Days Out – LEGOLAND Windsor

In September we headed to LEGOLAND Windsor for the day.  Mr ATWWAH had taken a day off work (it was a Monday), the schools had gone back and we had free entry as I’d been working for Merlin Entertainments (who own and operate the theme park) before Mini ATWWAH was born.

Despite all of the above we were quite surprised that the car park was pretty full and there were quite a few kids of school age there.  I assume some schools have training days straight after the long summer break.

Entry to the park is pretty pricey and full price adult admissions are around the £50 each mark.  However there are often 2 for 1 or Kids/Adults Go Free promotions knocking around so definitely go online before visiting to see if you can find a discount voucher.  Also, during term time there are reduced rates for pre-schoolers and even an Annual Pass you can buy if you think you will be visiting more than once a year.

We’ve been to Chessington a couple of times and really enjoyed it, find out more here but Master ATWWAH is now very much into LEGO and it was a bit of a ‘you have a new baby brother but we still give you lots of attention’ treat.  Mini ATWWAH was three months old when we visited and slept for most of the day.

The park is huge and slightly overwhelming when you first enter but take a deep breath and check out the map as well as show times for anything you desperately want to see.  Like most theme parks it is split into specific zones which are well themed and once you get your bearings it’s not as huge as you think it is.  There is a hotel at the park too and you could easily spend two days there in order to see everything.  We spent hours there and were one of the last to leave at the end of the day and we still missed bits out.

Our lowdown includes:

Star Wars Miniland

This is right at the beginning of the park and is basically an indoor Star Wars world all in LEGO.  Mr ATWWAH definitely got the most out of this part of the theme park.  Master ATWWAH has developed a Star Wars fascination (with the original films) as he watched each one over three mornings with his dad when Mini ATWWAH arrived and we were still in hospital.  I didn’t believe Mr ATWWAH when he told me they were classified U, but he’s right, I checked.

The attraction overwhelmed him a bit and they do have an age recommendation on there but I saw kids in there of three or four who were thoroughly enjoying it.  I think it was the LEGO Darth Vader at the start which put him off.  But any Star Wars fan will love it.

Driving School

We visited a LEGOLAND Discovery Centre in Manchester and Master ATWWAH was disappointed to be too young to do the driving experience.  But, the great thing at the theme park is there are two separate driving experiences and three year olds can participate – woo hoo!  He loved it.  You are given a bit of a ‘lesson’ at the start where the kids are told which is the accelerator etc.  Master ATWWAH was put out there wasn’t a brake like in mummy’s car and that you just took your foot off the accelerator to stop but it was brilliant watching all these little kids going around in cars on their own.

The staff who worked in that part deserve a medal, or danger money, with cars hitting them ‘at speed’ and some of the little ones having tantrums or crying when their cars got stuck.

Car at LEGOLAND

Is this an automatic????

Digger Challenge

Over in the LEGO City area Master ATWWAH spotted Digger Challenge which involved real JCB’s that the kids could operate with some adult help and the idea being to collect as many balls as you could.  For those who remember the Krypton Factor they could have included it in one of the challenges.  It seemed to be pretty impossible.  Some of the diggers weren’t working properly and then even the ones which were seemed very difficult to operate.  Master ATWWAH was in the queue for a short while so I watched a fair few kids and their dads/granddads/uncles helping and there was a lot of frustration.  It was a bit underwhelming but a great idea in theory.

Digger Challenge

The almost impossible Digger Challenge

Atlantis Submarine Voyage

Even Mini ATWWAH could come on the Atlantis Submarine Voyage.  It was such a nice surprise as none of us knew what to expect but it was great.  You go down into a submarine and sit and the ride takes you through a real aquarium and then you have to help get the submarine back to the surface as there is a problem.  This is possibly the most underwhelming ride description ever but I don’t want to give too much away but it’s really good.  Definitely go on it if you visit.

Fire Academy

In terms of ride highlights Master ATWWAH’s was Fire Academy, more of an experience than a ride.  He took Mr ATWWAH on it three times.  It’s brilliant and great fun to watch as you can see how competitive the adults are.

There are about six huge LEGO fire engines which you go in and you have to move the engine – remember the old cartoons with train engines where two people are pumping a mechanism so it moves – you have to do that so the fire engine goes anywhere. It’s hilarious as some kids can’t be bothered to do it, some dads don’t let the kids do it and do it themselves, some of the techniques employed make you laugh out loud…….anyway when you get the fire engine along the track you are faced with a ‘burning’ building.  You jump out, one of you pumps the water, the other aims it to put out the fire.  One dad was so carried away he jumped out and started doing it while his little kid stood on the fire engine shouting him as he couldn’t get down without help.

A bell rings when the first team has put out the ‘fire’ and everyone has to jump back onto the fire engines and get back to the start line.  Sweat was poured and it brings out the alpha male in everyone.

fire academy

It’s all about the winning at Fire Academy

Pirates of Skeleton Bay Stunt Show

We were properly British and watched the pirate stunt show in the pouring rain.  Part of the show means you can get wet anyway so it didn’t really matter.  The show was about 15 minutes long, felt a tad longer in the rain, but was really well done and had enough of a story to keep the kids entertained and even featured a jetski.

 

MINILAND

Head to MINILAND at the end of the day as it’s quieter and unlike the rides which close at a certain time you can mooch around a bit even at the end of the day. Most of the crowds have gone so you should get some good pics too.  It’s amazing to see such iconic landmarks from around the world in LEGO.  There are sound effects and some of the models move.  Some of it is a bit tired but it’s generally pretty impressive.

I’ve always loved a model village so I could have spent hours there checking out all the detail.

Overall we had a brilliant day and we’d happily go back and do some favourites as well as check out areas we didn’t even get to.  We had lunch in the hotel which was a bit on the pricey side but what you’d expect from a theme park.  We all had burgers which were fine, nothing special.  The only real gripe all day was that as it was out of season a lot of the food stands and cafes were shut and there wasn’t enough signage to tell you where the closest open café was which was a bit frustrating in the rain.

 

Do you like a day out?  What about…..

Spending the day with Thomas

Seeing London from the air

Going to the theatre

2 Comments
  1. My kids still love Legoland and they are 12 and 9. So you may have many, many more years of visits!! We have used Tesco vouchers in the past to make it more affordable too – agree that it is worth looking for 2 for 1s etc.

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