Legoland Opens New Aquatic Attraction

Deep Sea Adventure is set within a new land in the park, LEGO City.


It’s summer, and that means new attractions at the local theme parks. For the first time, this summer CV Weekly has expanded the definition of “local” to include such far-off locales as San Diego, with the opening of Electric Eel at SeaWorld. Since San Diego is considered local then Legoland in Carlsbad is even more local with a 114-mile trip that just flies by if you time the traffic right. Of all the theme parks usually covered, Legoland has probably debuted the most new attractions and offerings this summer – a spectacular new ride, an aquarium exhibit and an entirely new hotel resort.

For those unfamiliar, Legoland is a theme park about an hour north of San Diego based on the classic Danish brick toy, Lego. Many of the attractions feature full-size Lego models of animals, vehicles, buildings and characters made entirely out of Lego bricks, designed and assembled by master builders employed at the park full time. Legoland opened in 1999 and features a full theme park, a water park and an aquarium within the resort. The first hotel, the Legoland Hotel, is themed generally to Lego while the newly opened Castle Hotel is themed to the castle/medieval line, one of the oldest themed sets dating back to the late 1970s. The hotel looks like a life-sized castle but made of car-sized Lego bricks. The familiar lion shield and other emblems from the sticker pack accessories that were included with the toy are now emblazoned 10-feet-tall on the side of the building. Walking up to the hotel makes a person feel like one of the Lego minifigures approaching a new play set to stay in for the night. More on the hotel in future issues.


The big story is the recent opening of the newest attraction, Lego City: Deep Sea Adventure. The coolest aspect has to be that it features real sea animals seen from a submarine ride. Though many other parks with a submarine ride only have animated fish or high-tech projections in a dry set with a water sluice track for the ride vehicle, Legoland pumps it up a notch by actually submerging the ride vehicles into a living fish tank with sharks, fish and some of the biggest rays I have ever seen. The interactive ride invites guests to board a submarine and help the Lego divers explore the briny depths in search of sunken treasure. When guests spot some treasure lying on the ocean floor, they tag it on their seat-specific touchscreen to keep a count of all they’ve collected. The sub searches high and low for the treasure, venturing into volcanic vents and along coral reefs as they learn about the sea life before them and collect that treasure.

While most of Legoland is targeted to small children, this ride was fun for everyone. Who doesn’t like getting up close and personal with sharks and bat rays? It’s a unique way to experience a taste of their aquarium exhibits while still in Legoland proper, and a nice little underwater respite from the hustle-and-bustle of the crowds outside.

For those who really enjoy the ocean animal aspect of the ride, the Sea Life Aquarium is one of the parks within the Legoland Resort, and includes exhibits on the California Coast, rays, the San Francisco Harbor and more. From shipwrecks to sand castles, Sea Life Aquarium gives a nice overview of the ocean in our area. And the new exhibit, Sea at Night, gives a glimpse of some sealife farther offshore and the magic of the glowing tides where the luminescent dinoflagellates light up the lapping waves in the dark.

So whether it’s the dinoflagellates, the ride-through aquarium or the Castle Hotel, Legoland has something for every Lego fan. As mentioned before, this resort is targeted mainly at little kids, and they will certainly enjoy it. But for those without kids, it’s hard not to enjoy watching all the happy children have a good time.

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