Looking for some tips for a trip to Legoland California amusement park in Carlsbad, California? Here are some money-saving tips and things we learned during our visit to the park full of fun and bricks.

  1. Parking   Parking is a pain and costs $15. There are long lines to get in and out of the Legoland parking lot (up to 30 minutes if you arrive or depart at opening and closing in the peak summer months).  If you have a shuttle from your hotel, use it.  If you must drive, you could (at your own risk) use the Legoland hotel parking lot (just off The Crossings Drive, NOT Legoland Drive) and eat at the hotel restaurant or buffet. Just let the hotel gate guard you are there to go to the Legoland hotel restaurant and park in the hotel self-parking.
  2. Places to Eat   Avoid places inside the park because they are super expensive and not very tasty. If you don’t have time to pack your own food, go to the Legoland hotel (just outside the front park entrance) and eat at the Skyline Cafe. The food is much better and not as expensive, and it’s less crowded.
  3. Getting around the park  If you have a little one or ones, make sure to bring a stroller.  Strollers can be rented at the park, but having your own will save you some money and give you a place to store your belongings. There’s a lot of walking and waiting in lines.
  4. Hydrate   Bring water bottles to fill up at the water dispenser connected to the soda machines in the restaurants inside the park.
  5. What to wear   If you are going to the Legoland water park, be sure to dress the kids in swim gear, but hit the rides first so they are not cold after getting wet at the water park.
  6. Park Attractions and Rides   Do the Lost Kingdom (northeast side of park), Coastersarus (smaller kids roller coaster just to left of front park entrance) ride, or Techic Coaster (for older kids) ride first if you get to the park early. Those rides are most popular so wait times get worse as the day progresses and don’t get shorter until after 6:30pm. Updated wait times are posted here if you have a mobile phone with you.
  7. Park Overview   Do the Coast Cruise after you get the busy rides out of the way. It’s a good way to see  around the park and its really relaxing and fun
  8. Hidden attraction   If you want a place to relax during the day, hang out at the Legoland hotel located just outside of the front entrance of the park. They have good WiFi (AT&T service is awful inside the park), a Lego pit for the kids, and a life size castle the kids can play inside of.  Don’t miss the hotel elevators, which have fun music and a disco ball inside.  And just outside the first floor elevators, there is a whoopie cushion on the floor that the kids will get a kick out of.
  9. Snacks   Pack some snacks like energy bars. There might be a no outside food policy but the gate attendants never checked our bags when we went. And even if they did, you can bring food for the little ones and I doubt they would say anything.
  10. Season Pass   Keep those paper admission tickets you purchased. You can use the paid value towards a season pass. And if you don’t want to get a season pass, you can always give them to another friend who will be going to Legoland within 2 weeks of first use so they can apply the value to a season pass

We hope you found these tips helpful! If you have any other tips or suggestions, please post them in the comments below.

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