I am crazy about theme parks and typically like to go to a theme park or a place with activities for birthday celebrations. LEGOLAND NY recently opened up in Goshen, NY on April 8, 2002. The park is about an hour and a half from NYC. I felt this was the perfect place to celebrate my daughter’s third birthday.
Planning your visit/Things to Expect
The resort is clean and in a spread out area. Unlike many theme parks, this one takes advantage of the greenery of that area. To some it may just seem like it’s not as immersive because there is a bit of spacing. However, I appreciated the greenery. I enjoyed how they used LEGO-based scenes to illustrate what someone might do in the outdoors, like camping. The various lands are arranged in a circle. You have to make a decision whether you will go left or right after the main street, Brick Street. However, once you get into the park there is a Miniland hub that connects you to each of the major lands. They have an app, that has show times, wait times, mobile ordering, and everything you would need to plan your day. This park has special events and fireworks displays, so it may be worth checking out the app ahead of time before going to the resort. Most of the food spots were open the day we went with the exception of Brickolini’s. This mattered because Brickolini’s and Pirates Tavern were some of the only indoor dining areas. There’s also a water park coming to the park that will make this park even more exciting. Most of the staff were friendly and we felt welcomed there. This review does not include details about the hotel. We stayed at the Home2 Suites by Hilton in Middletown.
Everyone enters the park through Brick Street. Like many of the big name theme parks, they have celebration buttons at the gate. The kids got one for being first timers and having a birthday. Brick Street is home to all customer relation needs like photos, gift shop, rentals, and guest relations. Make sure that you set up your photo pass before doing anything else in the park. Brick Street also has 2 attractions, Brick Party and LEGO Rebuild the world. Brick Party is a carousel like no other. In addition to the standard carousel seats, there were stationary seats, rocking seats, and spinning seats. Rebuild the World is one of the first interactive LEGO exhibits you’ll encounter. Throughout the different lands, there will be stations to let your imagination sore with free LEGO play. This one was quite cool because you placed LEGOs on a world and could make your own lands and structures on the world. Don’t forget to stop at The Big Shop on your way out. There are more LEGO sets there than you can imagine.
After Brick Street, we decided to continue onto Bricktopia. Our first ride was the DJ’s Dizzy Disco Spin. We decided to prioritize rides, so we skipped a majority of the LEGO free-play areas and shows. DJ’s Dizzy Disco Spin was wild. It’s very similar to the tea cups, but it felt much faster to me. The main attraction in this land is the LEGO Factory Adventure Ride. It’s a ” dark ride” that’s similar many of the new trackless rides in other theme parks. I enjoyed the ride overall, but I felt the pace was rushed. If I wasn’t told what the ride was about, I likely would have been lost as to what was happening throughout the rooms. For example, my husband thought the ride was broken, but it was actually a part of the ride that was illustrating what it was like to be a LEGO in a LEGO box.
LEGO Ninjago World
Ninjago World was one of our favorite lands. The main attraction in this land was LEGO Ninjago the Ride. Many of the rides in LEGOLAND rival the technology used in other top theme parks. The closest rival to this ride would be the Spiderman Web Slingers ride in Disneyland. Instead of a web shooting action, you did a chopping motion. To my surprise, the quality of the video in the ride was much better. If you haven’t been on either of those rides, it’s basically like being in a life-sized video game. In addition to having a great ride, the land also had opportunities to let your imagination run wild. The gift shop of Ninjago had a plethora of foam weapons and shields. This was exciting because you could use your newly bought merch during the Earth Beat show. My children and husband had the play-fight of a lifetime. I believe they offer a similar experience in the Lego Castle and Lego Pirates lands.
LEGO Castle is a land that is based in Medieval times. This land features the park’s roller coasters. We utilized the Builder’s Guild, a LEGO free play area, in order to keep our kids of different ages busy. This land had rides that had the most height stipulations. I felt that my older kids got the most thrills from this land. I had to skip most of the rides in this land, but I really enjoyed the LEGO Friend’s Nature Trail. It was such a nice touch because you saw the LEGO friends interacting with the natural landscape of the park.
This land proves that regular life as a LEGO can be fun. This land contained practical rides such as Driving School, Coast Guard Academy, and Fire Academy. The Driving School was cool because they split it up between age groups. The kids also received a driver’s license at the end of the ride. I felt sorry for the Junior Driving School operator because they spent most of the time pausing the ride and pulling younger kids from stuck spots on the driving course. The highlight of this land was the LEGO CITY Theater, home to the park’s 4D shows. They had 3 shows that ran continuously. The shows change seasonally. This was a highlight because the sound, picture quality, and water effects were better than most theme parks. My only complaint was that the sound for the Ninjago movie was messed up. Otherwise, the other shows were incredible and it seemed like a fluke.
This was another one of our favorite lands because of the ability to interact with the land and others. This land contained the water rides and is next to the upcoming waterpark area. This land was special because it was the first land that I’ve been to in any theme park where I was encouraged to interact with other guests. Typically, water-rides have an element where you can get wet without getting on the ride. This park took it up a notch by allowing people off the ride to wet people on the rides with water blasters or water explosions. However, it came at a cost. The other guests could wet you back and the explosions typically got the people setting them off more wet. It was so cool. We made friends and people were so happy to have that element of surprise added to their ride. We loved being off the rides and getting others wet. It was so fun and we could have spent hours in that section alone. We had lunch at the Pirates Tavern. The food was decent and the prices were comparable to other theme parks.
This land showcased the magic of LEGO. In this land, you saw LEGO-sized versions of popular cities with special attention to NYC and the Goshen Area. I liked that this land had interactive displays. Below, I’ve included some of my favorite interactive highlights.
I really enjoyed my time at LEGOLAND and felt it was the perfect destination for children ages 3-8 and older if you have a LEGO lover in the bunch. Just be aware that little ones, depending on their height, will likely need an adult companion for most of the rides. My daughter was the only one who could get on all the rides alone and she’s basically the size of an average 9 or 10 year old. Unlike most theme parks, this was truly a place you could have fun without getting on any rides. Many of the poor reviews were due to high crowd volumes and prices. In terms on the crowd volumes, I never recommend going to ANY theme park without being aware that crowds are super high everywhere during these times. We went on a Tuesday and the crowd volumes were perfect. Rain was also forecasted, but never came. If you’re able to plan, ask guest relations (there’s a chat function on the site ) or ask a team member when they typically have the lowest crowds. I do this for all theme parks. I also radically accept that prices are high at any theme park. With that said, this park does allow outside food with the exception of alcoholic beverages and food that will require heating. This park offers alcohol in the park BTW. Moreover, I never pay full price at theme parks. There’s always a deal, so I would look around on the net and the official website before purchasing your tickets. I hope you enjoy this park as much as me and my family did.