If you’re looking for a fun family day out in Birmingham I wholeheartedly recommend the LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Birmingham.
This week I took Nova (4) and Kit (2). They’re not really into LEGO, but they absolutely loved it here. Like, didn’t-want-to-leave kind of love. If you’ve got toddlers and pre-schoolers then it’s well worth a visit. I mean, they do have adult nights, so I guess you could go without kids too!
Legoland Discovery Centre Birmingham
So, what’s to love? It’s super cheap! Family days out can all too often become super expensive, but that isn’t the case here. If you visit during the week and outside of school holidays – which is totally doable with toddlers and pre-schoolers – you can buy a joint adult and under 5 ticket for just £10. £10 and you can stay all day if you really want to, so I’d call that very good value.
If you have older ones or commitments, a weekend ticket starts from £15 (if you book ahead online), so even still it’s not too pricey.
Given the cheap entry I thought it might be a bit naff or my two would lose interest given they don’t really play with LEGO at home, but that wasn’t the case at all.
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What’s at Legoland Discovery Centre Birmingham?
Just shy of 60,000 square feet, the LEGOLAND Discovery Centre in Birmingham is an indoor play place. There’s no need to worry about the weather as it’s all housed in one building.
There are a few rides;
The laser gun one where you have to rescue the princess whilst travelling in a moving cart. It’s a bit like the Buzz Lightyear shooting one at Disney.
You can fit 5 in a cart and children can ride as long as they can sit unaided. It was really fun to be able to enjoy this ride as a family.
Merlin’s Apprentice Ride
The moving one where you have to pedal to make your cart fly higher. It’s a bit like the flying aeroplanes at Thomas Land.
This ride is for bigger children (over 3ft), so Kit missed out and although Nova passed the minimum height he couldn’t reach the pedals enough to do that bit. He still loved it though and I got a work out.
It’s worth bearing in mind that on some days (like when we visited) the rides only operate at certain times, usually for an hour, running about three times a day.
Tip: Take a snap of the schedule when you go through admissions or look out for the schedule by the rides.
And there’s also a 4D cinema.
Don the free glasses, pick a chair and watch a short LEGO movie. Characters ‘pop out’, water sprinkles on you when a splash happens and so on.
What’s great is that the cinema style seats are geared towards little ones. Kit is dinky, but managed to sit without a booster or being sandwiched between the seat.
And the movie is short enough to keep toddlers entertained.
Just like the rides, on the day we visited the showings were spread at three different intervals in the day.
What’s better than soft play? Soft play that’s gated and that you can see from your seat.
Right in the hub of all the activity there’s a small soft play area, with a tunnel, various things to climb over/in/on and a giant crane to drive. And yes, parents can join in too.
There are a few racetracks to test out your newly built LEGO cars and trucks. And obviously, loads of buckets of wheels, bricks and more.
Kit loved watching Jay build a car and then racing it down the slopes. There’s also an interactive 4-way track where you can race against each other. It’s such a simple, but fun idea for part of a family day out in Birmingham.
Recommended Reading: Your Guide to Warwick Castle (Another Merlin activity)
There’s a padded section with DUPLO pits to play with, which is ideal for younger ones. There’s also a small slide here and throughout the day Story Time takes place here.
We listened to The Very Hungry Caterpillar and the children got involved, feeding the DUPLO caterpillar the bricks.
Tip: If you’re visiting with multiple children of different ages, the main hub is ideal as you can sit in the middle while they play in their favourite ‘zones’. For example, littles can play in the DUPLO, whilst you’ll still be able to see older ones at the racetracks.
Miniland is what you’d probably guess it is; miniature buildings and scenes created from LEGO. What makes it stand out is it’s really interactive.
There are various buttons to press, games to play, tunnels to crawl through. And it’s all at the right height for little ones.
The lights dim and brighten to mimic a day cycle, there are sound effects and it really is engaging for mini-explorers.
Recommended Reading: Your Guide to Thomas Land
Nova’s favourite making station was the earthquake zone. Here you can build whatever you like on the pad, then press a button to stimulate an earthquake and see if your build can withstand the tremors.
You can notch the intensity up, which he loved. But what I loved is that it got his mind thinking about things. He casually asked me about buildings, earthquakes and the world whilst we put those little bricks together. Like a little informal bonding and learning session.
So, What Else is to Love?
The stuff for parents. Free wifi with no annoying registration form or patchy service. Access to decent coffee from Costa. Kid-height sinks.
It’s baby-friendly, so there are high chairs, and everywhere is flat, spacious and smooth so ideal for buggies.
Is There Anything Not to Love?
The main annoying thing (and frankly unacceptable in 2019 in my opinion) is that there are only baby-changing facilities in the women’s toilets. There’s no stand alone change table or one in the men’s. Surely it’s not that hard to add one.
Sometimes the rides started a little later than listed in the schedule. Nothing too drastic, but when you’re trying to keep a little one in the queue it’s a little annoying. It could have just been a blip on our family day out in Birmingham, rather than a regular thing.
How Long Do You Need at Legoland Birmingham?
The recommended length is 2-3 hours. We stayed for three hours, which gave us enough time to enjoy all of the rides, activities and lunch. However, to be honest we could have stayed much longer.
Both Nova and Kit wanted to stay and would have happily done the whole lot again.
Tips for Legoland Discovery Centre Birmingham
- Book a midweek slot for this family day out in Birmingham. And for when it opens. We went at 10am on a Monday and there were only two other guests for the first hour. By 11am a few school trips arrived, but even then it was quiet and the longest we queued for a ride was five minutes.
- Give the baby-change bag to mama (there are no facilities in the men’s loos).
- If you like aquariums Sea Life is just a short walk away and you can buy a combi-ticket which gives you discount. When we arrived we were offered an add-on ticket for just £5 (it was £10 online).
- Take a photo of the schedule when you enter, so that you can make sure you get to enjoy all of the activities and rides.
- If Birmingham isn’t close to you, consider the Manchester Discovery Centre or one of the worldwide ones. There are 19 LEGOLAND Discovery Centres in total.
- You’ll have to exit through the gift shop, so either have your money or chosen excuse at the ready!
Saturdays & School Weekday Holidays: 09.30-19.00
Off-Peak (school term time) Fridays: 10.00-19.00
Off-Peak (school term time) Monday-Thursday: 10.00-15.00
Check their website before visiting as sometimes there are variances due to events or groups.
Tickets and More
You can buy tickets and find out more about this family day out in Birmingham here.
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