LEGOLAND California is located in Carlsbad, approximately 35 miles north of downtown San Diego. It’s home to a theme park, water park, and SEA LIFE aquarium. A fabulous attraction for visitors to San Diego with children under the age of 12 years old, LEGOLAND California has rollercoasters, 4D movie theaters, water slides, sandy beaches, and a great deal more. You can even spend the night at the attraction itself, in one of LEGOLAND California’s two LEGO-themed hotels.
Save on your visit to the Legoland California!
Legoland California is included on the Go San Diego Pass. Save an additional 10% on the Go City Pass with Coupon Code: CMGOCITY10 The discount stacks on top the current sale prices! Promo expires on August 31st.
LEGOLAND California History
LEGOLAND California first opened its doors in 1999, when it became the first LEGOLAND theme park built in the United States—and only the third such location found anywhere in the world. The park’s original attractions included themed areas like Imagination Zone, Castle Hill, and Pirate Shores. These beloved spots remain active today, even though the park itself has grown in size and scope, most notably adding a SEA LIFE Aquarium to the mix in 2008.
LEGOLAND California’s water park began operations in 2010, while the Miniland USA zone was opened to much fanfare just one year later. In 2013, the first LEGO-themed hotel was opened here. A second such hotel was constructed in 2018, and LEGOLAND California continues to attract millions of visitors each year from all over the world.
What’s at LEGOLAND California
The centerpiece of LEGOLAND California is its theme park. Designed for children between the ages of 2 and 12, the LEGOLAND California theme park contains a whopping 60 different rides, shows, and attractions. You’ll discover here everything from rollercoasters to 4D movies to bumper cars, video games, and so much more. You can even go on a tour of the LEGO factory to see how your favorite LEGO bricks are made.
There are countless rides ranging from roller coasters, boat journeys, and safari jeeps to the LEGOLAND Express Train. Kids love Driving School in Fun Town where they put on seatbelts in real electric cars and learn to signal, turn, stop, and go, earning their LEGOLAND driver licenses! Sky Cruiser, one of the Park’s most popular rides, provides a whole new view from cars that zip along tracks high above Fun Town. Another Fun Town highlight is Skipper School, where parents and kids have a chance to maneuver their own LEGO boats through the water.
Probably the most fascinating aspect of the Park, and certainly the most appealing to adults, is Miniland USA. This area is the heart of LEGOLAND and can be seen from many points throughout the Park. Twenty million LEGO bricks were used to create seven popular spots in the US: the Las Vegas Strip, New England Harbor, New Orleans, New York City, San Francisco, Southern California, and Washington, D.C. at a scale of 1:20. The results are mesmerizing. Don’t miss Miniland’s Block of Fame, a fun LEGO 3-dimensional art gallery featuring the busts of pop icons and historical figures. For a delectable snack you can’t get anywhere else in the Park, stop by Granny’s Apple Fries in Castle Hill. It’s a LEGOLAND signature treat that’s fun to eat.
The innovative Duplo Village and Duplo Play Town will keep younger children captivated for hours. There are themes to fit all young adventurous tastes ranging from pirates, dinosaurs, fairy tales, and castles to Egyptian Pharaohs and safari treks. LEGOLAND offers the opportunity to go behind the scenes and see how the extraordinary LEGO movie was made and filmed; this is sure to be a huge hit with aspiring young filmmakers. Children can also come face to face with his or her favorite LEGO character.
LEGOLAND Water Park is 10 acres of splish-splashing fun that the whole family will love. Spread throughout these 10 acres are seven unique water slides, multiple splash pads, and plenty of sandy beaches. Build-A-Raft River is a particular favorite—there you can design your own LEGO raft and put it straight to the test. Pirate Reef is a classic ride, one that sees you racing along next to your friends and family in the midst of a powerful water cannon.
Another major attraction at LEGOLAND California is SEA LIFE Aquarium. This acclaimed aquarium franchise has facilities all over the world, and the LEGOLAND California location is home to over 6,000 sea creatures numbering roughly 350 distinctive species. Sharks, rays, octopi, jellyfish, seahorses, and more—you name it, they’re here! You can even catch a live feeding on-site, too.
There are plenty of places to eat, drink, and shop throughout LEGOLAND California. Roughly a dozen different restaurants serve the resort, and whether you’re in the mood for burgers, ramen, churros, salads, sandwiches, BBQ, or just crave ice cream, you’ll find it here. Likewise, a plethora of unique shops sell all sorts of souvenirs, accessories, costumes, and of course, LEGO bricks.
A trip to San Diego would not be complete without experiencing the wide variety of activities at LEGOLAND, but don’t leave Carlsbad without checking out LEGOLAND’s neighbors The Crossings at Carlsbad and Carlsbad Premium Outlets. Visitors can take in a round of golf on a spectacular course at The Crossings at Carlsbad, adjacent to LEGOLAND, or dine in their upscale Canyons Restaurant, which also features Sunday brunches, Wine Lover Wednesdays, and daily Happy Hour. On the other side of LEGOLAND, Carlsbad Premium Outlets feature over 90 outlet stores from Barneys New York to Fossil to Adidas. Fun for the kids, and fun for mom and dad are all right there with these three vacation destination hot spots.
Tips for Visiting LEGOLAND California
- If you are seeing other sights while in San Diego you can save some money if by getting a Go San Diego Pass. The Legoland California is included as are many other great San Diego Attractions.
- Guests of LEGOLAND California must make reservations before their visit. This multi-step process is not difficult to complete, and can be done entirely through the official LEGOLAND California website.
- LEGOLAND California hosts a full calendar of seasonal special events, many of them corresponding to major holidays like the Fourth of July, Halloween, and New Year’s. If you think there’s a chance you might be visiting during one of these festive times of year, it’s worth checking their official website for more information.
- Some of the attractions at LEGOLAND California—like, for instance, the Build-A-Raft River—have minimum height requirements for participants. You’ll want to be in the know regarding these criteria before your little one gets their heart set on a ride they aren’t quite ready for.
- LEGOLAND California has gone entirely cashless, meaning every on-site transaction you make there will need to be done via a credit or debit card.
- Strollers aren’t permitted in the SEA LIFE Aquarium, so if you’ll be visiting with small children, that’s something to keep in mind as you plan your outing.