about an hour’s drive from the San Diego Airport. And it can be even longer with traffic.

So, consider that when you are booking your flights. And you might consider expanding your San Diego itinerary to include a few days in town.

If you take an early morning flight, you might be able to get to LEGOLAND right as it’s opening (or close to it) so you could drop your bags at the hotel and go play.

It’s also pretty easy to do almost a full day at LEGOLAND and then take an evening flight, as long as you account for the drive to the airport.

6. What to Wear to LEGOLAND

If you are used to doing Disney vacations, you probably are wondering if people do the matching family shirts for LEGOLAND or dress up in any way.

Image of a mom and two boys taking a selfie in front of a LEGO dragon at LEGOLAND California.

We usually see a handful of families with custom family LEGO shirts. I’ve also seen really cute LEGO dresses. But, these are definitely the minority.

Usually, you’ll see kids wearing something LEGO-related (like a shirt they bought at Target) pants/shorts , and athletic shoes .

For adults, people tend to wear jeans or “comfy” clothing like athleisurewear and athletic shoes .

You’ll also see a lot of hats to block the sun and sunglasses . And people wear sweatshirts or jackets on cooler days.

7. What to Bring to LEGOLAND

It’s helpful to bring a backpack to LEGOLAND with a few essentials. Sunscreen is helpful because so much of the park is in the open air.

I also recommend bringing some drinks and snacks . Most of the food options don’t open when the park opens, which can leave you scrambling with little kids who are hungry.

Image of a boy looking at a plastic case filled with LEGO minifigures.

You’ll also want to bring LEGO minifigures with you to trade inside the park. They have little plastic cases with minifigures at most of the stores so you can trade with staff members. Just be sure that your LEGO minifigure has all the body parts.

8. Best Rides at LEGOLAND CA

One of the best rides at LEGOLAND California is the new Emmet’s Flying Adventure Ride . It’s basically like Soarin’ Over California at Disneyland, but it’s all about LEGO creations and it’s seriously amazing!

legoland san diego field trip

For thrill rides, The Dragon is a great beginner rollercoaster and the Coastasaurus is one step up from that.

The Driving School (and the Junior Driving School ) is a fun place where kids can actually drive a little car on roads through a little town. And they get their own driver’s license at the end.

For interactive rides, LEGO Ninjago The Ride is pretty fun. You use your arms to throw things at bad guys at screens (sort of like Web Slingers at Disney California Adventure). And Lost Kingdom Adventure is where you shoot laser guns at targets (sort of like Buzz Lightyear).

9. What to Eat or Drink at LEGOLAND

One of the best snacks at LEGOLAND is Granny’s Apple Fries . These are fries made out of Granny Smith apples and rolled in sugar and cinnamon. They come in a portable container with whipped cream for dipping.

Image of a container of apple fries and whipped cream in front of the Granny's Apple Fries store at LEGOLAND California.

For “real food” I recommend checking out Knights’ Smokehouse BBQ or the Pizza and Pasta Buffet .

If your family drinks a lot of soda, you might want to buy the LEGOLAND California refillable cups . You pay for the cup and then each refill is less than $2. This saves a lot of money to do it this way versus paying for soda everywhere you go.

Anything to avoid?

I’m from Seattle and I only drink “fancy” coffee. I hate to say it, but the coffee options at LEGOLAND totally suck. It all tastes like drip coffee. The same goes for the coffee at the LEGOLAND hotels.

10. They Will Hold Your Purchases

There are several LEGO stores throughout the park and there’s a good chance someone will see something they want.

Image of two boys posing with LEGO Harry Potter characters and the Sorting Hat inside the Big Shop at LEGOLAND California.

While I usually recommend that people wait to buy stuff until the end of the day so they can just bring it back to their hotel, sometimes the items are no longer in stock. This happened to us with a specific LEGO sword.

The cool thing is that you can actually have the store hang on to your purchases so you can continue your day without holding bags. And they will even bring it to the park exit!

LEGOLAND California for Toddlers

If you’re traveling to LEGOLAND with toddlers, you’ll definitely want to read my Guide to LEGOLAND with Toddlers. We all know that traveling with toddlers has its own struggles and doing a theme park with toddlers is different than with older kids.

Tips for LEGOLAND California Wrap Up

I hope this post helps you plan your perfect LEGOLAND California vacation! It’s one of our favorite family vacation destinations! Keep scrolling to read more articles about LEGOLAND California!

Looking for more LEGOLAND California travel resources? Check out this LEGOLAND Castle Hotel Review , LEGOLAND Hotel Adventure Room Review , LEGOLAND CA tips , LEGOLAND packing list , Disneyland vs LEGOLAND , Why LEGOLAND Might Not Be Fun for Parents: And How to Turn It Around best hotels near LEGOLAND California , 13 Ways to Visit LEGOLAND on a Budget , and tips for LEGOLAND with toddlers !

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Legoland Discovery Center Bay Area

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11 Awesome Tips For Field Trips To LEGOLAND Discovery Center

  • Wednesday 3 rd October 2018
  • LEGOLAND Discovery Center Michigan

Kids Building | LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago

Once the initial back to school glow wears off and your students have fallen into the early-October haze, it can be hard to zap some life back into them! But, we know two words that will awaken their tired souls and send them into an excitable, educational frenzy….   FIELD TRIP! We know that planning field trips can come with the added bonus of causing you, the teacher, a mini-brick of anxiety. Pulling everything off without a hitch can seem overwhelming, right? Don’t feel discouraged! We've worked with teachers like you to put together these 11 top tips to eliminate the guesswork and make you a field trip superstar!

School Bus| LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago

1. Plan! Plan! Plan! (Ahead!) Start the process at least six weeks in advance. We recommend calling to reserve your preferred date as early as possible because spots fill up fast! Keep in mind that full payment is due before your visit date, so get that check request in to the administration office ASAP!

2. Send Permission Slips… Like, now! Act early so you can finalize your attendance numbers and update your reservation accordingly. Be sure to have parents include emergency contact info and allergy concerns on their permission slips and bring them on the day of your trip for easy reference.

3. Secure Your Chaperones We require at least one chaperone for every five students but encourage you to bring as many “big kids” as you’d like. The more the merrier, after all! Try starting a parent sign-up list at least four weeks in advance (they’ll thank you for inviting them).

Homeschool Week | LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago

4. Schedule a FREE Teacher Preview Make an appointment with one of our knowledgeable field trip planners to   see what’s inside the Ultimate Indoor LEGO® Playground ! It’s your opportunity to learn how the Discovery Center’s many educational aspects like the Earthquake Tables, LEGO Racers: Build & Test ramps, MINILAND® and more will fit into your curriculum. Recommended 3-4 weeks in advance.

5. Supplement Your Visit Once you’ve seen what’s inside, create worksheets or scavenger hunts for your students that focus on concepts they’re learning in class. Be sure to bring enough pencils and clipboards! Educational Activities We L-O-V-E: -Exploring the mean, median and mode of your students’ Kingdom Quest Laser Ride scores -Finding the perimeter and area of buildings in LEGO Friends: Heartlake City -Collaborating to build the tallest (and strongest!) tower at the Earthquake Tables -Analyzing how different race car components affect a car’s speed in LEGO Racers: Build & Test -Creating an accurate map of MINILAND including a key, compass rose and other cartographic elements

Building LEGO | LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago

6. Add a LEGO Education Workshop Get even MORE educational value out of your visit with one of our awesome workshops, designed by LEGO Education AND real teachers to support state standards. Topics range from science and engineering to language arts!

Miniland Construction | LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago

7. Review Local Landmarks MINILAND is one of the most BRICK-tacular areas of LEGOLAND Discovery Center, not only because it’s made of MILLIONS of LEGO bricks, but also because it features dozens of your local landmarks. Take some time to familiarize your students with the history of the places around them before you come so they will be amazed and delighted by the attention to detail! Recommended one week in advance.

8. Remind Your Kiddos to Bring Socks! While everything from our interactive rides and 4D Cinema to LEGO Friends: Heartlake City is indoors, some of our mind-bopping play structures require socks to be worn. This is especially important during flip flop season and for those in warm-weather climates… we’re looking at you LEGOLAND Discovery Center Arizona!

Tshirts | LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago

9. Nametags are the Bomb Dot Com Not only are they great for helping your chaperones remember names, they also help identify students as part of your group.

*PRO TIP: Have t-shirts made that all of your kids wear for EXTRA noticeability!

10. Don’t Forget: Itineraries for Your Chaperones Set a schedule for the day and email it to the adults who will be attending the field trip with you. Include your cell phone number, the time they should arrive at the school, the time the bus leaves for LEGOLAND Discovery Center, workshop times (if applicable), lunch, departure time, etc.!

11. Get Ready for LEGO FUN FUN FUN! Plan to arrive about 15 minutes before your entry time. Once inside the building, have your students line up along the wall outside our Admissions area. Then, bring your order confirmation number up to the desk to check in. Our friendly staff will take over from there!

Now that you’re in-the-know, we can’t wait for your class to come build with us! For more information about booking your field trip, LEGO Education Workshops, standards met and more, visit your local LEGOLAND Discovery Center online.


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How to Make a Reservation Using a Pass or Non-Dated Ticket:


Check our Operating Calendar for Dates.

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Visit our Reservations Portal and follow the steps to complete your reservation. You’ll need to select a visit date and enter a pass ID, ticket ID, or ticket barcode.

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Check your email! Your reservation confirmation will be emailed to you. This is what you’ll show when you arrive at the gate along with your valid admission ticket or pass.

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Helpful hint! Use the Wallet Feature in the official LEGOLAND App to add your reservation and pass or ticket. This is the easiest way to stay organized and access your required items.

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On your date of visit- you’ll show your reservation confirmation along with your valid admission ticket or pass.

Need to access or modify an existing reservation?

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SoCal Field Trips

3 Reasons To Book a LEGO Friends Room at The LEGOLAND Hotel

This post may contain affiliate links.


Field Trip Girl’s birthday is not until this summer, but I have already decided where I am going to take her to celebrate her special day!  I am going to reserve one of the new LEGO ®  Hotel Friends fully themed rooms at the LEGOLAND ®  Hotel at the LEGOLAND ® California Resort in Carlsbad.

3 Reasons To Book a LEGO Friends Themed Room at the LEGOLAND Hotel

#1 – Your family can discover Heartlake City in a whole new way!

Take an adventure with your family and discover the full joy of LEGO ® Friends Heartlake City !  On March 10, 2016, guests can begin their LEGOLAND California Resort adventure by spending the night in the newly themed rooms all before heading into the Park to enjoy a day at the LEGO ® Friends Heartlake City itself.


LEGO Friends Heartlake City comes complete with Mia’s Riding Camp , a 62 horse and jeep carousel ready to take guests on an adventure, the Heartlake Fountain where children can splash about and the Heartlake Stables ready for LEGO building activities.   Your family can sing along with the LEGO Friends on the Friends Forever Stage  all before enjoying delicious crêpes at the City Park Crêperie.  Now your family can experience the excitement of  LEGO ® Friends from sun up to sun down!


#2 – Your child can spend the night with their favorite LEGO ® Friends character!

Filled with 12 LEGO ® models inspired by Heartlake City throughout each of the 11 rooms and one suite, your child can spend the night with one or more of their favorite LEGO ® Friends characters –  Emma , Mia , Andrea , Stephanie and Olivia .  As a hotel guest, they will get their own TV, games, bright colored LEGO bricks and a treasure chest hidden just beneath their LEGO themed tree!


Parents can also sleep in style with their own themed version of Heartlake City Stables and families can enjoy getting ready for their day at the Park in Stephanie’s Beach House themed restrooms.

#3 – Your child can visit with their favorite LEGO ® Friends pet characters!

Your child will recognize Goldie the Bird, Scarlett the Dog and Felix the Cat in LEGO form as they enjoy sleeping in bunk and trundle beds themed as the Friends Tree House .  LEGO ® Friends   love hanging out with their guests in the treetop retreat, playing games and camp out under the stars!


Recently recognized by TripAdvisor as a 2016 Traveler’s Choice winner, the LEGO Friends rooms at the LEGOLAND Hotel are available to book now!

LEGOLAND ® California Resort Discount Tickets

Be sure to buy the park-hopper passes as there are three parks to visit and you’ll need at least two days to see them all.  Better yet, if you plan to visit other destinations in San Diego, I recommend that you get the Go San Diego Card to save even more money!

Plus don’t forget to check out the new The LEGO Movie™ 4D A New Adventure  now playing at LEGOLAND.  It’s awesome!

Happy Field Tripping!


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  6. LEGOLAND® California

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  7. MINILAND San Diego

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