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Harry Potter Universal Studios Closed

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Second Wizarding World Attraction Confirmed Canceled At Epic Universe

Gringotts Bank Alone at Night After the Park is Closed – Universal Orlando

· Updated October 6, 2022

The upcoming Wizarding World of Harry Potter land at Universal Orlando Resorts Epic Universe will be opening a bit lighter on the attraction side than initially planned.

According to Alicia Stella of Orlando ParkStop speaking on the latest episode of the podcast Theme Park Shark, she has received confirmation that the second Wizarding World attraction at Epic Universe has officially been canceled.

Originally rumored to be a VR broom ride set in the Fantastic Beasts universe, riders would have joined Newt Scamander as he tries to round up magical creatures in Paris, which would have tied into the creatures that are rumored to still be featured in the windows of Parisian shops within the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Epic Universe.

However, Epic Universe hasnt always been the only home of the VR broom ride concept. Rumor has it that an attraction similar to the Wizards Take Flight VR experience at Harry Potter New York was set to take over the Fear Factor Live theater, which sits next to Diagon Alley and was permanently closed in March 2020.

As Orlando ParkStop reported in February, though, documents show that the rumored expansion and VR broom ride were listed on updated permits as a Canceled Project. The unfortunate news about this project is that it has been officially canceled not once, but twice.

The Rides At Diagon Alley Overview:

The main Harry Potter rideat Universal Studios Florida is Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts. This ride is just beautifully imagined, down to every last detail. If the line is really long, youll be waiting outside for a while. But once you get inside, oh my! Its a breathtaking replica of Gringotts, the bank of the goblins. If youve ever wondered what is Harry Potter world like? this is it! Every breathtaking detail is perfectly rendered to make you feel like youve been transported into the magical world.

This ride isnt a roller coaster in the truest sense, however. Most of the time, you are watching 3-D screens that simulate the drops, twists, and turns. And it does take place in the dark, with some close encounters with bad guys, so there is a thrill factor.

Phase : Islands Of Adventure

Construction of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter began seven months after the official announcement, in January 2008. By July, the Flying Unicorn and Enchanted Oak Tavern were closed. The Flying Unicorn then began an almost two-year refurbishment which transformed it into the Flight of the Hippogriff. The Enchanted Oak Tavern was later demolished. A bridge was built to connect The Lost Continent with Jurassic Park allowing guests to avoid the construction zone that was to become the Wizarding World. Construction progressed with the Hogwarts Castle slowly taking shape. By September 2008, the Dueling Dragons entrance was moved to Jurassic Park to make room for construction of Hogsmeade. One month later, the old entrance was demolished. By September 2009, the top shell of Hogwarts Castle was completed. On September 15, an announcement was made detailing what was going to be included in the Wizarding World. In early 2010, Universal increased its marketing of the area, which included newspaper advertisements, billboards and television commercials. The Dueling Dragons were closed for some maintenance before being transformed into the Dragon Challenge. Construction was completed by June 1, 2010, when the area began soft openings.

Read Also: Who Was The First Dumbledore

So Which Has The Best Shops When Comparing Diagon Alley Vs Hogsmeade

The Verdict: As tempted as you may be by the chocolate frogs, theres really no contest here. When it comes to which Harry Potter park is better at Universal, Diagon Alley in Islands of Adventure is the clear winner. They have more shops, more merchandise, and the fun of trading your money for Gringotts bank notes. Plus, the younger kids will love the stuffed animals at the Magical Menagerie!

Spell Magic With Wands Here

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Do you know that you can actually spell magic with wands at these spots? Well, they are intended indeed to make you experience the magic. At Slug & Jiggers Apothecary, if one waves their wand in the right-hand window where there is a display of dragon dung, the lid will levitate by itself, and one can smell the scent of the fertilizer in Herbology class. The spell “Incendio” can ignite the lanterns on the second floor of Flimflams Lanterns which is at the end of Horizont Alley, and also and “Wingardium Leviosa” to lift the feather quill at the window at Scribbulus. Magical Wands can be purchased at Ollivanders in Hogsmeade, Ollivanders in Diagon Alley, Wand Cart on the Path To Hogwarts, or Wands by Gregorovitch in Diagon Alley. However, “Ollivanders in Diagon Alley” is a fulfilling experience. In case you dont wish to splurge on the wand, request one from a Universal friendly staff member to not miss this secret spot experience.

The Vanishing Cabinet at Borgin and Burkes, which Malfoy uses in Half-Blood Prince, stands in the corner to the right of the cash registers in the Knockturn Alley. If one puts their hand on the handle, one can hear the bird used by Malfoy to test the Cabinet for Death Eaters. Also, one should not miss the snake in the window at Diagon Alleys Magical Menagerie, which speaks in English and Parseltongue.

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Universal Studios Closing Several Popular Rides Forever

  • Publish date: Nov 3, 2022 7:30 PM EDT

Popular theme parks, such as those operated by Disney and Comcast’s Universal, have a history of closing rides and attractions for refurbishments, re-theming or a complete demolishing to be replaced by a new attraction.

For example, Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., closed its Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage, based on the Disney Pixar “Finding Nemo” animated film in March 2020 for a two-year refurbishment and reopened the ride on July 25. Mickey’s Toontown at Disneyland closed March 9 for a reimagining of the area and major renovation, which will include the addition of a new ride, Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway when it reopens in early 2023.


When Is The Best Time To Visit Universal Orlando

If youre not sure when to plan your next Universal vacation, Our Universal Orlando Crowd Calendar is the best tool to help you get the most out of your time in the parks. We breakdown the park crowds, park hours of operation, ticket prices by day, and average temperature.

Guests can also beat the crowds with our Universal Orlando tickets! All guests who purchase their tickets from The Park Prodigy will get Early Park Admissionto Universal Orlando! This could save you a ton of time in the parks and avoid buying express passes!

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Harry Potter Ride Broken/shutdown Again

We went on January 6th to Universal Studio Park Just for the Harry Potter Experience. We waited 2 hours to be told that the ride had been shut down. We had to wait another 1/2 hour to get back to the lockers to get purses, sunglasses and such. The day before people were trapped in the dark with the ride stopped for 20 mins…then it was closed down. We were not refunded any of the entrance fee. Although we did not have children with us many were crying. Heck I felt like crying. It a great disappointment.


Universal Studios is a waste of time and money. The rides are great….if you can get on them. Waited 3 hours to get on the new Harry Potter ride. Announcement after announcement of “technical difficulties”. Then the line loops and snakes forever. Other rides were breaking down just as often. The whole experience was more stressful rather than fun and entertaining. Our experience at Disney was just the opposite. Disney makes an effort to entertain you for your money. Universal is only interested in getting your money. Whether you are entertained or not, they can really care less. NEVER AGAIN Universal….NEVER AGAIN!!!!

Polk City, Florida, United States

Phase : Universal Studios Florida

Universal Holidays features Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

The opening of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter saw attendance at Islands of Adventure rise by as much as 36% in 2010. According to Jason Garcia of the Orlando Sentinel, this saw resort executives pondering “when to expand Wizarding World and how to keep business balanced between Islands and Universal Studios Florida”. In April 2011, Brady MacDonald of the Los Angeles Times speculated that an expansion of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter would see attractions such as Diagon Alley and a Gringotts-themed dark ride replace Islands of Adventure’s Lost Continent themed area.

On December 6, 2011, Universal Parks & Resorts announced that they would be expanding The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. The expansion was described as “significant” by officials however, no further details were released at the time. The announcement came just four days after Universal Studios Florida announced that they would be closing their Jaws ride on January 2, 2012. On January 25, 2012, the Los Angeles Times stated that Universal Studios Florida’s Jaws ride would be the site of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansion. The aforementioned attractions would be complemented by a replica of the Hogwarts Express to transit guests between the two parks.

Read Also: Harry Potter World Ride Heights

The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter Hogsmeade At Universal’s Islands Of Adventure

Its the one-and-only, all-wizarding village of Hogsmeade, and youll only find it at Universals Islands of Adventure! The main attraction here is Hogwarts castle, which comes to majestic life on select evenings for The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle spectacular.

Looming over Hogsmeade, Hogwarts also features Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, an attraction that will take you soaring high above the castle grounds. For more airborne adventures, hop aboard the family-friendly Flight of the Hippogriff roller coaster, which youll find at Hagrids hut.

Speaking of Hagrid, he takes center stage in Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure. Sending you deep into the Forbidden Forest for up-close encounters with a menagerie of wondrous creatures, this innovative attraction combines state-of-the-art coaster technology and gripping storytelling for one of Universal Orlando Resorts most incredible experiences yet!

High Street a popular hangout for Hogwarts students and professors alike is brimming with enchanted shops. Send magical mail to family and friends at Owl Post, load up on sweets at Honeydukes, or get your very own Sneakoscope at Dervish and Banges, among other arcane retailers.

Where To Go At Universal: Diagon Alley Or Hogsmeade

In an ideal world, youd be going to both parks and your only worry whether to visit Hogsmeade or Diagon Alley first. But, since thats not always possible, well help you out with our recommendation. We pick Hogsmeade / Islands of Adventure.

Why did we pick Hogsmeade?

  • The rides are so much better theres really no comparison there. Hagrids Motorbike Adventure alone makes this an easy choice.
  • Who could turn down the chance to actually walk into Hogwarts Castle? The fact that theres a really great ride inside just makes it even more fun.

We hope our Harry Potter World comparison helps you decide which Harry Potter theme park is best. They are both excellent parks and you will have fun wherever you go, but in our opinion, Hogsmeade is the clear winner!

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The Impressive Hogwarts Castle

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The towering Hogwarts Castle is as impressive as it has been in the movie, where the visitors walk through the halls and resonate with familiar scenes of Harry Potter. Of course, you will pass through Dumbeldores office, Defense Against The Dark Arts classroom, Gryffindor’s common room, and encounter talking portraits but keep a watch for Sorting Hat, Mirror of Erised, Mandrakes, and carefully analyze Hall Of Portraits.

The Complete Guide To Hogsmeade Vs Diagon Alley At Universal Orlando

Storm coming in over hogsmeade. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter ...

The Complete Guide to Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando

The Complete Guide to Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando

If youre planning a trip to Universal Studios, youre probably wondering which is better: Hogsmeade vs. Diagon Alley. They both have thrilling rides, delicious butterbeer, and wands for every aspiring wizard. But, just like in the books, they are distinctly different. So, which Harry Potter world is better?

If youre not sure where to start, dont worry. Our ultimate guide is here to help! Our side-by-side comparison will help even the biggest Potter fan figure out which Harry Potter theme park is best for your vacation.

We hope you find this post helpful! Our goal at The Park Prodigy has always been to help you save time and money on your next Universal Orlando vacation! If you are planning a trip to Universal Orlando be sure to check out the latest deals on Universal Orlando vacation packages and our discounted Universal Orlando ticketswhich include EARLY PARK ADMISSION to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter!

SPECIAL NOTE: If you need help picking the best time to visit Universal Orlando for your next vacation be sure to check out our Universal crowd calendar!

Also Check: Original Harry Potter Book Set

Rumors And Official Announcement

In January 2007, reported a rumor from a “highly credible source” that the Lost Continent area within Universal’s Islands of Adventure park was to be re-themed “to the stories and characters of one of the most popular children’s franchises”. Other sources followed up in the next few days with unofficial confirmation the new area would involve Harry Potter, and was being developed under the name “Project Strong Arm” in reference to the KUKA robotic arm technology it would utilise.Nikki Finke reported her own confirmation of the Potter park plans in April, followed shortly by a story in The Scotsman both reports were widely relayed by other media sources. On May 31, 2007, Universal officially announced the 20-acre addition recreating Hogwarts, the Forbidden Forest and Hogsmeade, with a planned opening in 2009.

The Rides At Hogsmeade Overview:

If youre going to determine which Harry Potter world is best solely on rides, well have to give it to Islands of Adventure! For starters, there are three rides, compared to Universal Studios having just one. And of the three, two are actual roller coaster type rides. For this reason we also recommend starting your day here for anyone looking to buy discount Harry Potter world tickets.

The most exciting of the three is Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure. Visually, it isnt nearly as stunning as Escape from Gringotts. But once the ride starts, whoa! On Hagrids motorbike or in its sidecar, youll twist, turn, drop, and roll onto your side. The 1-mile track makes it the longest coaster in Florida. If youre an adrenaline junkie, this ride alone could decide the question of which is the best Harry Potter theme park for you.

Next up is Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, another mostly 3-D ride. This time, Harry, Ron, and Hermione save you from a boring lecture about the Defense of the Dark Arts and take you on an adventure through Hogwarts. The ride is fun, but the really exciting part is entering Hogwarts. Its a dream come true for any Potter fan, and for many people this alone settles the question of which Harry Potter world is the best.

For younger riders, or those who prefer a milder ride, the Flight of the Hippogriff is ideal. Its a bit of a kiddie coaster, but it does go high enough to give you great views of the Hogwarts castle.

Also Check: What Point Of View Is Harry Potter Written In

Live Tweeting And Facebook Live Streaming From Universal Orlando

We visit Universal multiple times every month to bring our fans live in-park photo and video updates direct from Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure, Volcano Bay, and CityWalk! To see all of our photo updates as they happen, we invite you to follow us on .

We also do Facebook live streaming from in-park, as well, both on our page and in our community. To be a part of these broadcasts, like our Facebook page here and join our private community here.

Discovering Platform 9 By Yourself

Universal Studios Reopens Park For First Time In A Year, But Rides Still Closed

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Do you remember the baffled look on the muggles face when Harry asked for the directions to Platform 9 ¾? When you enter Kings Cross to board the Hogwarts Express, look out for Hedwig and a pane of glass. This glass pane looks seemingly toward a brick wall that has signs of Platforms 9 and 10. Remember Mrs. Weasleys words here, Best do at it a bit of run if you are nervous and surpass this brick wall and head towards the platform

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Basically, Orlandos Wizarding World has been divided into two Universal Parks. Hogsmeade and Hogwarts Castle are in Universals Islands of Adventure, whereas Diagon Alley and Gringotts are in Universal Studios, Florida. Both are connected by Hogwarts Express, one of the enchanting experiences to behold. Covering both locations isnt quite feasible on the same day thus, a multi-day visit is advised. Also, one needs a Park-To-Park ticket to experience Hogwarts Express, and the ticket is not allotted with single-park tickets.

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