When I told my readers that I was going to Legoland Florida as part of a press trip with Visit Florida, and asked them what they wanted to know, the most frequent answer was…is Legoland worth it? I can understand the question and that is why I decided to write this Legoland Florida review.
With mega-theme parks like Disney World and Universal Orlando nearby, we get accustomed to the best-of-the-best when it comes to theming, rides and entertainment on a family vacation. So if you want my short answer, then yes…Legoland is totally worth it.
IF (you knew there was a “but” or an “if” in there, right?)…you are Lego fans, you aren’t looking for big thrill rides, you are doing other things the area, and your kids are between the ages of 2-12 (see the best theme parks for toddlers and preschoolers.) Let me explain.
What is the best age for Legoland?
Note: My trip was hosted by Visit Florida. We received free admission and meals from Legoland Florida and Visit Central Florida and complimentary lodging at the Holiday Inn Winterhaven for purposes of this review. All opinions are my own. The featured image is courtesy of Summer Gonzalez-Mendez.
Legoland Florida promotes itself for families with children ages two to twelve, but when I heard that I thought…why? After all, everyone loves Legos, even older kids right? My 12 year-old adores building with Legos, surely she would love a trip to Legoland…right?
Well after visiting the park I’d have to say that the ideal age is likely 4-8, when they are old enough to enjoy rides and an amusement park, but young enough that they aren’t looking for thrill rides. But as with all things, it is all about setting the right expectations.
If your twelve-year old has already moved on to the “big” roller coasters and can’t get enough excitement, they will likely be disappointed with the thrills at Legoland. However, if you are a big chicken like me, then the coasters are just perfect — thrilling enough but not pee-your-pants terrifying.
If your three-year old is still scared by anything more than the choo-choo train, then you are also in luck. There are a number of rides designed just for the little kiddos, especially over in Duplo Valley.
What sorts of rides are at Legoland Florida?
Legoland does its best to offer something for everyone at Legoland Florida. First of all, they try to bring in all your favorite Lego characters…from the Lego Friends in Heartlake City “land”, to Lego Kingdoms, Chima, and the Lego Ninjago World.
Even the water skiers in the show are dressed as Lego guys (how they ski in those outfits, I have no idea.)
There are four coasters: Coastersaurus, The Dragon, Project X and Flying School. None of these are super-scary…even though I admit to only riding the Coastersaurus, an old-fashioned wooden coaster.
Some of the “good for anyone” rides include the Island in the Sky, which just slowly goes up and turns around to provide a bird’s eye view of the park; The Grand Carousel, a two-level carousel; the Lost Kingdom Adventure, which is similar to the rides at Legoland Discovery Centers where you ride through a track on a cart and shoot at targets; and the Quest for Chi.
There are other rides that seem appealing, but adults and big kids may actually be too large for, like the Ford Driving School. Still others are in that middle range where budding thrill seekers may love them, like Mia’s Riding Adventure, which swings back and forth and gets me a bit nauseous just looking at it.
In addition to the rides, there are other attractions and shows, including some character meet and greets. I mentioned the water skiing show, but another fan favorite is Miniland.
Just like at the Legoland Discovery Centers, but much larger, this section of the park is dedicated to Lego creations of local and national landmarks. Some of the Florida landmarks include Kennedy Space Center and Daytona race track, but there are also landmarks from California, Las Vegas, New York, Washington DC and more…all built out of Legos.
And it isn’t just landmarks that you will see built out of Legos, throughout the park you will find dinosaurs, dragons, characters, historical figures and even cars, all made out of Legos with signs to tell you how many blocks and how many hours it took to create these masterpieces.
There are also splash areas, playgrounds, and much more to explore including the old Cypress Gardens. Legoland is Central Florida’s newest theme park, but it is built on the site of its oldest, Cypress Gardens.
To maintain that history, the park still encompasses a botanical garden area with cypress and banyan trees and plenty of greenery to escape from the heat of the theme park pavement.
The signs did warn about the possibility of alligators though, so I would say to stay alert if you choose to walk through the gardens. Altogether, there is plenty to keep a family with kids in the target age bracket busy for a day, especially if you add in the waterpark.
Legoland Florida’s waterpark is a separate park from Legoland park with its own admission ticket. However, Legoland’s waterpark is only available to guests of Legoland Florida Resort. (See other Orlando water parks.)
In other words, you can’t just go to the waterpark and not the theme park. If you are visiting in the summer, I’d highly recommend adding in the water park and spending a few hours cooling off there in the afternoon.
Here you will find two big slides, three medium slides, a lazy river, a wave pool, and a giant play structure and splash area. We also found plenty of lounge chairs around (even some in the shade), as well as lockers and changing rooms.
What about playing with Legos?
If you are a Lego fan, you are going to want to do some building. For that, head over to the Imagination Zone where there are plenty of play areas for Lego building and more. Plus, it is indoors so you can cool off in the air conditioning.
Kids can check out Lego Mindstorms to start learning basic programming. There is also the Warner Bros. Game Zone with all the latest Lego video games, and then Water, Wheels, and Flight Zones for building sea creatures, things on wheels and things that fly. Kids could spend hours in here!
True Lego fans will not be disappointed with the theming at Legoland Florida. Everywhere you turn, you are amazed by another Lego masterpiece from R2D2 to Einstein made of Lego bricks. Don’t just think of it as a theme park where it is all about the rides…think of it as a playground for Lego fans.
How long should you stay at Legoland?
You can definitely do Legoland in a day. If you really want to delight your Lego fan, then go for two days but don’t plan on more than that…otherwise you might be pulling your hair out.
Where should you stay?
Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission.
There are a few Legoland hotel options. If you can afford it, splurge for one of the themed rooms right next door at the Legoland Hotel. After a quick tour through the hotel, I want to go back just to bring Hannah and stay at the hotel. It is super cute and doesn’t miss a beat when it comes to theming.
Downstairs is a Lego pit, meet and greets with Lego characters, and family-friendly dining…that is if you can pull yourself away from staring at the massive collection of Mini figures behind the check in desk.
But head upstairs and have a disco party in the elevator…I mean seriously…shouldn’t every hotel have a disco ball in the elevator and a whoopie cushion to fart around with while you are waiting? Each floor has a different theme and those themes are carried down the hall and into the rooms…including pirate, kingdoms, adventure, and Lego Friends rooms.
There are also “Bed and Brick” partner hotels, with room packages that include tickets to the park. We stayed at the Holiday Inn Winterhaven, which also offers free transportation to the park, saving you $17 on parking! It was a comfortable hotel with great rates for budget travelers.
The resort has also recently opened the Legoland Beach Retreat, which sits on Lake Dexter. This resort has 83 single-story duplex units, offering 166 separate accommodations that sleep up to five and includes a shuttle to the theme park.
In 2020, Legoland Orlando will open a new hotel, the Legoland Pirate Island Hotel. The hotel will offer 150 pirate-themed rooms, a pool, and a boat-load of interactive activities.
All the Legoland hotels offer a free breakfast but be sure to save room for the delicious apple fries in the park!
What else can you do near Legoland Florida?
I was surprised to learn that Central Florida has been rated the 16th best golf destination in the country and is the large mouth bass fishing capital of the world! There is plenty to do for families in this area, including the Safari Wilderness Ranch, rodeos, and the only dude ranch in Florida, the Westgate River Ranch Resort. Plus, let’s not forget that Orlando is only 45 minutes away.
PIN THIS FOR LATER