Stepping into the magical and utterly captivating world of J.K Rowling’s imagination is an experience like no other. Plus, it’s totally achievable on the Behind the Scenes Harry Potter Studio Tour. If you’re a massive Potterhead and have a bucket list – this should totally be on it!
So, we all know that Harry Potter is pretty much the biggest phenomenon of our generation – right? But, did you know just how much work went into bringing the best books of all time to life? If you’re a total Harry Potter nerd, I’m sure you’re nodding your head like mad right now. But if you don’t, brace yourselves – after reading this your life won’t feel complete until you take a mythical trip to old London town!
The Making of Harry Potter allows you to step into Hogwarts and discover the filmaking magic. Walk up Diagon Alley, gaze upon the model of the great and imposing Hogwarts castle (FYI it’s surprisingly small, but that just makes it so much cooler), see Hagrid’s head that was worn by the impossibly tall actor, and set your eyes on the one, the only, Dobby, the house elf!
You’ll wander the Great Hall, get goosebumps in the Forbidden Forest and feel a rush of excitement at Platform 9 3/4.
I’m probably going to lose a few popularity points by saying this, but I’m not a super invested Harry Potter fan. I’ve read all the books and seen the movies, but it’s my husband that’s the real fan, and honestly, he’s the reason I’ve seen all the films.
When I originally bought the tickets for this tour, which saw us riding in a double-decker bus from London’s city centre to the Warner Brother’s movie studios I expected a pleasant day out, but my heart was hardly racing in my chest.
But, from the moment I spied Harry’s cupboard under the stairs while we were lining up to get in, my expectations had grown from fairly non-existent, to pretty high.
On a completely unrelated note, am I the only one who thinks that Gryffindor dorm bed looks insanely uncomfortable? Is there even a mattress in there? No wonder Harry and Ron were always sneaking out in the middle of the night.
But I digress, upon entry, you’re taken into a theatre like room where you’ll be welcomed by a recording of the cast of Harry Potter, before being led into the Great Hall.
But you don’t just get to see cool props and some of the most famous movie sets of all time, you also get to learn some pretty interesting facts.
For instance, did you know that there were over 20,000 parcels and goods in the windows of the shop fronts in Diagon Alley? Or, that it took six months to train the owls to deliver the letters on camera?
If that isn’t enough to satiate your curiosity, the house on Privet Drive was originally filmed on a real street. They only made the prop because they couldn’t always get access when they needed it. These facts and many more will await you at this enchanting studio tour.
Typically, to exit you need to go through the gift store. Ordinarily, I hate this kind of set-up, I mean – preying on cashed-up tourists much? But, there’s so much fricken cool Harry Potter memorabilia, from wands to sorting hats and just about everything you could possibly dream of – that I can totally learn to forgive them. At least just this once.
Before you leave, make sure you also grab a butterbeer. Personally, I thought it was disgusting… But, alas, it’s not a true Hogwarts experience if you don’t at least try it!
I guess what I’m trying to say is, even if you’re not a huge Harry Potter fan, taking a peek behind-the-scenes of JK Rowling’s concept of witchcraft and wizardry will be an enlightening experience that will make you truly appreciate the magic of the movies.
Until next time…