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Lost In Legoland: A Gazillion Bricks And A Mini Star Wars Geekfest

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What happens when a geek winds up in Legoland? He has loads of unfiltered fun, that’s what.

“WTF? I should have kept this for my personal blog. This has got nothing to do with technology, and this blog is called TechCrunch for crying out loud. A report and pictures about a visit to a theme park have absolutely no place here on this blog. I wasted a couple of minutes of your life, and your time is valuable. You can, and perhaps should, unsubscribe from and never visit TechCrunch, ever again.”

Ok, now that we got that out of the way, on to the fun stuff!

I was in Denmark this week for the Next Aarhus ‘Beautiful Mistakes’ conference and exhibitions. I had a great time, as you can tell from my report about the trip. I did something awful, though.

At the third day of the event, there was a separate conference for school teachers about the next wave of technology for kids, at the Billund Center in – you guessed it – (tiny) Billund. As I wasn’t actually speaking at the event, I managed to sneak out of the conference room, and walked a mile down the street, passing the original Lego factory, which is conveniently located right next to Denmark’s second busiest airport, Billund Airport, as well the Legoland Hotel.

My destination: theme park Legoland Billund, a popular tourist attraction originally opened in 1968.

No disrespect to the Next Aarhus organizers who kindly invited me to the event, but it was by far the highlight of my trip. And not just because it made me feel like a kid again.

I even got on some rides, garnering wary looks from parents in waiting lines as I was pretty much the only adult in the park with no kids in tow – one carrying around a laptop bag, no less. Ah well, I thought, I’m used to making painful sacrifices for my work here at TechCrunch.

Here’s an elevated, 360-degree and slightly sped up video overview of the Legoland Billund park:

Quite a view, right? I can’t even imagine how many bricks are used for all this.

And here’s a small selection of the pictures I took:

You can quite literally spend hours gazing at the many fantastic creations, big or small, hop on fun rides, grab food, or visit some of the movies and exhibitions in the designated areas. I promised myself to come back here when my son, who is now only 5 months old, grows a few years older. If you have kids, or you would love to feel like a kid again too, I encourage you to see if there’s a Legoland park near you (spoiler: there are parks in Denmark, Germany, UK and California, US).

Here’s the video of a Lego submarine surrounded by (real) sharks, batoids and plenty of other fish:

Bonus points if you can name all the fish you see in the video.

On to the real highlight of my visit to Legoland, which was beyond any shred of doubt the 420 square-metre Star Wars display area in Miniland, which is at the heart of the park.

As a self-confessed Star Wars fan, the level of detail that went into the minitiature depiction of several of the movies’ most famous scenes genuinely astounded me. I took quite a few pictures, but they don’t really don’t do enough justice to the fantastic work that went into this.

Do you remember all the scenes from the films (and The Clone Wars animated series)?

Bonus: a slideshow featuring all the pictures embedded above:

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