Legoland California Resort

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Legoland California
Legoland California logo.svg
Legoland California logo
Location Legoland California Resort, Carlsbad, California, United States
Coordinates 33°7′36″N 117°18′40″W / 33.12667°N 117.31111°W / 33.12667; -117.31111Coordinates: 33°7′36″N 117°18′40″W / 33.12667°N 117.31111°W / 33.12667; -117.31111
Theme Lego toys and childhood amusement
Owner Merlin Entertainments
General Manager Peter Ronchetti
Opened March 20, 1999 (1999-03-20)
Operating season Year-round
Visitors per annum 1.4 million (2004)[1]
Area 128 acres (52 ha)
Total more than 60
Roller coasters 3
Water rides 7
Website Official website
Status operating

Legoland California is a theme park and miniature park located in Carlsbad, California, based on the Lego toy brand. On March 20, 1999, it became the third Legoland park to open, and the first Legoland outside of Europe. The park is owned by Merlin Entertainments, the largest theme park firm in Europe, and second largest in the world after Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. Merlin acquired the properties in 2004, and took a controlling interest in 2005.[2] Merlin also owns and operates the Sea Life aquarium that opened in August 2008 at Legoland California, the first in North America.[3][4] Merlin employs more than 13,000 and catered to an estimated 41 million guests worldwide in 2010,[5] growing to 60 million in 2013.[6] A second park in the United States, Legoland Florida opened in 2011.


Entrance to Legoland California

The Legoland California Resort currently encompasses the original park (1999), a Lego-themed Sea Life Aquarium (2008), a CHIMA-themed water park (2010) and a hotel (2013).

Park areas[edit]

The Beginning[edit]

The Beginning is the section of the park near the entrance, which includes the ticket booths, entrance gates, guest services and several gift shops and food vendors.[7]

Dino Island[edit]

Dino Island is a dinosaur-themed section[8] containing a large sand area where children may dig for "fossils" and the Gerstlauer-built "Coastersaurus"[9] mini steel roller coaster, a close copy of the Legoland Germany junior coaster Drachenjagd, with a ride duration of approximately 2 minutes. It was installed by Ride Entertainment Group, who handles all of Gerstlauer's operations in the Western Hemisphere.[10][11]

Attraction Added Manufacturer Description
Coastersaurus 2004 Gerstlauer Family steel roller coaster

Duplo Village[edit]

The Duplo Village section is based on the LEGO-affiliated namesake brand marketed to children aged 1½ to 5 years old. The area includes a number of Duplo-themed and water-oriented attractions.[12]

Attraction Added Manufacturer Description
Fairy Tale Brook 1999 Morgan Manufacturing Tow boat ride with fairy tale scenes illustrated with Lego models
DUPLO Playtown 1999 Playground for young children
Legoland Express 1999 Small train ride
Safari Trek 1999 Safari-themed car ride
Water Works 1999 A set of interactive water fountains and water features
LEGO Movie Experience 2014 A display of models and sets from the movie

Fun Town[edit]

Fun Town is a role-playing amusement area where guests simulate adult skills or professional identities.[13]

Fun Town is also the location of the entrance to Legoland Water Park, which opened on May 28, 2010.

Attraction Added Manufacturer Description
Volvo Driving School 1999 Children aged 6 to 13 years drive self-propelled Lego cars on a closed circuit featuring multiple intersections, two way traffic and traffic signals. It is designed to promote safe driving and skills.
Volvo Junior Driving School 1999 Children aged 3 to 5 years drive similar self-propelled Lego cars on a simple oval.
Police and Fire Academy Competitive team attraction where groups propel a hand pumped truck in a race down a street to douse a simulated building "fire" and return the truck
Flight Squadron 1999 LEGO airplane-themed ride that move up and down while moving in a circle
Sky Patrol 1999 Lego helicopter-themed ride that move up and down and can spin in place
Skipper School 1999 Self-propelled boat-ride that travels a winding water course
Kid Power Towers 1999 Heege Tower ride where riders pull themselves up the ride with a rope
Sky Cruiser 1999 Premier Rides Cycle rail ride where riders pedal their way through the course on an elevated track
Adventurer's Club 1999 Walk-through attraction with scenes such as ancient Egypt, a rainforest, and the arctic
LEGO Factory Tour 1999 Walk-through attraction that teaches young children how LEGO models are made
LEGO Clubhouse 1999 A room where you can build your own LEGO models with occasional classes teaching children techniques on building LEGO models

Miniland USA[edit]

San Francisco
The lego model of Downtown Manhattan, with the 2002 design of One World Trade Center.

Miniland USA is a 1:20 scale model miniature park featuring prominent architecture and symbols from seven areas in the United States.[14] Certain models are visible throughout the Legoland park. It was constructed over the course of three years using more than 20 million LEGO bricks.[15]

Miniland includes the Model Shop, the main design and building office for Legoland's US parks. A large viewing window allows guests to watch master model builders working on new models. Repairs and refurbishment of existing models are also conducted in the Model Shop.[16]

A Lego man using the toilet at Grand Central Station
A Lego man using the toilet in Legoland California's Grand Central Station model.

Certain model builders have inserted incongruous scenes into the Miniland vignettes, including a businessman mooning the presidential motorcade and a man using the toilet in the Grand Central Station model. Miniland officials insist all such scenes are incorporated with full management knowledge and approval.[17]

Attraction Added Manufacturer Description
Coast Cruise 1999 Morgan Manufacturing 8-minute long boat ride where guests can view many monuments such as the Sydney Opera House, Taj Mahal, Eiffel Tower, and Mount Rushmore
New England 1999 Miniland display depicting a New England harbor
Las Vegas 2007 Miniland display depicting the Las Vegas strip with its famous hotels such as Tropicana Las Vegas, Mirage Las Vegas, and the Stratosphere Tower
Washington, DC 1999 Miniland display depicting the National Mall with monuments such as the U.S. Capitol, Washington Monument, and the Smithsonian Castle
Block of Fame 1999 Park walkway with LEGO busts of famous individuals such as George Washington, Marilyn Monroe, and Winston Churchill.
Model Shop 1999 Viewing area for the park's model shop, where many of Legoland California's models are built
New Orleans 1999 Miniland display depicting New Orleans and its many waterways
New York 1999 Miniland display depicting Manhattan Island of New York City with places like Central Park and Times Square depicted
San Francisco 1999 Miniland display depicting San Francisco with monuments such as Pier 39, the Golden Gate Bridge, and the Transamerica Pyramid
Southern California 1999 Miniland display depicting Southern California with monuments such as the TCL Chinese Theatre, Huntington Beach Pier, and Mission San Luis Rey
Star Wars Miniland 2011 Miniland display depicting the seven Star Wars movies, including the Clone Wars movie[15]
A view into the Model Shop
A view into the Model Shop at Legoland California.

Castle Hill[edit]

Castle Hill is a medieval castle-themed area.

The area includes a miniature golf course. The space had previously housed a "rock band" or "singing rock garden". The rock's original recording can still be heard on holes 12-18 on the course.[18]

Attraction Added Manufacturer Description
The Dragon 1999 Vekoma Family steel roller coaster with the first segment of the ride acting like a dark ride through a castle
Knight's Tournament 2005 KUKA Robotic arm-like ride where guests can select their level of intensity, with level one being the least intense and level five being the most intense
Hideaways 1999 Large multi-level wooden playground designed for younger children, structure with slides, rope ladders, and bridges
Royal Joust 1999 Rocking horse ride where guests ride fiberglass horses that rock back and forth above a track
Wild Woods Golf 2005 Miniature golf course

Imagination Zone[edit]

In the Imagination Zone, visitors can ride a Wild Mouse-style roller coaster called the "Technic Coaster-Test Track"(formally Project X), choose from three different "4-D" movies called "Bob the Builder", "Spellbreaker", and "Clutch Powers" (a racing movie). Kids can also race Lego cars that they build themselves in Build 'n Test, play the "Maniac Challenge" in which guests play LEGO PC games, and program robots in "Mindstorms". Guests can also ride on "Bionicle Blaster", which is a version of the teacup ride, or the "Aquazone Wave Racers", a dual water carousel.

Attraction Added Manufacturer Description
Technic Coaster 2001 Mack Wild mouse roller coaster
Bionicle Blaster 2001 Mack Bionicle-themed tea cups ride
Aquazone Wave Racers 2000 Heege/Zierer Dual water carousel
LEGO Show Place 1999 4D theater that shows LEGO Chima 4D and Clutch Powers
LEGO Hero Factory Hero Factory play area
XBOX Family Gamespace Area where guests can play LEGO games on Xbox consoles
LEGO Mindstorms Classes that teach children how to operate Mindstorms robots
DUPLO Play 1999 Indoor play area for small children with DUPLO bricks
Build & Test 1999 LEGO play area where guests can build cars out of LEGO bricks and race them with others

Pirate Shores[edit]

Pirate Shores is a well received splash park and has six water oriented rides and attractions. [19][20]

Attraction Added Manufacturer Description
Splash Battle 2006 Mack Interactive water ride where guests spray each other with water on-ride and off-ride
Soak-N-Sail 2006 Interactive two-story complex water playground featuring a collection of smaller slides, jets, cannons and two tower top 500 gallon buckets that void their contents intermittently
Treasure Falls 2006 Small themed log flume geared towards children
Swabbie's Deck 2006 Small water play area for small children
Captain Cranky's Challenge 2007 Zamperla Rockin' Tug ride where a mock pirate ship that sways in a u-shaped track and rotates bi-directionally
Pirate Reef 2012 Hopkins 'Shoot the chutes' attraction with interactive components including a splash bridge, water cannons and brick building play area. The attraction is accessible from both Pirate Shores and Legoland Water Park![21]

Land of Adventure[edit]

The most recent section of the theme park (opened in May 2008), which is designed to replicate the 1920s in Egypt. "Pharaoh's Revenge" involves guests firing foam balls at targets and at each other. On "Beetle Bounce" guests bounce nearly 15 feet (4.6 m) to nearly touch the enormous beetles above. "Cargo Ace", lets guests board one of eight planes to fly six feet into the air. "Lost Kingdom Adventure" is Legoland California's most recent attraction. Guests board and ride a roadster to recover stolen treasure by blasting targets with laser guns along their journey. Another recently opened attraction is "Dune Raiders", which is a slide.

Attraction Added Manufacturer Description
Beetle Bounce 2008 S&S Two small drop tower rides
Dune Raiders 2009 Prime Play Mat racer ride and a slide complex
Cargo Ace 2008 Zamperla Airplane-themed ride where the airplanes swing to the sides on the turns
Lost Kingdom Adventure 2008 Sally Corporation Indoor interactive dark ride where guests can shoot lasers at targets
Pharaoh's Revenge 2008 Prime Play Small "foam factory" ride where guests can shoot foam balls in a small play area setting

Legoland Water Park[edit]

The first feature that users encounter when entering the Legoland Water Park is the Aquatune hydraulophone, an underwater pipe organ. The hydraulophone is the centerpiece of a series of interactive exhibits on either side of it that teach other elements of flow, such as water tables, and small water laboratory-like spaces where participants can explore hydraulophonic-like action (blocking water jets to create head, pressure, etc.), and also construct dams from Lego bricks.

This is a water park area in Legoland California. Construction began in September 2009. It opened on May 28, 2010. It is located next to the buildings in Fun Town. It is the first Legoland to feature a waterpark. It is not possible to buy a separate admission ticket solely for the water park. Legoland Water Park opened in Florida 2 years later. A Legends of Chima expansion opened in early July in 2014.

Attraction Added Area Description
Build-A-Raft River 2010 LEGOLAND Water Park Lazy river where guests can build foam LEGO bricks on their inner tube
DUPLO Splash Safari 2010 LEGOLAND Water Park Kids area with small water slides
Imagination Station 2010 LEGOLAND Water Park Interactive play area
Joker Soaker 2010 LEGOLAND Water Park Tower that releases water onto the guests below
Kid Creek LEGOLAND Water Park Junior lazy river
Orange Rush 2010 LEGOLAND Water Park Large raft water slide
Splash Out 2010 LEGOLAND Water Park Body slide
Splash Zoo 2011 LEGOLAND Water Park Kids area
Twin Chasers 2010 LEGOLAND Water Park Two body slides
Pirate Reef 2012 LEGOLAND Water Park/Pirate Shores Shoot-the-chutes ride that has entrances in both Pirate Shores and the Water Park
Cragger's Swamp 2014 LEGO CHIMA Water Park Interactive water playground
Eglor's Build-A-Boat 2014 LEGO CHIMA Water Park LEGO building area where guests build small boats that they can place in a small artificial creek
Lion Temple Wave Pool 2014 LEGO CHIMA Water Park Wave pool with a 30' Mount Cavora "floating" in the middle
Speedorz Arena 2014 LEGO CHIMA Water Park Interactive play area where guests can race their Speedorz

FIRST LEGO League[edit]

Each December, Legoland hosts the FIRST LEGO League Southern California Regional Championships to decide which team out of 50+ teams goes on to St. Louis, MO or Toronto, Canada for the FLL National or World Championships.


  • 1999: Park Opens
  • 2000: Spellbreaker;[22] Aquazone Wave Racers
  • 2001: Technic Coaster [23]
  • 2002: LEGO Racers 4-D [24]
  • 2003: Legoland Sports Jam [25]
  • 2004: Dino Island; Coastersaurus;[26] Spellbreaker removed [22]
  • 2005: Knight’s Tournament; Wild Woods Golf; Freedom Tower model in Miniland New York[27]
  • 2006: Pirate Shores [28]
  • 2007: Las Vegas Miniland;[29] Captain Cranky’s Challenge
  • 2008: Land of Adventure; Sea Life Aquarium [30]
  • 2009: Dune Raiders [31]
  • 2010: Legoland Waterpark
  • 2011: Star Wars Miniland; Splash Zoo (in Legoland Waterpark)
  • 2012: Pirate Reef;[32] Star Wars Miniland Expansion; Claws exhibit at Sea Life Aquarium
  • 2013: Legoland Hotel; LEGO Legends of Chima 4D show
  • 2014: LEGO Legends of Chima Water Park;[33] Lego Movie Experience
  • 2015: Heartlake City; LEGO Death Star model


  1. ^ Jacoby, Edmond (28 January 2005). "Legland California says visitors, revenues up sharply in 2004". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  2. ^ Kinsman, Michael (July 14, 2005). "Control of Legoland parks sold". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  3. ^ Kragen, Pam (20 December 2008). "Legoland to reopen Sea Life Aquarium on Monday". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  4. ^ "NORTH AMERICA’S FIRST SEA LIFE AQUARIUM OPENS ITS DOORS!" (Press release). August 11, 2008. Archived from the original on July 26, 2009. Retrieved October 11, 2009. 
  5. ^ TEA/AECOM (2011). "2010 Theme Index: The Global Attractions Attendance Report" (PDF). Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). Retrieved 2012-03-29. 
  6. ^ TEA/AECOM (2014). "2013 Theme Index: The Global Attractions Attendance Report" (PDF). Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  7. ^ "The Beginning". Legoland California Resort. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  8. ^ "Dino Island". Legoland California Resort. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  9. ^ "References: North America: Coastersaurus". Gerstlauer Amusement Rides GMBH. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  10. ^ "Gerstlauer busy in 2011". Park World Magazine. 29 December 2010. Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  11. ^ "Projects: 2004—Legoland California". Ride Entertainment Group. Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  12. ^ "Duplo Village". Legoland California Resort. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  13. ^ "Fun Town". Legoland California Resort. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  14. ^ "Miniland USA". Legoland California Resort. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  15. ^ a b "Tour Legoland California". Retrieved 13 August 2015. 
  16. ^ Becraft, "Thanel" (6 February 2010). "Behind the scenes at the LEGOLAND California Model Shop: an interview with Gary McIntire [part 2]". The Brothers Brick. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  17. ^ Dougherty, Conor (14 March 2004). "Mature images Legoland builder's inside joke". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  18. ^ [1]. Legoland Castle Hill.
  19. ^ "LA Times Review: Legoland Pirate Reef ">[2]. LA Times Review: Legoland Pirate Reef.
  20. ^ "BizJournal More Details on Legoland’s Pirates Themed Expansion">[3].
  21. ^ "BizJournal More Details on Legoland’s Pirates Themed Expansion">[4]. BizJournal More Details on Legoland’s Pirates Themed Expansion.
  22. ^ a b Marden, Duane. "Spellbreaker - Legoland California". Roller Coaster Database. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  23. ^ Marden, Duane. "Technic Coaster - Legoland". Roller Coaster Database. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  24. ^ "A 4-D Movie & Out-Of-This-World Special Events Debut at the Family Theme Park in time for Summer 2002". Kidzn'Fun. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  25. ^ "Legoland Sports Jam". PRP. Retrieved 28 November 2012. 
  26. ^ Marden, Duane. "Coastersaurus - Legoland California". Roller Coaster Database. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  27. ^ "Wild Wood Golf Opens at LEGOLAND California". Travel Video News. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  28. ^ Niles, Robert. "'Pirate Shores' debuts at Legoland California". Theme Park Insider. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  29. ^ "Legoland Sneak Peek: Miniland Las Vegas Photos". RandomSanDiego. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  30. ^ "SEA LIFE™ Aquarium Lost City of Atlantis Opened in 2008". BeachCalifornia. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  31. ^ Niles, Robert. "It's not too early for the silly season". Theme Park Insider. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  32. ^ MacDonald, Brady. "Review: Pirate Reef ride guaranteed to get you wet at Legoland". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 19 November 2012. 
  33. ^

External links[edit]