LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Melbourne
LEGOLAND is like a mini theme park that includes loads of LEGO inspired fun that will keep the kids busy for literally hours!
When: entry between 9.30am – 4pm Sunday – Wednesday (venue closes at 5.30pm) and 9.30am – 5pm Thursday – Saturday (venue closes at 7pm, gift shop closes at 9pm)
Where: Level 2, Chadstone – The Fashion Capital, 1341 Dandenong Road CHADSTONE (located next to the cinemas)
Cost: From $26 per person, under 3 years are FREE. For all the options and to book tickets, click here.
The LEGOLAND Discovery Centre is like a mini theme park for the under 10’s, celebrating all things LEGO!
It’s much more than building with LEGO (but never fear there is plenty of that too!). To fully appreciate all the Centre has to offer you will need to put aside THREE hours of your day. The first time we visited I had to drag my review team (aged between 8 – 11) out after over three hours. They wanted to experience everything as many times as they could!
So what should you expect? Well, there are about 13 key elements you should factor into your visit.
Groups are admitted into LEGOLAND in small groups – when you arrive you will first have the chance to have a photo in front of the green screen and then you are shown into a smaller room that has control panels (the kids work levers and buttons that interact with the 360degree screen) as we are taken on a “Factory Tour”
MINILAND and KINGDOM QUEST
Once you leave the Factory Tour experience (it goes for about 10 minutes) you have the option of taking a ride on Kingdom Quest (an interactive laser tag ride to save the Princess). If the queue is looking a bit long I highly recommend detouring into Miniland and coming back a bit later (FYI the queue peters out just before the next group exit the Factory Tour).
Miniland is a large room filled with a scale model of Melbourne made out of LEGO! In here you will find all the major iconic Melbourne landmarks complete with residents and opportunities to push a few buttons. About every five minutes or so the sun sets or rises so that you can experience Melbourne at night or daytime. The detail is awesome and the kids and I spent a good 20 minutes in here checking out all the different elements. As you exit LEGOLAND you do have to walk back through Miniland so you will probably need to stop again to admire the work and detail of this very cool installation.
Once you exit Miniland you enter into the main space of LEGOLAND. Here you will find:
This is a play area for the little ones – it’s also located next to a glassed-in seating area if you need to escape the business of the main area (during our first visit this glassed in area was empty making it a lovely quiet space, but the second time we came it seemed the space had been discovered and was full of young families).
MERLIN’S APPRENTICE RIDE
This is not a ride where you sit back and enjoy the wind in your hair – no! This ride requires your pedal power, that is if you want to go higher. The harder/faster you pedal the higher you go. It’s a little puff but only goes for about 2 minutes, so don’t expect a major workout (unless you queue up to go a lot more times!).
LEGO 4D CINEMA
No doubt you’ve been to a 3D movie before but have you experienced 4D? This cinema features a collection of LEGO movies (all about 10-15 minutes in length) that feature some of the favourite LEGO characters… with your 3D glasses on you not only see things leap out of the screen, but when, for example, the dragon sneezes – expect to be covered in spray. And when there is a fire expect smoke and flashing red light – and so on. It was quite a novelty and Immi (11) and I sat through three of these little movies trying to anticipate what effects might happen when – it was a bit of fun… but we did leave slightly damp!
This is basically an indoor playground – my mini reviewers just skimmed the height restrictions for this one (I think 120cm) and thankfully were all wearing socks (this is a shoes off socks on area). No parents are allowed in here, so probably a space for confident 4+ kids. The kids absolutely loved this play area and spent nearly half our visit time in here. Along with climbing and sliding there are also giant size LEGO pieces that the kids were building into a wall… and well a bunch of stuff I couldn’t see!
This area was also a big winner with the kids – here they could build vehicles and then test them on a series of race tracks. Each time their car flew down the track it would be eagerly collected from the bottom, adjustments and improvements made and then it would be sent hurtling down again. Because we had friends with us this added an element of competition to see who could create the fastest and most robust vehicle. My only comment about this area, as an observing parent, was that a few more seats would be great!
Next to the Racers is the Earthquake Tables and these are a great spot to sit and build towers and structures on tables with moving beds – can you build while the table is moving or is your structure sturdy enough to survive an earthquake?
CREATIVE WORKSHOP & PARTY ROOMS
For those who are organised and have the time you can sign up for workshops (on the weekends and holidays there are about 5 sessions a day). To take part in a workshop you need to put your name down on the sheet at the workshop door – there are limited spaces and these workshops fill up FAST (we have been twice and still yet to make it to a workshop). Next to the Workshop room are the party rooms and also the room where the Master Model Builder’s do their creating and building – have a peek and see if anyone is making something!
The onsite cafe has a selection of hot and cold food – with some healthy lunchbox options for the kids (and also the adults). The coffee is okay. You aren’t permitted to bring in your own food (unless you have allergies or a baby) and with no pass outs, it’s vital to plan your visit around snack time and potential purchases at the cafe. You can also purchase socks here if you need them for the indoor playground.
Exit is via the gift shop and LEGO fans will love this gift shop! What an awesome selection of product, some fabulous displays and also the opportunity to purchase LEGO pieces individually. Anyone can visit the shop so it’s worth making a mental note to come back here for birthday and Chrismas gifts.
The venue has toilets with baby change facilities, it’s also wheelchair and pram accessible and there are lockers available to use.