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What age ranges is Legoland for?
Legoland caters for most age ranges. If you have older teenagers they may not as many rides as other theme parks but there are rides to suit everyone. So it's a perfect place for when you have a wide range of ages in your family. Even the grandparents will enjoy the models and the more sedate rides (my dad mostly enjoys photographing us having fun!)
When to go?
If at all possible avoid August, most school holidays and weekends (the queues are huge) plus Ascot Week (the traffic is horrendous). The quietest days are term time Monday - Thursday with Friday being slightly busier. If you're kids are not yet at school you have the most flexibility. For those with school age children go on one of their Inset days if possible.
How much will it cost?
If you just walk up to the gate and pay the standard admission fees the tickets are:
Child (3-15) /Senior (60+): £28
This is well beyond many people's budgets so there are ways to save on this.
- book online to save 10%
- get a 2 day pass
- buy a Legoland season ticket (a basic one doesn't give you access in August)
- buy a Merlin pass and get access to all their venues (Alton Towers, Warwick Castle, Chessington, Thorpe Park, London Eye, Dungeons, Madame Tussauds. Sealife Centres)
- use Tesco Clubcard vouchers to either get individual tickets or passes.
- go as a group of 7 or more and phone to get a discount
- use one of their Parent and Toddler vouchers on selected dates.
In fact if you plan ahead you shouldn't ever need to pay the full price!
Before you go
Measure your children so you know before hand which rides they can go on. Key restrictions are 0.9 m, 1.0 m, 1.1 m and 1.3 m. Some rides have both a minimum to ride and a minimum to ride without an over 16. If you are a single parent with more than one child under 1.3 m tall persuade another adult to go with you! You can go it alone but it's easier. The park do allow you to go on consecutive times with 2 children but they are not responsible for children left unattended. They also encourage parent swapping so another adult may take your child on a ride whilst you keep an eye on their child.
Set your budget for the day and let your kids know so they hopefully do less pestering! Every different kingdom has it's own retail outlets with toys based on the theme. All of these are available at the main shop by the entrance. If you agree a max. spend with the kids and say only at the end of the day it doesn't give them false expectations and they won't lose the toy somewhere in the park!
What do I need to take?
I always pack a perpetual picnic as this firstly saves money and secondly means that you can easily have a bite to eat or a drink between rides or whilst waiting in queues. If its going to be a hot day something like crudities or melon can be thirst quenching as well as stomach filling. There are plenty of different catering outlets all over the site if you are wanting something more substantial. Again let your kids know if you are only going to treat them to a single ice cream so they are prepared.
Take waterproof coats and possibly a change of clothes for going home. Many of the rides are very wet and you don't want to be driving home soaking wet! They do sell ponchos if you forget but I overheard several people saying they weren't very effective...
On a hot day pack the younger children some swimming things and towels. There is a fabulous wet play area for them to run around in. Next to this is a shop selling costumes if you do forget.
All this clobber can soon add up so take the pushchair even if your youngest is happy to walk everywhere! The park is very buggy friendly and before you go on a ride you can just leave the buggy in the adjacent buggy park. Keep your valuables in something watertight you can take with you on rides.
Wear comfortable shoes and clothing as you will be walking long distances. Clothes that dry out quickly are a very good idea. Pack the hats and sun cream as well - the queuing areas are often shaded but the rest of the park isn't.
Once in the park
Get there half an hour before opening time to allow getting a decent parking spot and a chance to use the loo! You can pay extra to use the nearest car park but getting there early will save you £6...
Decide which way round you are going to go and follow the map! If you are interested in any of the shows you can base your itinerary around the publicised times. On busy days it may be worth getting to the most popular rides as early as possible to reduce queuing times.
Have a great time.