With boys aged four and seven, we are smack bang in the Lego peak of their childhood. I know I’m not the only parent who has spent hours on their hands and knees picking up the stuff, only to have the incredibly painful experience of treading barefoot on that one piece you missed! Ugh.
So, we knew that our mid year holiday to Denmark for a family reunion would involve a pilgrimage to the home of Lego. Sure, it’s the kind of place you need to embrace which means staying at the Legoland Hotel with its pirate and ninja themed rooms. Thank goodness the beds aren’t made of Lego. Not a place I thought I would love pre-kids – but I’m a convert – Legoland is cool, and not just for kids.
By Libby Larsen.
The happiest place in the world
Did you know that Lego comes from Denmark – the happiest country in the world, according to the UN World Happiness Report. So, you’d figure then that the original Legoland Theme Park in Denmark must be one cheerful place – correct! It's is pure heaven for little blonde Scandi kids. With the Knights Kingdom, Adventure Land, Duplo Land, Polar Land, Ninjago World, Legoredo Town, and lots of free shows every day - there's heaps on offer.
Lego beat poor old Barbie, Action Man and the humble Teddy Bear to be named “Toy of the Century” in 2000 by Fortune Magazine. A mind-boggling 20 billion Lego bricks are made every year, enough to circle the earth more than 9 times, according to National Geographic. That’s a lot of plastic, and I shudder to think about the land fill should any pre-loved pieces find their way there.
Pirate Land - Argh Me Hearties
Pirate Land is a hoot. There’s a cool boat trip that takes you past dastardly pirates, cackling parrots and sinister shipwrecks where you are fired upon with water cannons by other ships and watching spectators – and if you don’t fire first, you’ll be blastedt!
Cowboys & Egyptian Mummies
There’s Legoredo Town with gun-slinging cowboys, where kids can pan for gold. Adventure Land has wild jungle beasts, mummies, jet-ski jungle racers and other cool stuff. Our boys loved being able to set off water blasts at the jet-ski jungle racers.
Traffic School - Beep Beep!
In Legoland you only have to be seven to get your driver's licence! Yep, Legoland has it's own traffic school - with a petrol station, car wash, traffic lights round-abouts and lots of primary coloured little electric cars. Kid's get an in-depth briefing on road rules. e.g. drive on the right hand side.
We were all mesmerised by Miniland with its Lilliputian models of the Danish Royal Palace, Amsterdam canals, German villages and a Scottish castle and loch. There's so much in the detail. The boys were enthralled watching the lochs filling, the cranes lifting cargo into boats and all the quirky little details you'd miss if you just walked by.
Wild Beasts & Iconic Monuments
The boys loved the mini-jeep safari through an African wildlife park with lions, zebras and giraffes all built from Lego of course as well as the boat ride past famous landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty, the Acropolis, the White House, Taj Mahal and Abu Simbel Egyptian temple.
But hands-down the highlight for the boys was Ninjago World where we had to complete Lloyd’s Master Maze, and Jay’s Lightning Drill. The 3D ride is awesome – we had to master the elements of fire, earth, lightning and ice by putting on our 3D glasses to fight the great serpent and archenemy of the ninjas.
Without a doubt Legoland was the highlight of the boys’ holiday and honestly for me it was up there with window shopping in the Danish design stores and exploring the quirky cobbled streets in Copenhagen.
* This article has some exerts from an article I wrote for Off the Leash Magazine.
Legoland Fast Facts
Cost - There's no avoiding it, Legoland is expensive. But, you can get packages on the official the website which include entry passes and accommodation etc., so it's worth booking in advance. You can also pay extra to jump the queues, but we opted not to, and it was fine. All the rides have signs saying the wait times.
Location - Legoland is just outside Billund, a smallish town about 2.5 hours drive from Copenhagen. We drove from Copenhagen. There's an international airport if you want to fly, and you can also get there by train. I reckon it's too far for a day trip from Copenhagen. We opted for 2 nights and it was perfect for us with little kids - not too rushed.
Other stuff to do - Apart from Legoland there are other attractions that have been built around the town with water slides, an aqua domes, a zoo, museums and pretty much everything else to keep kids happy.
Stay - Check out the Legoland website for their accommodation options. There's camping, cabins, a motel and a hotel. We splurged and stayed at the Legoland Hotel which is right at Legoland. Sure, it's cheesy, but hey you are at Legoland so embrace it! If you can handle themed rooms - there's endless choices for your kids! We opted for the Park View Room because it had direct views right over Legoland which were fabulous!
Our Room with a View!
Libby Larsen - Growing up Troppo
Growing up Troppo provides honest travel advice tips and inspiration from parents about special and unique places to stay, play and eat with kids that parents love too! Travel is and has always been, Libby's passion and she believes this shouldn't stop when you have kids. Libby writes a monthly column for Off The Leash - the Darwin Entertainment Guide and is the Northern Territory "Experience Expert" for Experience Oz + NZ.