The 5 Rarest LEGO Sets of All Time

The 5 Rarest LEGO Sets of All Time

Key Points

  • Our choice for the #1 Best Overall rarest LEGO set of all time is the Ole Kirk’s House.
  • LEGO opened the first theme park in 1968 in Billund, Denmark.
  • The company’s CEO position remained in Christiansen’s family until October 2004.
  • It is estimated that everyone on Earth owns at least 86 LEGO bricks.
  • LEGO first marketed plastic toys under the brand name Automatic Binding Bricks.
  • The Marvel franchise has most of the rarest LEGO minifigures.
  • When picking the rarest LEGO set, consider checking availability, visiting auction sites, and setting a budget.

Ole Kirk Christiansen is the founder of the LEGO Group. He was a Danish carpenter that first worked in a woodwork factory before establishing his business in 1932. Among the products he made, wooden toys were his specialty. LEGO comes from “Leg Godt,” Danish for “play well.” LEGO fans are a global community that buys these toys for fan and aesthetic purposes. These include a collection of the rarest LEGO sets of all time.

Are you an enthusiastic LEGO set collector? We’ve thoroughly researched and brought to you the rarest collectibles of all time. Let’s get into it!

#1 Best Overall Rarest LEGO Set: Ole Kirk’s House

Best Overall
LEGO Exclusive Set #4000007 Ole Kirk's House by LEGO : Amazon.com.be: Toys
  • LEGO Exclusive Set #400007 Ole Kirk's House
  • Super rare
  • LEGO founder Ole Kirk's house
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Ole Kirk’s House LEGO set is our choice for the #1 rarest LEGO set of all time with the highest price tag.

Released in 2009, it replicates Ole Kirk Christiansen’s Denmark home and is a fitting tribute to the LEGO Group’s founder.

LEGO released only 32 copies of this, making it among the rarest LEGO sets of all time. It has a market value of $9,459, but we don’t expect much fluctuations soon. The LIT2009 Ole Kirk’s House set occasionally appears on online auction sites. Yet, you must place your bid fast, as other collectors continually seek it.

Represents iconic scenes in the movie with detail and accuracyNo minifigures
The dining room is pretty and spaciousExpensive
The lightsaber duel area’s depiction is accurate

Best Sculptures Series Set: Taj Mahal 20156

Best Sculptures Series Set
LEGO Architecture Taj Mahal 21056 Building Set
  • Designed for experienced builders, the LEGO Taj Mahal model features advanced building techniques
  • Includes rare elements, colors, and realistic details of architecture
  • The amazingly detailed model features the base, minarets, domes, finials, arches, and stairs in the front
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11/26/2023 05:55 am GMT

The Taj Mahal 20156 is our choice for the best LEGO sculptures series set for depicting the real Indian architectural masterpiece it represents.

It was one of the most expensive sets on the LEGO market after the initial release of the larger set in 2008. After 27 months in the market, LEGO retired this set in November 2010. Finding unopened packs of this LEGO masterpiece is difficult, but you can get it on sites like eBay, StockX, and Bricklink. It retails between $940 and $1,600 for the unopened set. We checked on Amazon, and it was out of stock.

However, you can relive the excitement the first collectors of this sculptural set felt with an alternative set, such as the Taj Mahal 10256. It features the Taj Mahal’s arched windows, balconies, and four facades. There are seven modular sections, six blue baseplates, and one white. You will also find jumper plates and Erling bricks.

It is enormous and takes a while to assemble the 2,022 pieces — the set measures 15.04 x 10.32 x 4.65 inches when fully built. The Taj Mahal LEGO set is maneuverable; you can build different parts separately before joining them. Besides, the symmetry structure makes assembling it an exciting project.

The model looks good when finishedRepetitive and boring build
The interior and roof engineering is structurally sound 

Best Rare Star Wars Exclusive Set: Star Wars Cloud City 10123

The Star Wars Cloud City made it to the best rarest Star Wars exclusive set category with its replication of the iconic city in The Empire Strikes Back movie.

It was released in 2003 with 698 pieces and seven mini-figures. It is one of the rarest LEGO sets of all time. If there ever was a perfect representation of Cloud City, this LEGO set nailed it. The set features a torture chamber, a lightsaber duel area, an office, and a dining room.

The set initially retailed at $99.99, had a short span in the market, and is now rare. Despite its rarity, reseller platforms like eBay have the Star Wars Cloud City LEGO set. Its current market price is between $8,000 and $10,000, and it isn’t listed on Amazon.

That aside, the set’s instructions are clear,  but you should start with building the middle. Everything else connects from here. There’s also a page on the carbonite machine and how to operate it. As for the minifigs, there are eight of them. Four are for Princes Leia, Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Darth Vader. Upon completion of assembly, you snap all the parts together to reveal the Cloud City.

It represents iconic scenes in the movie with detail and accuracyThe door has a height flaw
The dining room is pretty and spacious
The lightsaber duel area’s depiction is accurate

Best Board Game Set: Fantasy Era Castle Giant Chess Set

Best Board Game Set
Lego Castle Set #852293 GIANT Chess Set
  • Chess board
  • With minifigures
  • Lego Castle Chess
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11/26/2023 01:31 am GMT

The Fantasy Era Castle Giant Chess Set emerges as the best, most incredibly cool board game set.

It is one of the rarest chess boards and occupies a slot in the rarest LEGO sets of all time. The chess board features an incredible LEGO castle with a dungeon, dragon heads, and an armory. For the chess pieces, you have castle turrets, skeleton warriors, dwarves, knights, kings, queens, and more. Its packaging features buttoned latches resembling a bookcase and has 2,481 pieces. The packaging box dimensions are 61 x 50 x 17 cm. LEGO released this giant set in 2008.

Unlike other chess sets released by LEGO, this one has 33 minifigs representing all chess pieces. However, the minifigs are precast, which disappoints those who love building them. The unit weighs around 8kg, while the bricks and accessories are in eight labeled packets. Two boards make up the base and a playing surface. All four Star Wars kingdoms come together on the chess set. It takes between four to five hours to assemble the chessboard.

The chess set is very impressive and well-detailedIt has a hefty price tag
It provides a rewarding building experienceThe minifigs are precast
You can play a chess game using this set

Most Storied Set: H.C. Andersen’s Clumsy Hans (Exclusive 2015 Edition)

H.C. Andersen’s Clumsy Hans Lego set wins the best-storied sets category.

What makes this set uniquely rare is that LEGO issued 80 units to participants of the Inside Tour. The sets were in numbered boxes 1-80, written by hand. Conversely, later 320 copies went to the LEGO Ambassador Members in 2015. The set has two exclusive printed tiles, one printed “1 MIIL,” and the second has “LEGO Inside Tour 2015” printed on it.

Most holders of this rare set are not letting go and would rather keep the set for its sentimentality. There are around 400 copies in existence. Hans Christian Andersen, a famed 19th-century fairy tale writer, is the inspiration character behind this model. LEGO initially released a wooden human model in 1936. The toy company would later release a block set on plastic bricks, but that one had limited pieces. So, H.C. Andersen’s Clumsy Hans release in 2015 was a game-changer. Its current estimated value is $1,750.

It is an exclusive setSet owners are unwilling to sell it
It is possible to buy parts of this LEGO set
LEGO set
Some of the rarest LEGO sets ever go for pretty hefty price tags!

©Emanuele Longo/Shutterstock.com

How to Pick the Rarest Lego Sets of All Time

Rare LEGO set collectors pay premium prices for these toys for nostalgia and rarity. Most rare toys are from a retired collection, with minimal units. Unlike the new releases, the rarest LEGO sets of all time are only available in the secondary market.

Let’s talk about what you need to know to buy the rarest LEGO sets!

  • Check availability
  • Visit online auction sites
  • Private on-site auction
  • Stick to a budget

Let’s take a quick dive at each.

Check Availability

The top online marketplaces to find rare LEGO sets are Amazon, BrickLink, eBay, and BrickScout. Visit the online store and search for the set in question. The results will display its availability. Next, submit an order by selecting your mode of payment and shipping mode. The site sends you an email notification with transaction details and delivery date upon submission.

Online Auction Sites

Auction sites feature collections from private owners. The sites list available toys and include images of the available collections. Your task is to find out if they have what you seek. However, you must act fast as many collectors and other individuals compete to own these unique and rare pieces.

Private On-Site Auction

On-site auctions are similar to those conducted online, except that you now have a chance to view items physically. Details of upcoming auctions are available online. Check if there is one happening near you and plan to attend.

Stick to a Budget

Have a budget for the rare collection of your desire in the same way you plan on personal spending. A quick online search will reveal the average cost of the targeted set. Use that as your budget as a guideline.

What to Know Before Buying the Rarest LEGO Sets of All Time

Rarest LEGO Sets are an Investment

According to a Russian-based Higher School of Economics (HSE) study, LEGO sets are a worthy investment. Their high return on investment surpasses many other investment opportunities. Market prices of the rarest LEGO sets of all time (which tend to be unopened sets) from 1987 to 2015 grew by 11% annually.

Research Extensively

An unwritten rule of investments is to research available options. The rarer a LEGO set is, the higher its increase in value. These are retired sets that gain value in two to three years. Only some sets are expensive, but you can compare prices online.

Transaction Costs

Owing to the rarity, such LEGO sets may be available on platforms other than the usual eCommerce sites like Amazon or eBay. Most are on auction sites. Either way, you may incur additional costs like storage, delivery, and more. Some of these collectors’ items are huge and occupy space. There are transportation costs involved.

Using the Rarest LEGO Sets of All Time: What It’s Like

A rare LEGO set is an investment whose ownership is an achievement. Buyers worldwide are tracking down and looking to expand their rare sets collection. If you beat the competition, you could own a product whose value increases with time.

How does it feel to own an H.C. Andersen’s Clumsy Hans Lego set, with only 80 of them in existence? Few things could be more satisfying than being one of the only 80 people on Earth to have such a rare piece!

Summary Table

RankRarest LEGO Set
#1Ole Kirk’s House
Best Sculptures Series SetTaj Mahal 10189
Best Rare Star Wars Exclusive SetStar Wars Cloud City 10123
Best Board Game SetFantasy Era Castle Giant Chess Set
Most Storied SetH.C. Andersen’s Clumsy Hans (Exclusive 2015 Edition)

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a rare LEGO set worth buying?

Absolutely! Most rare sets gain value over the years, especially if you find an unopened one in its original box. Also, LEGO bricks are always relevant. The pieces you adored as a kid are now a vintage collection. You can buy and relive those childhood memories.

Are LEGO sets always challenging to build?

If you thought that LEGO sets were toys for kids, think again. Adults find them fascinating too. Standard sets are easy to assemble because the pieces are in different bags, and there is an instructions booklet. However, other complicated sets have many pieces that must be put together.

Which rare sets are a better investment, the opened or unopened type?

Despite the value proposition in the rarest LEGO sets, the best investment comes from finding unopened sets. Online research can help you find them. Focus on the retirement year and the number of units in existence. These statistics will help you determine a set’s rarity.

Can one buy and resell the rarest LEGO for profit?

Of course, you can, and there’s no harm in it. You only need to be good at research. First, find out what toys are trending and who is selling them. Next, know when to bid your time until a price increase. In other words, think like an investor.

Are there counterfeit LEGO sets?

Yes, fake LEGO sets exist, but there are ways to spot them. Check that the spelling of LEGO is correct. The same applies to the set name. Minifigures are another aspect. Genuine ones have the LEGO stamp on the neck and hips top. 

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