With more than 30,000 LEGO models created out of more than 60 million LEGO bricks, over 60 family rides (including 3 roller coasters), “hands-on” attractions, and shows, LEGOLAND California provides education, adventure, and fun for all ages. Like most other amusement parks, though, it can be costly. We spent the weekend in Carlsbad and created an actual cost assessment for the entire experience including accommodations, dining, entertainment, and transportation. While you can cut back in areas such as dining or accommodations, this will give you a good idea of the true costs associated with spending a weekend at LEGOLAND in Carlsbad, California.
Carlsbad offers a variety of accommodations including hotels on the beach, luxury resorts, vacation rentals, and budget-friendly hotels. You can explore a full list of options at Visit Carlsbad. We stayed at Sheraton Carlsbad Resort & Spa because of it’s private entrance to LEGOLAND and resort amenities like a 24-hour pool and free internet.
A traditional guestroom at Sheraton Carlsbad costs $168 per night including the $14/day Resort Fee. In addition to that cost is a $12/day parking fee. The total cost for two nights is $372 including all taxes and fees.
No matter your tastes or budget, restaurants in Carlsbad offers a wealth of options. We chose to dine out for every meal except for breakfast on Saturday. You could save tons of money in this area if you brought snacks and food from home, especially if you are driving to Carlsbad. Even if you decide to pack a lunch and eat breakfast at the hotel, I’d still suggest trying Granny’s Apple Fries at LEGOLAND.
These were our dining choices along with the total bill for that establishment. Athena, our 3 year old daughter, usually had something off of the kids’ menu and we didn’t order any alcohol.
TWENTY/20 Restaurant at Sheraton Carlsbad
$50 (Kids 3 and under eat free)
We brought breakfast cereal, milk, and breakfast bars with us and ate at the hotel
$20 (Even though we brought this from home, we included it in the cost. $20 reflects the cost of these foods as well as a couple snacks that were in my day bag)
Skyline Cafe at LEGOLAND Hotel
$40 (Athena ordered Mac & Cheese from the Kids’ Menu. It was so delicious that I helped her finish it. Both Darren and Athena ordered water to drink and I had a soda. If you’re not staying at LEGOLAND Hotel, it’s worth it to dine there at least once. You get to see the inside of the hotel and explore the grounds without paying the higher prices. Tip: ride the elevator.)
Granny’s Apple Fries at LEGOLAND
$6 (One order of Apple Fries is $6 and we shared. There was plenty for us to have a taste with just one order.)
Islands Restaurant – 889 Palomar Airport Road, Carlsbad, CA 92011
$40 (The Hawaiian Burger with fresh pineapple, teriyaki sauce, lettuce, tomato, onion, swiss & mayo is always my choice at Islands. Athena ordered from the Kids’ Menu again and I was the only one to order a soda.)
Denny’s 1048 Carlsbad Village Dr, Carlsbad, CA 92008
$35 (We chose Denny’s so I could get lunch and Darren and Athena could order breakfast. It was close to 11 AM so this was our last meal in Carlsbad)
$258 (Buy Online and search for discounts before purchasing. It’s easy to find a coupon for a free child admission with a paying adult. This price is based on all three guests paying so you can save big time here if you do your homework. It’s helpful to ask at your hotel when booking as well. They often offer passes or discounts.)
We had the Hopper Pass, which allowed us to visit LEGOLAND and the Water Park on Saturday and the Aquarium on Sunday. We were busy all weekend and certainly didn’t need any additional entertainment.
Transportation & Gas
$40 (We drove to Carlsbad from Orange County, California. It is about a 45-minute drive. If you’re traveling from another location, this price will obviously change accordingly. Sheraton Carlsbad also offered a complimentary shuttle to the beaches in Carlsbad and within a 5 mile radius.)
Grand Total for a Weekend Getaway to Legoland California
$861 including accommodations, dining, transportation, and activities. This price is based on two adults and one three year old child. (Children ages three and up pay at LEGOLAND.)
There are ways to save hundreds of dollars if you are on a budget but still want to visit LEGOLAND California. Many hotels, like Econo Lodge Inn & Suites, are under $100 a night and tent camping is even an option. Dining at fast food establishments, markets, or bringing packed meals can drastically cut costs and taking advantage of the free amenities is good money-saver too. The tickets to LEGOLAND California are costly but they are on par with other major parks like San Deigo Zoo or Disneyland. Visit Carlsbad is a great resource for planning your trip.
How much do you think a weekend getaway to LEGOLAND California would cost your family? Have you been? Did you go all out or cut costs?
It all adds up quickly, doesn’t it?