Guide and itinerary for parents traveling to Southeast Asia’s LEGO wonderland
If your kids are like ours, LEGO play happens a lot in your family. (In fact, when we packed up our stuff to start our full-time world travels, the kids kept all their LEGOs.) You might also have considered visiting, or perhaps are a fan of visiting, LEGO’s incredible theme parks around the world. Here’s our LEGOLAND Malaysia review, complete with our on-the-ground, parent-tested tips.
Where does LEGO have theme parks?
The Denmark-based company actually has 10 LEGOLAND Parks throughout Europe, North America, and Asia:
Our entire family loves LEGOs. We parents have fond memories as playing with LEGOs as kids. We also take time to build and make believe with the kids. LEGOLAND Malaysia presented us with a space devoted to imagination and creativity. Every inch of the park’s 76 acres is full of wonder, engaging details, and fun rides. Along with opportunities to tuck into some bricks and build, LEGOLAND Malaysia offers an excellent value for a traveling family.
Why go to LEGOLAND Malaysia with kids?
When traveling to Southeast Asia, going to LEGOLAND Malaysia with kids is an experience that bridges cultures. Whether it’s a child like Aster or a group of school kids on a field trip from Kuala Lumpur, kids all over the world love LEGO.
Throughout our time in LEGOLAND Malaysia, we felt safe and welcomed, and left full of creativity and with our imaginations inspired.
What passes or tickets are available?
LEGOLAND Malaysia has a variety of passes and tickets, including day passes, annual passes, and more, plus discounts for kids. Of course, terms and pricing vary, so check the LEGOLAND Malaysia website for the most current details.
We would spend a week in Johor Bahru, all for exploring LEGOLAND Malaysia. And oddly enough, we decided not to buy day passes. With day-of-visit park re-entry plus discounts on food and shopping, we bought one-year, single-park annual passes for the entire family. Besides the theme park, LEGOLAND offers a water park and aquarium, so single, double, or triple-park passes are also an option.
Where to stay in LEGOLAND Malaysia and Johor Bahru
After Kuala Lumpur, Johor Bahru is the second-largest city in Malaysia. It’s lies on the southern end of Malaysia, just across the Johore Strait from Singapore.
Vacation rentals, hotels, and other accommodation abound throughout the area. We rented a vacation rental apartment. From our balcony, we could see Singapore. In the elevator, we could see LEGOLAND Malaysia itself!
Some accommodation is within easy walking distance of LEGOLAND Malaysia, such as the LEGOLAND Malaysia Hotel. The LEGO-themed lobby alone is worth the stay. Two LEGO-themed play areas feature structures of a castle tower and a pirate ship. A moat full of LEGO bricks surrounds each one. Murals wrap around the elevator interiors—and while you ride, a disco ball spins along to the signature The Lego Movie anthem, “Everything Is Awesome.” When you’re ready for LEGOLAND itself, the park is meters from the resort’s back door.
Here are other Johor Bahru accommodation options near the park and in the JB area:
When’s a good time to visit LEGOLAND Malaysia?
Malaysia has a tropical climate, and different parts of the country have monsoon conditions at different times of year. Check conditions and recommendations for Johor Bahru though, not for Kuala Lumpur. The monsoon comes to each at different times of year. What’s true for KL might not be true for JB.
- It’s going to be hot, muggy, and sunny, kind of like Orlando, except all year.
- March through May is the driest time of year.
- November through February in the JB area can be prone to monsoon rains. It’s still a great time to visit LEGOLAND Malaysia.
Personally, we loved visiting the park in January. We encountered one hard rain. Only one other, brief, time did we pull out our rain jackets. While we can’t speak to how the park’s attendance varies throughout the year, during our week, crowds were typically light. Occasionally, there were larger groups or longer lines. Often, we could board an attraction with little to no wait.
Check for limited park hours or closures
Check for days when the park is closed or might have limited hours. When we visited LEGOLAND Malaysia, it was closed on Wednesdays. We used that as a rest day. A closed day also presents an opportunity to experience the JB area’s other attractions and destinations.
About those monsoon conditions
“Monsoon” doesn’t mean endless rain all day. Typical monsoons rain down hard for an hour or two. You could plan a day at LEGOLAND Malaysia around a forecasted monsoon. Rumbly skies are opportunities for downtime in your room, or an indoor meal, show, or build.
That said, March through May is drier in this part of Malaysia. November through February can be more prone to monsoons. For the week that we were in JB, we only had one big monsoon downpour. It also just was when we were smack in the middle of the park. Did we get a little wet? Sure. Did a big rumble of thunder scare the heck out of us? Sure. Now that LEGOLAND thunderstorm is nothing but a fun story.
The short of it? Understand the typical weather for a time of year and prep accordingly. We made sure we had our rain jackets, but in Malaysia’s steamy climate you might prefer umbrellas.
How is LEGOLAND Malaysia organized?
As you approach the park, you’ll go through a quick security check and bag search. Then you reach the Beginning, and the ticket and information windows.
Through the entry turnstiles, you’re on the covered plaza. Surrounded by shops and cafes, this area is also your hub for park information, a lost and found, and restrooms. The plaza is also the park’s epicenter for special events. We were there during the Lunar New Year season. The plaza was home to performances, themed LEGO builds, dances, instrument and toy try-outs, and other occasions honoring the Lunar New Year.
Lands and zones include:
To help us get around, we downloaded the LEGOLAND Malaysia map PDF to our phones.
How is the food?
LEGOLAND Malaysia attracts visitors from all over the world. Their restaurants reflect that accordingly. The park is home to 10 restaurants, spread throughout the different lands and zones.
If you are looking for theme park faves or want to try out different global foods, cuisine galore awaits throughout each zone. One location might have excellent Singapore chicken and rice. Another had a tasty pizza. We could pick from Malay foods, or also snag burgers, fries, or chicken sandwiches. Since Malaysia is primarily a Muslim nation, pork isn’t on the menu, but beef and chicken are.
We had originally considered leaving the park for meals at the nearby shopping center. However, the food throughout LEGOLAND Malaysia was tasty and well-priced. We dined at the park instead.
Hint: The Solero lime and vanilla frozen pops are delicious and refreshing. They quickly became a family favorite.
Can you bring in snacks and drinks? What about water bottles?
Technically, no, you cannot bring in your own snacks and drinks and such. However, with so much affordable, diverse food, this is not a big deal.
We brought in our stainless steel, insulated, refillable water bottles, which are not a problem. While there are not water fountains around the park, we bought bottled water and poured it into our bottles to keep it cold.
How do you pay for things at LEGOLAND Malaysia?
Malaysia’s currency is the ringgit (pronounced like “ring it”). At the time of our visit, 4 ringgit equaled 1 US dollar. We kept some ringgit on hand, and there’s an ATM at guest services near the main entrance.
Typically, we had no problem paying with a credit card. Our Venture X took care of most of our purchases (and earned us rewards points), including our annual passes, food, and drink. And some LEGO sets for the kids. Along with some family minifigs that we made ourselves. Just maybe.
What are the attractions like?
There’s a mix of attractions in LEGOLAND Malaysia. While Technic and Kingdoms are home to a couple of roller coasters, there are no intense thrill rides. (The kids even got Anthony onto one coaster, called Dragon’s Apprentice, in Kingdoms. He was pretty pale after, but recovered while the kids took more rides.
In Technic, Aster especially loved The Great LEGO Race roller coaster, and Connor was ready to move into the Aquazone Wave Racers. Hint: Be ready to get at least a little wet on rides such as Wave Racers and Land of Adventure’s Dino Island. Fortunately, the tropical climate can dry you out. Eventually.
Rides aren’t the only attractions. Touring the miniature structures in MINILAND was a highlight of our last day. Our favorite? The LEGO brick rendition of Angkor Wat, which we had visited the month before. (We got extra joy and laughs when a small black cat suddenly whooshed out of the LEGO Angkor’s front gate, but we suppose you can’t expect that every time.)
Can I tie in visiting LEGOLAND Malaysia with visiting Singapore or Kuala Lumpur?
There are many ways to get to Johor Bahru and LEGOLAND Malaysia. As both the capital and Malaysia’s largest city, Kuala Lumpur is a natural hub. Flights and trains are available to JB. You could arrive in KL, visit the city and surrounding area, then head to JB. Instead of coming back to KL when leaving Malaysia, consider booking a departure flight out of JB or Singapore.
We found it easier to fly to Singapore. Our flight arrived in the afternoon, and US citizens can get a visa on arrival.
Special buses go from Changi Airport to JB. The ride across Singapore gave us a chance to see a slice of this incredible island-city-nation as well. When taking the bus, you’ll get out at a checkpoint, take all your luggage with you, and officially exit Singapore via immigration. From there, get back on a bus. Your ticket will tell you buses you can get on for no additional fare. Once you cross into Malaysia, you disembark at a checkpoint for entry into Malaysia.
From the checkpoint in JB, LEGOLAND Malaysia is about 20 minutes away via taxi or a car hire via the Grab app.
Tips for a family
When traveling with more people, it’s worth examining transportation options. We took a bus from Changi Airport to JB, then a Grab car to our accommodation. Traveling from Johor Bahru to Singapore, however, we realized that for about the same money, we could hire a private van.
They picked us up at our accommodation in JB, drove us through the land border crossing checkpoints for Malaysia and Singapore, and dropped us off at our hotel. The convenience and lower stress were wonderful.
Traveling as a family of four, sometimes we use local trains and buses to get around. We compare hiring a car too. Since we have four people traveling together, there are many times we’ve found the price tag is about the same, plus we gain some convenience and time.
Do women and girls have to cover their hair?
For women and girls, covering their hair is optional in Malaysia, where Islam is the official religion. In our experience, most of the women we saw covered their hair. Some girls did, and some did not.
Jodie and Aster were not required to cover their hair, and had no pressure to do so.
What are good ways to organize a visit to LEGOLAND Malaysia?
Depending on how many days you’re at the park, you can come up with different ways to visit not only each area, but places your family prioritizes.
Our first day focused on Technic and Kingdom. We sampled most of the park to understand the layout. Over the next few days, we honed in on different lands. We also revisited any favorite attractions or made time for builds, shows, and other events.
Here’s how we organized our week at LEGOLAND Malaysia
Typical park hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and the park is usually closed on Wednesdays. This opening hours calendar broke down what was open when, so it was easy to plan our days.
LEGOLAND Malaysia has a nice sweet spot. It’s big enough to have plenty to do over multiple days. However, it’s small enough to get around easily, without feeling like you spend all day going back and forth.
Here are highlights of how our family of four organized our time and our overall experience in our LEGOLAND Malaysia review.
Day 0: Arriving in Johor Bahru
We arrived in Johor Bahru the night before our first park day. After a long day flying from Vietnam, crossing Singapore overland, and entering Malaysia, we arrived at our rental apartment exhausted. However, our rental came with quite the bonus: from our balcony, we could see the northern skyline of Singapore.
Not only that. From our building’s glass-walled elevator, the bright colors of LEGOLAND Malaysia gleamed. We could walk from our front door to the park entrance in about 10 minutes. That proximity gave us options.
Day 1: Plaza, Technic, Kingdoms, and a scheduled build
Since we were staying so close to LEGOLAND Malaysia, and since the park wasn’t open until ten, we could enjoy a relaxed morning. Using the Grab app’s food delivery options, Jodie ordered us soup dumplings, shrimp shumai, yam and bbq pork dumplings. Well rested and fully breakfasted, we arrived at the entrance ready for a full first day.
Getting our LEGOLAND annual passes
Lines were short, but getting annual passes takes longer than snagging a regular day ticket. It only took about 10 or 15 minutes to get our annual passes sorted. Staff needed to check some paperwork, take photos of each of us, and process our payment with our trusty Venture X card. Still, before we knew it, the friendly, competent folks working at the ticket counter were handing us our passes—and we were heading into the park.
Plaza full of celebration
Our visit coincided with the lead-up to the Lunar New Year. Once through the turnstile, we found ourselves in a plaza full of activities celebrating the coming Year of the Rabbit. On a raised stage, dancers leaped and stepped. At a nearby table, kids worked on special rabbit-themed LEGO builds, and from another we could try out instruments and toys.
Around the park
Since it was our first full day, we wanted to get acquainted with the entire park. The area around MINILAND was under renovation, but we could wander other areas.
Technic is first out of the Beginning plaza, and it became a favorite for the kids. We spun over the water on the Aquazone ride. The Great LEGO Race roller coaster initially gave Aster pause. once she realized it had only one sizable dip, she tried it out. Not only did she enjoy the coaster, she rode it daily.
After lunching in Kingdoms, the kids tried out the Dragon Apprentice roller coaster. We noted the nearby shop for potential souvenir finds later in the week.
Clouds had gathered, though. While the kids romped in a large play structure, a thunderstorm started gushing, flashing, and booming down. We stayed undercover at the playground for a while. However, the kids and Anthony braved a soaking as they dashed down for the children’s appointment at nearby Mindstorm.
The air-conditioned space inside Mindstorm helped us dry out and cool off. While the kids programmed robots together on a space-themed LEGO build, the rest of the rain passed. Back outside, we returned to Kingdoms for the high-speed, undulating joust carousel. Then we headed to the up-and-down Beetle Bounce and the immersive, blast-the-baddies NINJAGO ride.
And when we were ready for another indoor cooldown, the inside free-form creative spaces at Rebuild gave us vast LEGO stockpiles to craft with.
Day 2: City, Adventure, and licensed drivers
The British accent on the train in the Malaysia theme park still makes us chuckle. Especially when it kept apologizing for being twelve seconds late.
The train that runs through LEGOLAND Malaysia showed us more of the park, but we could sit back and relax. Riding by MINILAND, we stared at the amazing scale and detail of the Taj Mahal, Angkor Wat, and even Malaysia’s principal city, Kuala Lumpur.
Today we focused on the LEGO City. Connor and Anthony drove boats. Then both kids attended the LEGO driving school racetrack ride, and left with their own wee driver’s licenses.
Another stint on the Aquazone gave us a break from the hotter, muggier day—especially when Connor blasted Anthony with some of the button-generated “water bombs.”
While Jodie and Aster rode the Great LEGO Race roller coaster, Connor went to Rebuild on his own. Then the kids conspired to get Anthony to ride the Dragon’s Apprentice coaster with them.
They did not succeed.
Day 3: Dad and kids’ day at the show
Jodie had loved two days at LEGOLAND. She gets around with the aid of a prosthetic leg, which makes walking all daymore strenuous. While she enjoyed downtime at the apartment, Anthony, Aster, and Connor took a dad and kids day at the park.
Anthony and the kids are also fans of the animated series Miraculous, where people can gain superhuman abilities via charms. Before the entrance, Anthony handed each child their annual pass.
“This is the miraculous of the brick,” he said. “You will use its power for the greater good, then return it to me once we have crossed the barrier.”
Inside the park, we started with a show.
As intense pre-show music played for the Realm of Shadows NINJAGO puppet show, Aster nodded and said, “This is violin.”
After finding out what would happen to Bandit the dragon, we headed from the theater back to City, for the Airport and the Rescue Academy. Connor went off to Technic on his own, while Aster and Anthony played at Shipyard.
When Connor came back, he was soaked—and had done plenty of soaking—on Aquazone again. As he blasted water bombs, he loved to shout, “Those plastic parkas won’t save you!”
Returning to Kingdoms, the kids rode Dragon’s Apprentice—and resume their campaign of trying to get Anthony to ride.
“You wouldn’t want me to ride today,” he replied. “Not without Mama being here to watch.”
Day 4: Land of Adventure, Imagination, and a special day to celebrate
For our next-to-last day at LEGOLAND Malaysia, all four of us returned for a special day.
Our time in Malaysia was part of traveling full time for at least a year. And this day marked exactly 150 days since we had left our home in Oregon. As we made our way toward Land of Adventure, we talked about our gratitude for the people who’ve welcomed us and the experiences we’ve shared.
And then Jodie and Aster got soaked.
Land of Adventure’s Dino Island is the park’s wettest attraction, especially depending on where you sit in the log flume-style ride. It also—luckily for Anthony—had a viewing platform. From his overlook above the rails and water, he could see exactly when the cart slid down its slope, hit the water, and drenched both Jodie and Aster.
Land of Adventure gives kids a chance for big movement, not to mention a little blasting fun. The kids taunted Anthony into joining them inside the two-level, net-walled Pharaoh’s Revenge. Though perhaps it could be “Pharaohs Children’s Revenge.” Air cannons above and below fire soft balls all over the complex—just enough for the kids to blast Anthony with a few salvos.
Imagination and terror
The water fountain plays music, depending on where you move and step. Notes of violin and saxophone floated into the humid air. So did our giggles, as we tried to figure out the right spot to activate each instrument around the Musical Fountain.
LEGOLAND’s Imagination zone is also home to a vast, fenced, covered play area, just right for getting some shade while Aster romped in a safe space. While she climbed and ran around the play structures, her brother designed, built, and tested race cars in the nearby Build & Test.
After exploring Imagination, the kids wanted to return to Kingdoms—and Dragon’s Apprentice. Short lines meant they could just about walk right onto the ride. After they rode it twice, they walked out—only to find Anthony coming toward them.
“You won’t make me walk to it alone, will you?” he said. While Anthony does not like roller coasters, this one was pretty tame, with only a couple of drops and no upside-down stuff.
“You’re going to go on it?” Aster asked.
“As a one hundred and fifty days of travel treat,” said Anthony. Aster held his hand, while both kids talked with him about what to expect.
It was scary. Slightly fun. And a memorable way to mark 150 days of traveling the world together.
Later that evening, as we left to go back to our apartment, thunder rumbled, but while we worried about rain as we walked, not a drop fell.
Day 5: Greatest hits
Multiple days at a theme park give an opportunity to make the final day something special. Sometimes that’s an attraction you save for last. Other times, the last day is a chance to revisit favorite rides or attractions. That’s how we used our last day at LEGOLAND Malaysia.
Jodie and Aster rode the Great Race Coaster—twice. Aster’s “woo-hoo” on the down slope fluttered all the way to where Anthony stood watching on the walkway. Aster felt so differently about roller coasters now. Our first day, she had been much more anxious.
Now, while Connor and Jodie hung out at Aquazone, Aster asked Anthony to go with her to Kingdoms. She rode Dragon’s Apprentice all by herself—and we she even was the only one on it.
A break inside Rebuild cooled us off and gave us another chance to add our own builds to the big spherical LEGO worlds in each build room. Back outside, we realized that surrounding construction hadn’t blocked off all of MINILAND. Many of the exhibits and paths remained open. We wandered the intricate yet small-scale builds. The fine detail on ship scenes, cities, and replicas of world famous landmarks absorbed our attention. Some we knew, such as Angkor Wat, which we had recently visited a month earlier. Others we didn’t know at all. The gold mosque of Brunei glimmered in the sun—and in our memories.
Returning to LEGOLAND NINJAGO World, we blasted more villains on NINJAGO The Ride. The Lego Movie 4D also helped us cool off, and have some big laughs.
And, of course, there was one more ride on the Dragon’s Apprentice. One more soak on the Aquazone. Not to mention a few custom minifigs and a couple of sets to set in brick our joy at our time at LEGOLAND Malaysia.
What else in Malaysia is good to visit?
Malaysia is full of amazing places to visit! We came to Malaysia after a long stretch of moving around fast. In return, we had committed to the kids that we would stay in Johor Bahru for one week, all for LEGOLAND Malaysia.
We knew we would see little of Malaysia on this trip. However, we left knowing there was so much else to do, and that we had better make up for it on a future visit.
As we look into a second trip to Malaysia, here are some things that will be on our list:
LEGOLAND Malaysia Resort’s other attractions
The LEGO fun doesn’t stop at the theme park. While we didn’t go to these on this trip, the overall resort is also home to:
Not only home to LEGOLAND, JB is Malaysia’s second city. Here are some of the other Johor Bahru family attractions we’d be interested in:
Malaysia’s largest city is both full of activities and makes a good jumping-off point for families as they travel:
- Things to Do in Kuala Lumpur with Kids
- 21 Fun Places To Take The Kids Over The Weekend Or School Holidays In Klang Valley
- Petrosains, KLCC Discovery Centre
- Aquaria KLCC, KL Convention Centre
- KL Tower
A wonderland of play, imagination, and a few thrills for the entire family
LEGOLAND Malaysia builds in family fun, delicious foods, and an array of imagination-inspiring attractions. Odds are anyone in your family can find something they’ll enjoy.
Our LEGOLAND Malaysia review is simple: Learning that Malaysia was home to LEGOLAND brought big joy to our time in the region. It also whetted our appetite for visiting other LEGOLAND parks around the world. Whether getting coaxed onto a roller coaster, popping some “water bombs” for the Aquazone Water Racers, making LEGO builds together, or sitting down and cooling off during a puppet show, we got the most out of every moment during our week at LEGOLAND Malaysia. Your family can too.
More: Video LEGOLAND Malaysia review
Our week at LEGOLAND not only deepened our love of play and creativity. It made us realize how much more we want to check out Malaysia. Here’s how we broke down LEGOLAND Malaysia’s exhibits, rides, and attractions…