This is the 1st part of a series of 4 entries that I will be writing about a mini holiday at our neighbour country, Malaysia. The other 3 parts will be
1. Legoland Water Park
2. Legoland Hotel
3. Little Big Club
We signed up for the Legoland annual pass when it first opened simply for the reason that it was much cheaper during the launch and we just need to visit it at least twice a year to get the pass worth the money. Our kids didn’t really enjoy the rides there then until recently when we renewed it because they gave free tickets to the newly opened Legoland Water Park.
I think the most distinct feeling between going to a theme park in South East Asia versus other parts of the world, must be the WEATHER! On any usual day, Legoland is just HOT, HOT, HOT. When it’s not so hot, it’s pouring rain! So either you brave the hot sun, or you get lucky and reach there just after the rain stops. BEST CONDITION EVER!
We were 50% lucky with the perfect weather to be in legoland. Out of 4 times we were there, 2 times was the just-after-rain weather, 1 time hot till everyone was cursing and swearing and 1 time when it was raining cats and dogs and all plans had to be cancelled. Dampening weather. So if plan to just be there for 1 day, hopefully the weather is will not spoil all the fun.
Legoland is just a short drive from Singapore via the Tuas Checkpoint (when there’s no jam). It’s relatively easy to get there as there are signs along the way. The map on Legoland website is vague and the instructions for driving, too simplified. Then if your GPS is very updated, you probably might find your way there using the given coordinates of N 1 25.642, E 103 37.792. But our Garmin GPS simply cannot find the route and it lead us the wrong way too, but our was probably not updated. It might be easier if you read the map on Google Map before you set off. Streetdirectory Malaysia couldn’t even find the route. Kind of disappointing as it’s my favourite map app for Singapore.
The blue stretch of road is supposedly the 2nd link expressway, and you’ll get on this road straight after you exit the Malaysia checkpoint. You will pass by 1 toll plaza along the way and the same toll plaza when you return. So it would be convenient if you have the Touch and Go card ready (similar to our cash card in Singapore). You can buy it at 1 of the office-like booth somewhere at the Malaysia customs. If I remember correctly, the booth is before you check in to Malaysia but you will probably need to look around for it.
The directions on Legoland says exit at Exit 312 but it’s a bit confusing because there are actually also another exit 312D or something, with an alphabet behind. Don’t exit there, travel further down and you can find the Exit 312 without any alphabet behind. I didn’t managed to find a map that displays Exit 312. So i think this enlarged view should be a rough gauge.
After you exit, the map looks like it’s just going straight, but there’s a confusing roundabout along the way which might get you turning in circles, so you just need to make sure you don’t exit at the wrong turn, aim to go straight and exit at the opposite of the circle. Here’s a closeup view
When you finally reach Legoland, you will be able to see several carparks. If you are early, you can choose anywhere to park that is nearest to Legoland. We found that the Legoland Hotel carpark is the best as it’s the nearest to Legoland. Bad thing is, it’s not free. You need to pay for this carpark. Next best lot could be the one at Medini Iskandar. It’s not exactly that near, but you could drop by 1 of the restaurants/cafes at Medini for breakfast or dinner before or after your trip. And it’s sheltered! But, it’s also not free of charge.
The worst carpark should be the open carparks. These carparks are huge and cheaper. It’s capped at RM7 while medini and the hotel carpark is chargeable by the hour. But it’s under the hot sun, the roads are uneven and when it rains, you potentially need to walk through some water puddles to get to your car. If you need to keep your stroller, or tuck the kids into the car seats, buckle their seat belts and it’s raining, you’ll probably feel like crying.
Rides and Shows (Yes, they have shows!)
The park is quite huge for for a 1 day visit with young kids, considering their nap times. Our usual parts of the park that we would go are Imagination, Lego Kingdom, Lego City and Miniland.
For some reason, every time we come here, it either rains or drizzles. Either that or the sun was too scorching hot that we didn’t really feel like taking photos here. I did take some pictures of the miniature landmarks impressively built by lego pieces. It’s enjoyable just seeing the miniature vehicles moving around or the mini dragon dance. But it would definitely be nicer if the weather was less harsh. So during 1 of the visits, we only managed to take photos here when it’s dark and I think it actually looks nicer than the day view due to he colourful lightings and the nice breeze after the rain.
LEGO KINGDOM – Royal Joust (Horse Ride)
Then comes 1 of Nic’s favourite rides. ‘Horse’ riding. There is a height limit for this ride and Nat couldn’t make the mark. How disappointed was she. This ride is a single kid ride and we were quite impressed Nic rode through without any whines or cries and waving to us along the way. There’s a safety seat belt for the kid and the throttle of the horse is quite mild so it’s quite safe and definitely non scary. It’s also open air throughout so parents can monitor the kid anywhere along the path just to make sure they see us and parents to have a peace of mind.
LEGO KINGDOM – Carnival Games
While the big sister is having fun at riding horse, the small one went nearby to play other games. These carnival games are chargeable but there’s not much choice since the little one was disappointed being too little.
LEGO CITY – Driving Center
Nic’s next favourite ride is at this Junior Driving School. Each kid gets to ride 2 rounds around the circuit. They need to be able to step on the paddle and manoeuvre the steering. Minimum age is 3 years old. Nat could make it but wasn’t really able to drive it. The staff eventually had to help her. Nic was surprising quite steady when it comes to steering and driving around the bends. Proud Daddy moment as Daddy had taught her previously.
The first time Nic took this ride, she got a ‘driver’s licence’ for free. This trip it became chargeable, no Nat didn’t get any. Oops. Sorry Nat, Mummy will make 1 for you instead.
LEGO CITY – Boating School
This is a ride for the whole family, finally. We quite like this ride because the boat is not tied to any fixed rail structure. You can really steer it freely and even bump into other boats or walls. The first time we took this ride, we took our own sweet time and let many other boats overtake us until the staff was signalling us to come back. Oops again.
LEGO CITY – The City Stage
I never really heard or read or seen anyone posting a live performance at Legoland. So we were quite surprised they actually have a live performance. I think the kind of performance changes frequently. We were not able to get a schedule anywhere, not even from the ticketing booth. According to them, the schedule is printed on a daily basis. So if you want to know what shows are there tomorrow, you will have to enquire tomorrow. And we did try, but they still didn’t manage to give us a schedule. Weird.
We were enthusiastic mainly because Nic enjoyed the performance a lot and wanted to watch it for a 2nd time.
They got the kids up to join in the dance. The kids were so excited dancing away with a sparkly pom pom. Nic was still warming up. The music was This time for Africa by Shakira. So catchy, Nic asked me to find the song for her later that day.
We would have thought that the performance was yawning, but to the kids it’s was music and dance and lots of fun. Nic almost took home this trophy she held for photoshoot! If only!
IMAGINATION – Observation Tower
We were lucky on this day that there was absolutely no queue for this ride that day. Usually, the queue is unbelievable. We were here on a weekday, that’s why. It’s a nice relaxing, air-conditioned ride, a cool way to get away from the heat for a while. It’s a total no-thrill ride suitable for everyone in the family to just view Legoland from high up in the air.
IMAGINATION – Build and Test
This is definitely the place to chill off (for the adults), and to take shelter if it rains. The con of it is that there’s a quota for entry to the Build and Test section. They only allow a certain number of kids in at anytime. So you might have to wait for your turn, but it’s ok. There’s another section for building the blocks while waiting for your turn. It’s air-conditioned!
It’s usually crowded so there will be lots of competitors racing their cars. Nic couldn’t take to losing very well yet but will be triumphant when she wins. Mummy is stressed up designing and building the fastest race car for her to win every race. Sweat. Some designs she does win all the races, some designs the car is breaks into pieces. Load of fun. They can be racing a gazillion times here until their physical batteries runs flat. Literally.
Some photos I took on previous trips
IMAGINATION – Sheltered Children’s Playground
The last stop has to be this playground here, if the kids are still energetic and doesn’t seem ready to KO anytime. It’s also a good place to shelter from the rain so it gets really crowded if it rains. It’s also warm inside here when it doesn’t rain. Either way, the kids sweat buckets when they are here so we try to leave it to the last, so we can wash up and go home after that.
No time to explore
These are other areas that we haven’t got time to explore. But since we have the annual pass, we will be back to check them out.
For Mummies and Babies
There is a baby room just opposite the sheltered playground. Only women and children are allowed in. I can’t believe I didn’t take any photos there. I thought I did but I just couldn’t find it. It’s a nice place to chill and take a rest. There are also duplo lego tables and lego sets for children, nursing room, toilets, diaper changing room, arm chairs, baby cot, hot water and food warmer. Well equipped room for mummies and babies.
I think it’s a good idea to do some planning on where to eat before you start the day at Legoland especially when you know it’s going to be crowded. We would usually eat at the nearest eating place we can find when it’s lunch time so sometimes we don’t have much choice on what to eat, unless you walk around until you find a suitable place. But if the kids are hungry and tired, that’s not a good idea. Better to settle them first before the tantrum starts. So plan your visit so you will end up at a eating place that you like.
I remember there was once, we ended up at a small kiosk selling limited malay food with a huge crowd and it was raining. The mood made us totally don’t feel like eating and the food was horrible. Bad choice.
IMAGINATION – Pizza Mania.
Pizza Mania is just opposite the children’s sheltered playground. Pizza here is not bad, if your kids eat pizza. Mine usually don’t but they ate this that day, phew.
LEGO CITY – Market Restaurant
You can find Asian and Western food here. Lots of seats and food’s not bad, but some zircons were leaking water.
The roasted chicken looked yummy but it’s a bit dry.
Fish and chips were normal and not a great hit.
Fruits – you need this after a hot day under the unforgiving sun
Grilled chicken drenched in a generous serving of sauce. This chicken was a hit. The meat is so tender you don’t need effort to tear the meat from the bone. It’s full of flavour and not too dry. Worth a try.
The King’s grill at Lego Kingdom looks interesting but we haven’t tried that yet. Maybe the next time.
Finally, some tips if you are visiting Legoland. Remember your sunblock, hat, fan and towel. It’s useful to have a face mist too to cool you down instantly and avoid being dehydrated. Bring umbrella or ponchos too. You never know when you will be getting the rain. When it rains at Legoland, it pours.
Strollers and lockers are available for rent, but you might want to bring your own in case your kids KO before you reach the car.