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11 Tips to Make the Most of Your Time at LEGOLAND California

by Leap on January 7, 2015 63 San Diego   Video

Just a hop, skip and a jump from San Diego in beautiful Carlsbad, LEGOLAND California is a budding brick-builder's paradise. The whole park is themed around the colorful LEGO bricks, which you'll find oversized on rides, pieced together for fantastic photo ops and assembled in models throughout the park as well as the entire section of Miniland, which offers LEGOized reproductions of seven areas of the United States. That's 20 million LEGO bricks in that one section alone!

LEGOLAND California tips - Miniland

If you're always stepping on stray LEGOs around the house, then you already know this is a place you should go. But even if you're little ones aren'y yet hard-core LEGO devotees, they will still have a blast because everything in the park is geared for ages 2-12. The park is the ultimate little playground, but it can get very crowded, especially during the summer months. We've put together these LEGOLAND California tips so that you can make the most of your day in the park. Now, we are talking about making the most of your time, but be prepared for your kids to find at least one place in the park they love and don't want to leave like the Land of Adventure. Let them go at their own pace and enjoy the sights and attractions! You can come back a second day ;)

Here are top LEGOLAND California tips to make the most your time:

1. Buy your tickets in advance.

You will save money and time if you purchase your tickets in advance, since you can find great discounts and you won't have to stand in line at Will Call.

2. Pick the best times to visit. 

LEGOLAND California is busiest during the summer time and the holidays. Basically, whenever the kids are out of school you can expect major crowds.

3. Stay onsite. 

LEGOLAND California tips - LEGOLAND Hotel

The LEGOLAND Hotel is just as well-themed as the park, and it's located right there inside the resort. It offers fantastically themed rooms (Adventure! Kingdom! Pirates!), plenty of hands-on LEGO activities and a zero-entry heated pool for year-round play. Plus, hotel guests get early admission into the park!

4. Measure up the little ones before you hit the park.

LEGOLAND California tips - Dune Raiders

All of the rides in the park are geared toward tadpoles between 2 and 12 years old, but more than half of the attractions have height requirements of some kind. It helps to know in advance which rides your little one will be able to ride, and especially which ones they will be able to ride without a grownup. Also know that a handful of rides — Junior Driving School, Driving School, Cargo Ace and Lego Mindstorms — have age requirements.

5. Pack an extra set of clothes or have the kids wear their bathing suits. 

Even if you aren't headed to the water park, there are a few splash and play areas. If you have little ones who love to play in the water, but don't like walking around soggy, you'll want something they can change into.

6. Bring your own water. 

Coolers are not allowed, but guests can bring in their own water and any food or beverages required for specific dietary needs.

7. Go early!

The early bird gets the LEGO! The turnstiles open a half hour to an hour ahead of the park's opening depending on the season, with select rides open early. For the lowest crowds, arrive ahead of the park's opening and you'll be in in no time.

8. Head to the water park early. 

LEGOLAND California tips - Water Park

You'll avoid the biggest lines to get into LEGOLAND California's Water Park if you arrive before 11 a.m. or after 3 p.m. The Water Park opens March 7 in time for Spring Break and runs through Sept. 7, 2015!

9. Ride Sky Cruiser first thing.

Aboard these pedal-powered cars, you can take in the sights of Fun Town from an elevated track. This is the park's most popular ride, so make it your first stop of the day or ride it right before closing.

10. Start in the back. 

LEGOLAND California tips - Coastersaurus

If you arrive early, start in the back of the park and work your way back to the front. Lines build early for Coastersaurus, Safari Trek and Fairy Tale Brook, but there is usually less of a wait in the afternoon.

11. Don't skip the aquarium!

LEGOLAND California is home to the Sea Life Aquarium, where you can see jellyfish, rays, sharks and octopus up close!  There is a touch pool for little hands to reach out and touch sea stars and crabs, and feeding times are posted so you can watch and learn from the animal experts.

For your little ones, you can't go wrong with a visit to LEGOLAND California! We hope you've enjoyed our LEGOLAND California tips to help you make the most of your time at the park. Have a tip we didn't mention? Share it in comments below!

Hoppy planning!

Leap

Keep hopping, Leap!
View Comments
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Jun 10, 2017 at 8:32 p.m. Esther Says...

Planning a visit to legoland on Wednesday or Thursday June 14 or 15. Are the crowds pretty heavy at this time?

Reply
Jun 11, 2017 at 6:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Esther,

Looking at our San Diego Crowd Calendar, we're forecasting heavy crowds on June 14 and 15.

Keep Hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 10, 2017 at 2:49 a.m. Leannder Says...

Hi,

I am bringing my ten year old son for his first time to Legoland in July. Do you feel that Legoland is done justice in one whole day or do you advise us to go for two days? We do want to go to the Waterpark. Also, it is unclear if the Aquarium is just part of the regular admission to the park. Is this extra cost? Thank you for taking the time to answer my question.

Reply
Jun 11, 2017 at 6:03 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Leannder,

Both the water park and Sea Life Aquarium are add-ons to the regular one-day ticket. If you plan on spending a significant amount of time in the water park, then we would recommend two days. That way you will not have to rush your time with the LEGOLAND shows and rides.

Keep Hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 19, 2017 at 3:55 a.m. Paul Says...

Hello,

thinking about being spontaneous and going to LEGOLAND this weekend, but having some reservations because it is Memorial Day weekend. Do you have any idea how crowded it might be?

Reply
May 19, 2017 at 8:07 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Paul,

Peeking at our San Diego Crowd Calendar, we're forecasting heavy crowds at LEGOLAND that weekend.

Keep Hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 17, 2017 at 12:19 a.m. Rick Says...

Travelling to legoland California on may 18, we have never been, taking a 4 year old and a 7year old. Both are huge lego fans and they love aquariums. We have one day to take in all we can. Swimming is very low on the priority list so we won't do the water park. What advice can you give to rookie theme park tourists to get the best experience. We won't be staying at the park either.....

Reply
Apr 17, 2017 at 7:55 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rick,

Besides the information in the article, we suggest going over the LEGOLAND Website with your kids to see what they would be interested in. Show them the rides and activities and gauge their interest. Knowing what they want to see will help you have a better experience.

Keep Hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 13, 2017 at 5:38 a.m. Pam Says...

Hi Im going to legoland California June 2017, Is it best to book on weekdays or weekend. What's the height requirements on waterpark my kids are 10 and 11. Is it possible to finish the park hopper in one day?

Reply
Apr 13, 2017 at 8:12 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Pam,

Weekends are typically busier than weekdays.

Height Requirements vary between none to 36" to 42"

It's possible to do everything in one day but that depends on wait times and how long you decide to spend in the water parks. Two days would give you a less hurried pace.

Keep Hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 21, 2017 at 8:02 p.m. Aaron Says...

We are planning a trip to San Diego for 7 days. We are planning to bring our twins (age 4) to experience Legoland and the Water park in one day. Traveling May 27th- June 3rd . Any recommendation on what day would best to spend at the park ?

Reply
Mar 22, 2017 at 8:23 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Aaron,

Peeking at our San Diego Crowd Calendar, it looks like May 30-June 3 would be your best timeframe for a visit.

Keep Hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 13, 2017 at 5:47 p.m. Elizabeth Says...

Hi we're planning on going to legoland and wanted to know what day is less crowded. Sunday April 9 or good friday April 14?

Reply
Mar 13, 2017 at 1:08 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Elizabeth,

We're forecasting high crowds at LEGOLAND California on both of those days due to spring break. Check out our Crowd Calendar for more information.

Keep Hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 17, 2017 at 8:59 p.m. Amy Says...

We are visiting on March 6th - lines should be short, right? Where can I get a comprehensive list of the rides and their height requirements. I am going with a 4 and 8 year old - so need to plan. Thanks!!

Reply
Jan 18, 2017 at 8:18 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Amy,

On our Crowd Calendar, we're forecasting average crowds at LEGOLAND that day.

Here's a link to pdf of all of LEGOLAND's attractions and their height requirements.

Keep Hopping!

Leap

Reply
Nov 2, 2016 at 12:50 p.m. Stephanie Says...

How are the crowds on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day?

Reply
Nov 8, 2016 at 2:03 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Stephanie,

The park will be very busy on these days.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 24, 2016 at 7:26 p.m. Shelly Says...

Hi, we will be visiting The second week of October. Will this be a very busy time, as well I am wondering what to expect weather wise?

Reply
Aug 26, 2016 at 1:16 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Shelly,

Because of the Columbus Day holiday and because almost all of Arizona's schools are off that week, that week is most likely the most crowded week of October. But not to worry, the park will be decorated for Halloween, and if you follow our tips to maximize your time you will still be able to get it all done. That week is often very hot, but that an be inconsistent. Last year the temperatures were in the 100s that week, but you should check the weather before you leave so that you know how to pack. Even hot days can turn into cool nights in Southern California, so having a sweatshirt to put on is recommended.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 16, 2016 at 8:34 p.m. Tanya Says...

Hi! Thanks for this great resource! We are planning on going in February. It looks like the water park will be closed during that time- is it still worth it to go in the winter? I see there are other water-y attractions, are those all shut down then too? We don't want to shortchange our kids (4 and 6), but were hoping to go then.

Also, do you know if the hotel has a shuttle to/from the closest airport? This is the only place we are planning on going for this trip, so don't need a car.

Thanks for any other tips!

Reply
Aug 25, 2016 at 11:15 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tanya,

Even if the water park is closed, there is a large water play area at the Pirate Reef area at the back of the park. It is perfect your your kids' ages. Your kids will have a blast running around the water play structure and spraying each other with water or riding Splash Battle, where you are guaranteed a good soaking. They can also spray the people riding Splash Battle. There are changing rooms and family sized dryers. Pack a swimsuit and towel. It will still be a great time without the water park. You will enjoy the very themed Legoland Hotel right down to the elevator ride to your room. They have a heated pool, but they do not have an airport shuttle. We recommend Super Shuttle.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Aug 10, 2016 at 5:52 p.m. tricia Says...

We are wanting to bring my son there Sept. 17-19 for a short weekend trip. Is this a good or bad weekend? What is one of the best weekends , for a short trip to bring my 11 yr. old? We feel he is about to outgrow Legoland and want to get there before that happens. We are on an extremely tight budget . Any suggestions on money saving tips?

Reply
Aug 17, 2016 at 12:56 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Tricia,

This should be a great weekend to visit Legoland. September is still usually very hot in San Diego, so we recommend buying a ticket that includes the waterpark in advance to save money and get a bonus extra day.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 30, 2016 at 12:46 a.m. NorCal Says...

We'll be staying at Legoland Hotel the week of Aug. 15. We're wondering whether VIP experience is worth it or just purchase Reserve n Ride. Both seems to offer "no wait in line", which is what we really want. Our kid is 3 years old (41 inches tall) and I have foot issues, so trying to limit the waiting in line time as much as possible. Would love to hear what you think we should opt for.

Reply
Aug 9, 2016 at 12:35 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

You can probably do just fine with Reserve n Ride. While waiting for your ride time, there are many Lego building areas, playgrounds, video game areas, and water play areas throughout the park where you can sit and your child can play, rather than standing in line.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 10, 2016 at 9 p.m. Ellie Says...

Torn between a 2 or 3 day pass to Legoland (and the 2 other locations). This will be the first time for all 3 of us (6 year old boy and parents). We'll land in the late am and can probably go to the acquarium, first day. Second day, all day at Legoland. Third day at water park and anything we miss at legoland? Does that make sense or can we do everyting in one day? Thanks!

Reply
Jul 18, 2016 at 10:22 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Ellie,

We recommend our Park Hopper (which gives you a second day free). The aquarium only takes an hour to visit, so you could do that and definitely get in some other rides in the park. Then do the water park and the rest of Legoland the second day.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 10, 2016 at 1:13 a.m. Gloria Says...

We are planning to go any of these days in July, with 3 kids 12, 6 and 1, when do you recommend us to go and do you think it will be better not taking the 1 year old with us? First time going.

Thank you

Reply
Jul 18, 2016 at 10:21 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Gloria,

If you have a babysitter, you will move a lot faster and will be able to go a lot longer without managing a 1-year-old. If you take the 1-year-old take advantage of child switch

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 18, 2016 at 10:21 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Gloria,

If you have a babysitter, you will move a lot faster and will be able to go a lot longer without managing a 1-year-old. If you take the 1-year-old take advantage of child switch

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 22, 2016 at 1:17 a.m. Alli Says...

We're taking our kids to Legoland the week of August 15th. We'll go on a weekday. Do you think it's worth it to upgrade to the Reserve n Ride express or deluxe? Don't want to pay as much as they are asking for the ultimate. Thanks!

Reply
Jul 18, 2016 at 10:17 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Alli,

I would arrive early and hit your favorite attractions in the morning. You can add on if you think you need it later, but I would not reserve in advance because you night not need it.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 13, 2016 at 10:39 p.m. First Timer Says...

I'm planning out first trip the Wednesday after Labor day- just two days after the holiday. What is the foot traffic like around then? Any tips on finding discounts on tickets?

Reply
Jul 5, 2016 at 1:36 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

Crowds should be light at that time. Here are our discounts on LEGOLAND California tickets and other San Diego attractions:

https://www.undercovertourist.com/san-diego/

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 13, 2016 at 4:50 p.m. Rubby Says...

I'm planning on taking my daughter to the park on her birthday Sunday July 10. Will the wait time be long? Will that be enough time to cover the park and the aquarium? Thank you!

Reply
Jul 18, 2016 at 10:13 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rubby,

That is in the middle of summer so wait times can be longer than usual. Try to arrive before park opening to get the shortest lines in the morning and then visit the aquarium in the early afternoon when rides are long and the sun is hot. The aquarium takes not more than an hour to go through.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jun 8, 2016 at 7:42 p.m. Lynne Says...

We are going Thu & Fri the last week of July. Are the reserve a ride ones worth it? If so, is the $25/day not really worth it and we need to do $55 or $100?

Reply
Jul 18, 2016 at 10:11 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Lynne,

I would arrive at the park early (before it opens) and hit your most important important rides first. Then decide if you think you need to reserve a ride. You may not need it.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
May 11, 2016 at 8:12 p.m. SN Says...

Is Legoland typically busy around beginning of June? We are thinking of going June 3rd.

Reply
May 17, 2016 at 3:07 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi SN,

It's a fairly good time to go, since many kids aren't yet out of school and families are still winding down from the school year. Pick a weekday if you can.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 11, 2016 at 4:09 p.m. Rachel Says...

Hi,

We are planning to goto legoland at the end of August (Sunday the 21st and Monday the 22nd). Thoughts on the crowds and if purchasing the reserve a ride is necessary. Our kids are 5 and 7. We are staying in the hotel Monday and Tuesday night as well.

Thanks

Reply
Apr 25, 2016 at 12:46 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Rachel,

This is not a super busy time as many kids have returned to school or parents are focused on getting the kids ready to go back.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Apr 4, 2016 at 1:34 a.m. Janet h Says...

Hi We will be visiting the area and we have the option to go to lego land sun April 24 with longer hrs or Monday April 25 with shorter hours. I was voting for extra hours but other tend to think the extra time will be spent waiting in line and not really give us more ride time. What are your thoughts?

Reply
Apr 25, 2016 at 11:36 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Janet,

If you are planning on attending the water park at LEGOLAND, then going on a Sunday will give you more time to do it all. If you are attending just the amusement park, you can probably do it all in shorter hours with much shorter lines on a Monday. Either day you should not expect terribly huge crowds at this time of year. And many lines have Lego building areas to help pass the time line as more play and build time.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Mar 22, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. Nicole Says...

Wanting to take kids mar. 24 & 25th. How crowded do u think it will be?

Reply
Mar 28, 2016 at 9:45 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Nicole,

Sorry for the delay. Did you make it to the parks? How busy were the parks? We expect they would have been fairly busy.

Hoppy planning!

Mommy Frog

Reply
Mar 17, 2016 at 5:35 a.m. Brenda Says...

We are planning to be in town Monday April 11 to Friday April 15th. Which day would be the least busy out of those? We are bringing our 4-year-old and she won't have the stamina for waiting in long lines...

Reply
Mar 30, 2016 at 10:26 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Brenda,

Since you will be visiting during the week, any of the days should be great, but LEGOLAND seems to be the least crowded on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. The park is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day that week. The best strategy is to arrive at 9:30 a.m. on a Tuesday or Wednesday, and you will have no wait to very short waits for the first two hours. You should not see any really long lines those days, but if you do encounter some lines, focus on the the many playgrounds, building areas, and water play areas, which do not have lines at all. Some of the lines have building play areas right there in the line, so kids can play while the parents wait in the line. The line wraps around the play area and allows parents to keep an eye on their kid at all times.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 1, 2016 at 8:32 a.m. Amber Says...

Hello, we will be visiting Cali in a few weeks and will be going for the first time! We are going Monday Feb. 15th.2016, Presidents Day. do you know how busy it gets? Possible attraction estimated wait times? Thank you!

Reply
Feb 2, 2016 at 9:03 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Amber,

Expect very heavy crowds. You might want to check out this post as well:

https://www.undercovertourist.com/blog/building-perfect-day-legoland-california/

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Feb 9, 2016 at 7:18 p.m. Amber Says...

I meant 10am to 5pm

Reply
Feb 9, 2016 at 7:16 p.m. Amber Says...

Hello, we will not be going Monday anymore we will be going Wednesday Feb. 17th! I seen that Legoland is normally closed Tuesday Wednesdays, but is open all week that week. Any particular reason? Also, why is the park only open 10pm to 5pm is that enough time to get through everything including the aquarium? Look forward to hearing back from you, thank you!

Reply
Feb 10, 2016 at 1:26 p.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Amber,

The park is opened seasonally at this time based on crowd levels. That should give you enough time to do most everything at the park, but ideally you'd have another day to experience the aquarium.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jan 10, 2016 at 8:25 a.m. Dana Says...

Hello I have 3 children I will be taking for their first time, and I'm on a budget. Where can I get the best discounts and when is park the very least busy? ? Thanks

Reply
Jul 8, 2016 at 8:59 p.m. dmar29 Says...

if you subscribe your children to recieve ther free lego club magazine, those come with coupons for the children. defitnitly worth looking at if your on a budget.

Reply
Jan 11, 2016 at 7:22 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi Dana,

We offer some terrific discounts for LEGOLAND California. Check them out:

https://www.undercovertourist.com/san-diego/legoland-california/

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Sep 16, 2015 at 6:47 a.m. Susana Says...

Hello I'm planning to take my son for his Bday in Nov however I'm contemplating waiting until Dec for the Holiday event, do you think it's worth the wait? Or is it pretty much the same only w some snow?

This will be our first time going. Thank you.

Reply
Nov 3, 2016 at 1:06 a.m. Janel Holaday Says...

Hi Susana:

My son's birthday is in November, too. We're thinking of going to Legoland. Did you get to go last November? If so, please share your experience. A site I saw said it is the least busy time of year to go. Thanks!

Reply
Aug 18, 2015 at 3:03 a.m. KJG Says...

Are the VIP line passes worth it? How are the crowds the weekend before Thanksgiving?

Reply
Aug 25, 2015 at 8:07 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

It is always great to have skip-the-line access, but worth it is subjective. For that weekend before Thanksgiving, it won't be nearly as crowded as the following weekend, and I don't think the upgrade is absolutely necessary.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
Jul 8, 2015 at 4:37 a.m. HNJ Says...

Any tips on summer discounts for the hotel? Off season rates are like $180/night and during the summer it is more like $460/night!

Reply
Jul 22, 2015 at 9:08 a.m. FrogBlog Says...

Hi there,

As I am sure you are aware, summer hotel discounts are much harder to come by. I recommend you check the hotel site for discounts, I currently see one available. When there are none, I look at my options such as making sure I am putting it on a credit card that offers points or even paying with points.

Keep hopping!

Leap

Reply
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