(Also check out Part I.)
LegoLand day two began with a double rainbow sighting:
We snarfed our hotel’s hot breakfast, spent another easy morning at the room, and got to the park when it opened at 10.
The first thing Will wanted to do was build something, but Lucy wasn’t at all interested in that. We knew this would happen, so we already had a strategy: each kid took turns spending time with each adult, which freed us from trying to stay together all the time, and allowed each of them the choice of which rides they go on. We put the kids in charge of our time in the park for the most part.
This morning, Lucy and Becky took off for some rides, and Will and I spent 90 minutes building a race car and exploring. Here’s Lucy, loving the first ride of the day:
And Will, with his creation. (His future, apparently, is very bright.)
You’ll be seeing a lot of those ID bracelets. We stopped by the guest services desk as soon as we entered the park, and wrote our phone numbers on a bracelet for each kid. They were instructed that, if they got separated from us, they should find a park employee and show them the bracelet.
We tried to push towards Castle Hill, but after seeing this, Will wouldn’t move an inch until we did it.
Then we passed Cargo Ace, and Lucy’s sterling recommendation (and a short line) meant we HAD to ride them. Again.
The longest line of the entire trip was for the Dragon coaster, which was Will’s first-ever real coaster ride, and which he still talks about. This was one of the few rides that Lucy wasn’t tall enough to ride, but she wasn’t interested anyhow. If you squint, you can see our intrepid adventurers in the center winged car:
After this, we found a gigantic fortress playground. There were a hundred platforms, with ladders and stairs and net ramps and tunnels and slides, and the kids went goggly-eyed as soon as we could see it. We sent them both in, and camped out near the only entrance. About 45 minutes later, the kids emerged, hand in hand, ready for the next challenge.
Which was lunch. Park food is notoriously expensive, but what can you do? They don’t allow outside food, and while we cheated a bit with some snack food, there was no smuggling in a picnic lunch (the backpack is full of raincoats, sunscreen, and water bottles).
At this point, we reached the parts of the park we had seen the day before. Again, the kids were in charge of deciding which rides we took, so it was back to Skipper School!
We came to the watery free-play area we had seen the day before, and the kids tried to quench the thirst of plastic alligators.
Then we split up again. Lucy and I took a boat ride through some fairy tales, while Will went back to earn his third “driver’s license.”
Now we reached the front gates, and had an hour left until the park closed. Hey, look: an aquarium!
Now it really was closing time. We gave each kid 10 minutes and a 10-dollar limit in the gift shop to find something to bring home with them. Lucy chose a tiny stuffed panda, and Will chose a big foam sword which he had to carry on the plane (as it wouldn’t fit in any of our luggage).
We got back to the hotel, fed two very tired kids some dinner, and while Becky was reading them to sleep, I grabbed us a tasty burger at the In-N-Out I saw on the drive. Both kids were comatose when I got back at 7.
The next morning, I took the kids for a walk to get coffee while Becky packed, then it was off to the beach. We arranged our flights so that we would have this extra time; we arrived in San Diego around noon, and didn’t take off for Portland until two. This is La Jolla Shores Park, which was a short detour from our drive to the airport.
Overall, we had a great time. The park is perfectly suited to kids this age: Lucy’s 37-inch stature was enough to get her onto most of the rides, and there were maybe three that Will couldn’t ride. We couldn’t have planned a better last-minute vacation, and the kids are already asking about “when we go back to LegoLand.”