Legoland Florida facts for kids
|Location||Winter Haven, Florida, United States|
|Theme||Lego toys and childhood amusement|
|Operated by||Merlin Entertainments|
|General manager||Adrian Jones|
|Opened||October 15, 2011|
|Previous names||Cypress Gardens|
|Operating season||Year Round|
|Area||150 acres (0.61 km2)|
Legoland Florida is a theme park in Winter Haven, Florida. It opened October 15, 2011. The park encompasses 145 acres (0.59 km2), making it the second-largest Legoland park after Legoland Windsor in the UK. Built on the site of the former Cypress Gardens theme park, Legoland preserved the botanical park and redecorated the water park and roller coasters along a Lego theme.
Designed for families with children ages 2 to 12, the park has more than 45 rides, shows, attractions, restaurants, shops; and a botanical garden and a water park. A hotel opened on the property on May 15, 2015.
On January 15, 2010, Merlin Entertainments declared its intention to build a Legoland theme park on the site of the old Cypress Gardens theme park. Six days later, a news conference was held with Florida Governor Charlie Crist and park officials.
After a relatively short construction period (as compared to parks which were built from scratch), Legoland Florida opened on Saturday, October 15, 2011. Three months later, Legoland Florida announced it would add a water park. The former Splash Island water park reopened as Legoland Florida Water Park on May 26, 2012.
Park layout & attractions
More than 50 rides, shows, and attractions are featured in the park based on those at other Legoland parks. The Jungle Coaster ride from Legoland Windsor was moved to the park and renamed Test Track (later renamed again to Project X). Cypress Gardens' botanical park was preserved as part of the park. Also surviving is a vast Banyan tree that was planted as a seedling in a five-gallon bucket in 1939. The Splash Island Waterpark was kept and is a separately ticketed admission. In addition, 4 attractions originally from Cypress Gardens were renovated and renamed: the Triple Hurricane wooden rollercoaster, the Okeechobee Rampage family coaster, and Swamp Thing, a Vekoma family inverted coaster. The Starliner coaster, formerly of the Miracle Strip Amusement Park in Panama City, was dismantled for sale. The Island in the Sky ride was also kept and updated for 2011.
The park has 11 sections:
- Island in the Sky: A 150 feet (46 m) rotating platform ride that provides a 360° view of the park.
- Dragon Coaster: A steel family coaster which features an indoor dark ride portion. Originally called Okeechobee Rampage.
- The Royal Joust: A simulated 'joust' attraction where children ride Lego-themed horses through medieval scenes.
- Merlin's Challenge: A mini Himalaya flat ride.
- The Forestmen's Hideout: A multi-level tree and rope climb.
- Big Rig Rally: A 'semi truck' ride.
- Junior Fire Academy: A 'firetruck' ride.
- Granny’s Jalopies: A Sellner built 'vintage car' ride.
- Duplo Farm
- Factory Tour: A firsthand look at how Lego bricks are made from factory to finish
- Grand Carousel: A two level carousel.
- Wells Fargo Fun Town 4D Theater: A 4D cinema with 700 seats.
- Lego Heroes: An immersive interactive play area based on Lego’s Hero Factory line.
- Built & Test: An exhibit where guests can build a Lego car and test it on the digitally timed track.
- Kid Power Towers: A set of towers where guests can hoist themselves up to the top then enjoy a “free-fall” to the bottom.
- Lego Mindstorms: An exhibit where guests can build and program computerized LEGO MINDSTORMS robots.
Land of Adventure
- Beetle Bounce: Junior drop tower ride.
- Coastersaurus: A Martin & Vleminckx wooden roller coaster
- Lost Kingdom Adventure: An interactive dark ride.
- Pharaoh's Revenge: An interactive play area involving small plastic balls (ball pit balls) moved around by air currents and suction.
- Safari Trek: A jeep ride featuring life-sized LEGO animal models.
- The Big Test: An interactive show using acrobatics, music and play to teach fire safety
- Ford Driving School: A “real-life” driving experience for children ages 6 through 13, where children receive their official Legoland driver’s license with their face on it and watch a video on how to drive. This attraction was created by Ford, hence Ford Driving School.
- Ford Jr.: Junior driving school course for children ages 3 through 5, curated by Ford.
- Flying School: A Vekoma Suspended Family Coaster.
- Boating School: A boat ride where guests can captain their own mini-vessels.
- Rescue Academy: An interactive game where families compete with one another in fire and police vehicles to be the first to put out a simulated “blaze”.
- Miniland New York City: features Rockefeller Plaza, Times Square, Statue of Liberty, Grand Central Terminal, Empire State Building, Guggenheim Museum, and Central Park Zoo.
- Miniland Washington, D.C.: re-created areas include: White House, U.S. Capitol building, Smithsonian Museums, WWII Memorial, Washington Monument, Jefferson Memorial, and parts of Georgetown.
- Legoland Miniland Las Vegas: features a realistic walk through along the Las Vegas Strip from the Welcome to Las Vegas sign, past the Luxor, Excalibur, Mirage, Treasure Island, Tropicana, MGM Grand, Paris, to the Stratosphere tower.
- Florida: features the Florida Keys, the Everglades, Miami, Tampa, Central Florida, Daytona Beach, The Kennedy Space Center, St. Augustine, and the Panhandle.
- Pirates: A pirate themed area featuring miniature Lego pirate ships.
The World of Chima
- Quest for Chi
- Cragger's Swamp
- Speedorz Arena
- The Battle For Brickbeard's Bounty Water Ski Show: A live water action stunt show on Eloise Lake.
- AQUAZONE Wave Racers- a dual water carousel ride.
- Project X- a wild mouse rollercoaster, a car ride that has dramatic turns and drops.
- Technicycle- a pedal-powered spinning machine that shoot riders into the air.
- Mia’s Riding Adventure: A ride with a spinning disc coaster.
- Heartlake Stepping Tones Fountain: Interactive heart-shaped fountain filled with LEGO brick instruments that play real music.
- Stephanie’s News Room: Roleplay a news anchor in front of a camera.
- Friends to the Rescue’ Live Stage Show: A live show where kids are encouraged to dance and sing with LEGO Friends at a concert.
- See also: Cypress Gardens
- Cypress Gardens Botanical Gardens: The original gardens from the former Cypress Gardens park, first opened in 1936. The gardens are owned by Polk County and is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.
Legoland Water Park
- Lego Wave Pool: a gentle wave pool
- Twin Chasers: two 375-foot (114 m) long water slides
- Splash Out: three slides each with a 60-foot (18 m) drop
- Joker Soaker: children's water play area
- Build-A-Raft River: a 1,000-foot (300 m) long lazy river
- Duplo Splash Safari: toddlers water play area
Legoland Florida Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.