Last Friday Daniel had an Inset day. Friday also happens to be Chris’ day off and so we decided to seize the opportunity of a free Friday in term time to go to Legoland. We met up with some friends there and all of us enjoyed our first ever Legoland experience.
Legoland certainly has the wow factor. As we were driving up to it, all the Lego models made the children very excited. We got there about 45 minutes before the park opened and so were able to park relatively close to the entrance but still in the standard parking zone.
Despite it being a term-time weekday, Legoland was still fairly busy. However, we had read up on it beforehand and were fairly well prepared and knew where we wanted to head first. We decided not to get the Hill Train down the hill but instead walked and headed straight for Coastguard HQ (via the toilets). Having headed there first, the queues for Coastguard HQ were not too bad and all of the children loved this ride. One adult is able to accompany one or two children in little boats and it’s great fun although there is the potential to get slightly wet.
Once off Coastguard HQ, we followed the path round to Atlantis Submarine Voyage. Once again, we hardly had to queue at all. Although at first Joshua seemed quite scared of this ride (it’s quite dark going in), it was so enthralling that he soon forgot why he was crying. You are loaded into ‘submarines’ which although are not submarines, there are windows all along the bottom so you can see all the fish (both real and made of lego) in the water. It was absolutely incredible and a must do for all the family. Once off the submarines, there are more tanks of fish you are able to walk through. My comment was, if Carlsberg did aquariums…
After this we had planned to do Laser Raiders but with various toilet stops, we decided we might be best saving this till the queues had died down at the end of the day. We therefore walked on a bit from Atlantis Submarine Voyage and went to the Dino Safari. This was a lovely ride for the little ones. The friends we were with have three children and whenever we came to a ride that required one adult per child, such as this one, the Legoland staff were extremely accommodating and let one of them stay at the front of the queue with the children not on the ride at the time.
By the time we had done the Dino Safari, we felt it was time to eat our picnic lunch, all of us having been up extremely early that morning. We found a spot to sit by the SQUID surfer. A few of us then queued to go on this although it was a fairly lengthy queue. We then headed to Heartlake City for the 1:15 showing of the Pirates of Skeleton Bay. Despite getting there half an hour early, it was already getting crowded but we found a nice shady spot to sit and the boys loved the show.
After getting an ice cream and a refillable drinks bottle (once you have paid £7.50 for a bottle and initial drink, refills throughout the day are free), we found ourselves walking by the Fire Academy ride. With both Daniel and Joshua being fireman mad, we decided to queue for this ride. This was the one queue that seemed to go on forever. In future, I would definitely try and visit this ride at a quieter time of the day. However, the boys loved the ride! Be warned, parents, your involvement is necessary to move the fire engine and pump the water!
Once the imaginary fire had been safely put out, we then had a wander around Miniland to avoid the queues for a while. This was one of my absolute favourite parts of Legoland. I love things in miniature and, being a lover of London, I especially loved the miniature London. The boys happily spotted the many trains moving around Miniland and we could have probably spent a good couple of hours in this section. However, there was plenty more that we wanted to see and do.
Our friends, Sam and Sarah, took Daniel on The Dragon roller coaster and we took Josh for a play in the Castaway Camp play area. By this time, it was getting towards the end of the day and we knew we would have to head back to Laser Raiders if we wanted to have a chance to go on this ride. Thankfully the queue wasn’t too bad and the boys loved shooting their laser guns at the various targets as we went around on this ride. We then headed to the Hill Train to get it back up the hill at the end of the day.
We really loved out day at Legoland and found that, with careful planning, it is possible to avoid too much queuing. Despite this, we can definitely understand the appeal of the £15 per person Q-Bots that you can buy to ‘queue’ for you. I think if you were going in the school holidays or at a weekend, these would be invaluable. There was a lot that we didn’t get to do and we definitely hope to visit again sometime.
After Legoland, we had booked to stay at the Premier Inn in Slough which was fantastic and the boys both slept well. We then spent a bit of time exploring Windsor and the local area on Saturday. Both Alexandra Gardens (for the crazy golf) and Langley Park were worth a visit.