This latest article, taking a look at LEGOLAND Discovery Center in Schaumburg, is written by a new contributor! Annie lives in Geneva with her husband and active daughter, age 4. They enjoy exploring various activities and play places and are always looking for something new and different to do. For her first review for Go West, she wrote about her experiences at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago.
Name of the indoor play place, address and parking information:
LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago is located at The Streets of Woodfield, next to Woodfield Mall at the intersection of Higgins Road and Martingdale Road. The address is 601 N. Martingale Rd, Schaumburg, Illinois. Parking is available in the free parking facility located across from AMC Loews Movie Theater.
When is LEGOLAND open?
LEGOLAND is open 365 days a year. Regular hours are Mondays through Fridays 12 p.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Allow two to three hours for your visit. No-entry is allowed after you leave. The last entry is at 5 p.m. Check the website for days the Center may have extended hours.
What is the admission cost?
The Online Saver Ticket is $14.25 per person if you buy online 24 hours in advance and select the date and time. At the door, the price is $19.
The Extra Value Package is $20.40 and you receive a LEGO Collectible. This package is available online only and you must select a date and time of entry.
The Ultimate Flexi Ticket is $30 and you receive a Lego Collectible. This package is available online only and you can visit any day or time you want.
If you visit after 3 p.m. on a weekday, you can book online for $14.25.
When you book online, you are guaranteed entry. There are a limited number of visitors that can be in the Center at one time. Adults must be accompanied by a child to visit the Center. Children age 2 and under are free.
An annual pass for 12 months of unlimited entry, access to exclusive events and discounts is $40 per person. The pass pays for itself after three visits. For more information on a pass for LEGOLAND and other affiliated attractions in North America as well as group passes, visit the LEGOLAND website.
When is the best time to go? When might it be least crowded?
After 3 p.m. on a weekday is less crowded than other times of the day. There is a discounted price at the door for $14.25. Regular ticket price at the door is $19.
Are there public bathrooms? Is there a changing table? Is there a private place to nurse a baby?
There are public bathrooms, family restrooms and full baby changing facilities. The Center is wheelchair and stroller accessible.
Are you allowed to bring in outside food and drink? Is there a designated snack area? Is food sold there?
LEGOLAND does not allow families to bring in their own food or drinks. If someone in your family has a severe food allergy or dietary restriction, they do allow that individual to bring in his or her own food. There is a Café with fresh coffee, cold snack options such as salads, sandwiches, chips, candy granola bars and bottle drinks. The Café is centrally located and allows you to sit and watch your kids play.
Can you tell us a bit about your experience? Why you decided to go and what you thought?
We were looking for something fun and different to do on a day the school district had off, and I had heard really great things about LEGOLAND. It’s just far enough away for us that I felt we would need to make it a day trip.
To get the most out of the no-school day adventure we would embark upon, I decided to do a little research in advance. From what I had gathered by perusing their website, there are 12 attractions at LEGOLAND. When reading about these attractions, I felt a little overwhelmed! Would we be able to experience everything? Once there, I was relieved to see that LEGOLAND wasn’t as big as I had expected it to be. Many of the attractions were located in the same area and could be easily visited one after the other.
Along with trying to maximize time, I’m also all about finding a great deal whenever possible. To get the best price and guaranteed entry, we purchased our tickets online 24 hours in advance at $14.25 per person. There were three of us, so together we saved roughly $15. At time of purchase, we were asked to select a date and time of entry, two were available, either 12:30 or 3 p.m. We chose 12:30 p.m.
A free parking garage is conveniently located across from the AMC movie theater and there was ample parking even on a no-school Friday. LEGOLAND was a short walk from the parking structure, which was nice on such a cold day.
Once inside, there is a Lego store and a small display where kids can build with the Legos. This area became a source of joy for my 4-year-old daughter and a blessing for me as we waited 10 minutes for my friend to arrive.
After my friend arrived, we waited in a line designated for those who purchased tickets ahead of time and waited just a short few minutes. You can either print tickets or show the tickets on your mobile device.
I liked that in order to be admitted into the Center, you have to be accompanied by a child. As a parent, this puts me a little bit more at ease in a public play area.
What I was surprised not to see at entry was a coat rack and lockers. They did have one, but we had to walk through four attractions to get there. So it was a half hour later before we came upon it and there are not many lockers. We did get the last locker and the Center had only been open an hour.
Miniland is the first attraction and it is quite impressive. Downtown Chicago was magnificently built out of legos. From the John Hancock building, to the Willis Tower, to the Water Tower, to The Bean and many architectural structures in between. The land changes from day to night, making it a truly fascinating display.
From there, we walked into a jungle! After seeing a life-sized Indiana Jones made out of Legos, my daughter quickly grabbed my hand and asked to be held. She said she was afraid there might be booby traps. I guess darkness and animal noises made it a little too scary for this little 4 year old. It was another spectacular attraction with tigers, hippos, alligators and swinging monkeys. Luckily, we could quickly scoot through for my daughter’s sake.
Next came Kingdom Quest, an adventure ride that equips you with laser guns to shoot trolls and skeletons, so you can save the princess. This was my daughter’s favorite attraction. I think she felt safer with a tool to protect herself from the beastly creatures and having the mission to save a princess.
We also saw an interactive “Star Wars” attraction, featuring R2D2, Darth Vader and the Millennium Falcon.
Now we were finally able to shed our coats, which was desperately needed at this point. My daughter had worked up an appetite also and we headed upstairs to the cafeteria and bought a bite to eat. She then played in the sizable pirate boat and built a car out of Legos and sent it down a racetrack. These attractions surround the cafeteria, so I could sit at a table and easily keep an eye on her as she played. Merlin’s ride is also located this his area. It is a very cute pedal ride that flies in the air.
After all that play, my daughter was ready to sit and watch a short 4D film. As my friend and I waited in line for the movie, my daughter built a house in Heartlake City. I liked that I could see her from where we stood and she was happily occupied. A different movie runs every 15 minutes, so you could see more than one if you like. The 4D animation was spectacular with a cute story and Lego characters. You do get to feel the special effects of water, ice and cold wind! It did get a little cold in the theater. The sprinkles of water and ice woke us up for sure. I would say the water was more refreshing than overpowering. Overall, I give it two thumbs up.
We ended our adventure in the Lego store again amazed by all the Lego sets one could build. It was definitely an inspiring experience. We spent three hours of fun there and definitely plan to go back.