They say you can never have too many friends or too much money. I would add to that: You can never have too many Legos.
Thank goodness for LEGOLAND, 128 acres of plastic block nirvana, 30 miles north of San Diego, in sunny Carlsbad, California. Especially geared for kids aged 3-10, the place has more Legos than you can shake a stick at – 30 million bricks to be exact.
Think you don't need to leave your living room to see everything a Lego can do? Think again. The park boasts safari treks with life-sized Lego zebras, dinosaur digs with "skeletal remains" just waiting for excavation, giant robots, a diminutive Kennedy Space Center, a Washington, D.C., complete with Capital Hill, New Orleans mid-Mardis Gras, and yellow taxis prowling for fares in Times Square. When they're done gawking, kids can head over to Dino Island for a roller coaster ride, or earn their first "official" driver's license at LEGOLAND's Junior Driving School.
Parents and teachers have been singing the praises of Legos for years now. You know the drill. Legos help kids learn hand-eye coordination. They help them practice patience and creativity. They encourage spatial reasoning. All that aside, once you get past the stage where swallowing is a worry, they're just plain fun.
The park is a perfect fit for kids that may be too young for Disneyland. There are special areas for preschoolers. And the whole experience is a lot less frenetic. For those with older children, there are a few coasters to keep them busy. And being California, there are also plenty of places for the whole family to get soaking wet on a hot day.
So if Southern California is on your vacation agenda, consider a stop at LEGOLAND. The lines can be long. The tickets are far from cheap. But it's not every day you get to see the Amazon rainforest or ancient Egypt, let alone in plastic.
Children (3-12) $43.00
(NOTE: Costco and AAA often offer discounts)
For more information, go to www.legoland.com.