All set for a day of humongous fun at LEGOLAND Malaysia this school holidays? Fantastic... that is if the skies hold up. Because as we approach the monsoon season, one can pretty much expect plenty of rain. Which means that a good number of the rides at the theme park may be shut down. Yes, a real bummer I know.
And that was exactly what happened during our most recent visit to LEGOLAND Malaysia. Rain was the theme of the day. And even though it was not exactly too heavy a rainfall, it was nonetheless unpredictable, a drizzle at times while pouring the next.
And though some of the outdoor rides were not in operation due to bad weather, the monkies still had loads of fun thanks to the numerous air-conditioned and/or sheltered attractions that are perfect for the gloomy skies (or scorching sun depending how you look at it).
1. LEGO Ninjago The Ride
The NEWEST addition to LEGOLAND Malaysia, LEGO NINJAGO The Ride is the very FIRST of its kind in Asia... and it is entirely air-conditioned!
The ride is experienced in 3D and features effects such as heat, smoke and wind throughout the adventure, giving guests the ultimate 4D experience. But before that, I have to give credit to the awesome pre-ride experience that accompanies the main attraction.
As one meanders around the barricades and move from room to room, there are plenty of Ninjago creations made from LEGO bricks along the walls that will be sure to thrill any Ninjago fan.
In my case, there are three of them.
Fret not if the queue to the ride is long. There are puzzles and even a screen with a motion sensor that will keep the little ones (and adults) occupied while waiting in the queue.
There are even LEGO wall panels where kids can use LEGO bricks to create pop-up images of the Ninjago characters!
The actual ride allowed us to do as the ninjas do and throw virtual lightning bolts, move shockwaves, send ice soaring and emit fireballs - all with our hand movements. Cue sore arms but it was so fun that we went on the ride three times!
Up to four guests sit in each ride vehicle and are guided through various scenes encountering villains and challenges. At the end of the quest, we could then view our individual scores on display.
*Ninjas must be at least 115cm tall and 6 years old to ride unaccompanied.
*Ninjas less than 115 cm and less than 6 years old must be accompanied by an adult in the same vehicle.
Oh, and be sure to check out the various Ninjago LEGO sculptures built around the compound too, including a mini playground where kids can 'master the art of Spinjitsu'.
And it definitely makes for comical photo opportunities too, as Ayd demonstrated.
2. Merlin's Challenge
Basically a carousel in the form of a train which spins around and along an undulating terrain, this sheltered ride functions come rain or shine.
3. LEGO City Airport
A fave of Ale when she was little - she now deems it too childish (Sob) - I remember this ride as one which is too hot for my liking. Fortunately, a canopy has since been added so aspiring little pilots can take to the skies even in bad weather conditions.
4. TECHNIC Twister
A spin of the usual spinning cups ride at all theme parks, the sheltered TECHNIC Twister allows riders to control the speed of one's spin.
5. Lost Kingdom Adventure
A laser-blasting treasure hunt in the same vein as the Buzz Lightyear ride in Hong Kong Disneyland, the air-conditioned ride allows adventurers to collect points for every successful blast along the way.
6. Junior Driving School
A mini version of the Driving School, this sheltered ride is strictly for kids aged between 3 and 5 years old. The junior drivers will be able to drive around an easy-to-drive track in a single pedal LEGO-built car.
7. DUPLO Express
Younger kids who do not meet the height requirements of other rides can go on the DUPLO Express, a miniature of the LEGOLAND Express train which will bring them on a looping train ride - all under a shelter!
If the kids (or you) need a break from all the rides, head to the City Stage at LEGO City to catch the ‘Ninjago and The Realm of Shadows’ show. It is a puppet style show brought to life on stage with puppetry, video mapping, illusion, stage effects, and music.
But the puppets are no miniature ones - they are actually at approximately 1.2 meters in height with every puppet carefully crafted and hand built by specialists. The puppets are then controlled by actors dressed in black in Bunraku-style, the traditional puppetry of Japan.
The 20 minute show features a total of six puppets and makes use of video mapping and illustrations to bring the set to life, as well as create the effects of the show. No doubt kids will enjoy the show and I'm sure parents will too, especially since the show takes place in the fully air-conditioned LEGO City Stage!
9. LEGO Studios
More shows lie in wait at the LEGO Studios, where mesmerizing 4D movies will thrill the kids. Look out for the falling 'snow'! There are currently 5 shows to choose from - Legends of Chima, Spellbreaker, Clutch Power, LEGO Racers and the newest addition, LEGO Movie 4D.
10. LEGO Star Wars Miniland Display
Need more air-conditioned comfort? The LEGO Star Wars Miniland Display is a must-go if there are Star Wars fans in the family.
The building is divided into eight areas. Six areas house one iconic scene each from the six Star Wars films, while the seventh area features a scene from the animated film Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The eighth area offers a dedicated retail section for LEGO Star Wars products.
11. Pharaoh's Revenge
Ready, aim and fire in this indoor playground that lets young Pharaohs shoot soft foam balls at targets and, run, skip, hop and jump over awesome challenges.
12. DUPLO Playtown
For younger kids, this is one sheltered playground that they cannot afford to miss. This is where they discover the joys of play and learning through climbing, sliding and connecting colourful LEGO play structures with an animal farm, slides, and vehicles!
13. Build & Test
A perennial fave of the monkies, this is where kids will try their hand at creating something out of LEGO bricks to see if their creations really work - all in air-conditioned comfort.
One portion of the room will see kids attempting to build a structure on the LEGO baseplate which will in turn move to simulate an earthquake to see if their buildings would collapse. The other end is home to 2 ramps and kids will be able to build their own vehicles and race them with others to earn bragging rights.
Here, kids are provided with a free range of educational LEGO models to conjure up creative projects. Occasionally, educational workshops will be held here as well.
15. LEGO MINDSTORMS
For older kids who are into building robots, they can enrol in free creative workshops here where they get to create LEGO robots and bring them to life.
So the next time it rains at LEGOLAND Malaysia, it is not all doom and gloom.