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Harry Potter World Universal Orlando Vs Hollywood Overview

A Tour of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter Universal Studios Hollywood

There isnt anything much better than being able to walk about the streets of Hogsmeade, drinking butterbeer feeling like youre in the Harry Potter Universe. Lucky for us, there are two different places in the U.S. where you can experience a Harry Potter theme park. There are many similarities and differences between both Universal Studios Harry Potter parks which we will cover here. The question is, which is the ultimate Harry Potter experience Universal Orlando or Universal Hollywood?

While Universal OrlandoHarry Potter World is much larger, you do have to buy a separate ticket for both parks to experience everything. In Orlando, Islands of Adventure has Harry Potter World, the main land, Hogsmeade. While over in Universal Studios Florida you can experience all that Diagon Alley has to offer. Diagon Alley was built in 2014 and expanded the Universal Orlando Harry Potter experience tenfold. The theming of Diagon Alley is almost identical to what you would imagine in the Harry Potter books or films. With it came the thrilling ride, Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts, which is an extremely popular thrill ride.

With that being said, it is an extra cost to travel between the two parks in Universal Orlando and Diagon Alley is typically very busy no matter the time of year. So, overall is Universal Studios Hollywood Harry Potter World better or Universal Orlando Harry Potter World? Youll have to continue reading to find out.

Q: Which Universal Studios Has Harry Potter Rides

Another popular question we receive is, which Universal Studios has Harry Potter rides? And guests can enjoy Harry Potter rides at both Universal Studios Orlando or Universal Hollywood.Its important to note that Universal Orlando will have the most Harry Potter rides split between the two lands of Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. Universal Studios Hollywood is only home to Hogsmeade and does not include the very popular Hogwarts Express which can be found on the east coast.

The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter Strategy

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is extremely popular in both Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando. If Harry Potter is a priority for you you should prioritize your morning around this land! It will get busier as the day goes on and if you decide to go here first thing in the morning you can enjoy the land without bumping into other guests and really take in the details.

Universal Orlando Harry Potter Strategy

The Hogwarts Express is a must-see attraction. The train is how you get between the two parks within The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Diagon Alley to Hogsmeade. Guests must have a park to park ticket in order to enjoy the attraction. Now dont make this mistake if you want to avoid riding without a long line! If you wait until the mid afternoon right when it would make sense to park hop you might end up with an extremely long line for the experience. On my visit to Universal Orlando my longest line with the Express Pass was actually for the Hogwarts Express because we went right at 2PM when the rest of the crowd was park hopping. Even if there’s a long line, it’s worth the ride. Plus the ride will be different each direction so make sure you ride it twice!

Entrance to Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando

Universal Studios Hollywood Harry Potter Strategy

Ollivander’s Wand Experience

This advice applies to both Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando!

Each interactive wand comes with a wand map with the spells and locations

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Is It Worth It To Visit The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter In Hollywood

When the most die-hard Harry Potter fans visit the incredible reconstruction of Hogsmeade in Hollywood, they will feel like they are missing out on something, since they know that here they cannot enjoy the equally amazing Diagon Alley, where there is the roller coaster dedicated to the descent through the underground tunnels of the Gringotts Bank, the famous Knight Bus, and the mysterious atmosphere of Nocturne Alley.

However, it must also be said that the Wizarding World of Hollywood is really remarkable. The village of Hogsmeade is reconstructed in the smallest detail. Walking inside Hogwarts Castle surrounded by paintings and talking hats is breathtaking, and it is right here at the castle that you will find the best ride : Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey.

In short, if youre a fan of Harry Potter and are passing through Los Angeles, I doubt youll be disappointed, and you can go on all the other attractions in Universal Studios Hollywood, including a tour of the movie sets, and in my opinion, that alone is worth the price of the ticket and is the exclusive privilege of those who visit Universal Studios Hollywood.

Q: Is Harry Potter World In Florida Bigger Than California

Wizarding World of Harry Potter Design

So, is the Harry Potter World in Florida bigger than California? And, very simply yes. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is much bigger in Orlando Florida as it is spread out between the two lands of Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. Universal Orlando Florida also has the Hogwarts Express to transport guests back and forth between the Harry Potter lands.

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Universals Superstar Character Breakfast

Start your day at Universal Studios® with an unforgettable breakfast featuring the stars of Universals Superstar Parade. Join Gru, Margo, Edith, Agnes, and the mischievous Minions from Despicable Me Nickelodeons Dora & Diego, SpongeBob SquarePants and Patrick E.B. from the film Hop and more as you enjoy a delicious breakfast.

Awards Honours And Recognition

The Harry Potter series has been recognised by a host of awards since the initial publication of Philosopher’s Stone including a platinum award from the Whitaker Gold and Platinum Book Awards , three , two Book Awards , the inaugural , the , among others. In 2000, was nominated for a , and in 2001, won said award. Honours include a commendation for the , a short listing for the , and numerous listings on the notable books, editors’ Choices, and best books lists of the , The New York Times, , and .

In 2002, sociologist Andrew Blake named Harry Potter a along with the likes of and . In 2003, four of the books were named in the top 24 of the BBC’s survey of the best loved novels in the UK. A 2004 study found that books in the series were commonly read aloud in elementary schools in . Based on a 2007 online poll, the U.S. listed the series in its “Teachers’ Top 100 Books for Children”. named Rowling as a runner-up for its 2007 award, noting the social, moral, and she has given . Three of the books placed among the “Top 100 Chapter Books” of all time, or children’s novels, in a 2012 survey published by : Sorcerer’s Stone ranked number three, Prisoner of Azkaban 12th, and Goblet of Fire 98th. In 2012, the of the in featured a 100-foot tall rendition of Lord Voldemort in a segment designed to show off the UK’s cultural icons. In November 2019, the listed the Harry Potter series on its list of the .

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Harry Potter World Is Inside Universal Studios

Unfortunately Harry Potter World is located inside of Universal Studios Hollywood. It is not a stand alone theme park. To get into Harry Potter World you will have to purchase tickets to Universal Studios. This is a real downside because the rest of Universal Studios is really not worth seeing. Especially if you are coming from Disneyland, the Universal Studios park feels like a cheap a gimmick. But you can save some money by using our affiliate link with Get Away Today!

My advice is to walk as quickly as you can through the rest of the park until you get to the gates of Hogsmeade. The only thing you dont want to miss is the Weaslys car just inside the entrance to the whole park. This is one of the actual cars used in the movie, so it is your first good photo op.

Harry Potter Land Shops Universal Orlando Florida Vs California

Wizarding World of Harry Potter Land Tour 2021 | Universal Studios Hollywood | Hogwarts Castle

Double, double toil and trouble! Looking for a cauldron, magical creature or your very own wand from the famous Ollivander? Both Universal Studios Harry Potter Worlds offer a variety of shops to get all of your witch-y needs! But which shops are better California or Florida? Lets compare Wizarding World shops in Florida and California.

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Previous Universal Harry Potter Attractions

A Harry Potter themed attraction at a Universal Studios park or a Disney park was rumored in 2003. However, the rights to the Harry Potter franchise had been acquired by Warner Bros., which denied all rumors. In January 2007, reported a rumor from a “highly credible source” that the Universal’s Islands of Adventure park’s Lost Continent area at Universal Orlando Resort was going 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 that the new area would involve Harry Potter. On May 31, 2007, Universal, in partnership with Warner Bros., officially announced that the Wizarding World of Harry Potter would be added to Islands of Adventure.

After a 2+12-year construction period, the area officially opened to the public on June 18, 2010. This resulted in attendance at the park jumping approximately 50% in its first year of operation. On July 8, 2014, Universal opened an expansion to the Wizarding World at Universal Studios Florida, Diagon Alley, which was placed in the former Amity Island area of the park. This expansion also included the new ride experience: The Hogwarts Express, in which a train travels between the two Universal Florida Parks, from the Hogsmeade area to Kings Cross Station . A week later, on July 15, 2014, Universal opened the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Japan.

Flight Of The Hippogriff

Coming in at number 5, the worst Harry Potter ride at Universal Studios is the Flight of the Hippogriff. If youre a Harry Potter film fan, The Flight of the Hippogriff is a great ride for you! This low-key Harry Potter ride at Universal takes you for a flight around Hagrids pumpkin patch. Board a hippogriff shaped train and swoop, dive and soar as you listen to Hagrids special instructions on magical creatures.

Location: Islands of Adventure Hogsmeade Village

Rank: 5 The Flight of the Hippogriff is ranked at number 5 for Universal Studios Harry Potter rides for a few reasons. This is a coaster-type ride curated for smaller witches and wizards, making it not so thrilling, but very entertaining and perfect for kids. We love the overall design of this ride, but the other Harry Potter rides have it beat! With that being said, you get some of the best views of the outside of the Hogwarts Castle, which makes it totally worth it.

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Early Park Admission At Harry Potter Universal Studios Hollywood Vs Orlando

So, when deciding between Universal Studios Hollywood or Universal Orlando for early park admission, which one is better? Well, this is actually an easy one as only Universal Orlando offers a Harry Potter early park admission. But should this be the deciding factor between the two?

Overall we would say dont make the decision to visit Harry Potter World Orlando or Hollywood just based on an extra hour in the morning. But we would pay more attention to the actual rides that are included with the early park admission. Specifically the Universal Orlando early park admission does include some of the most popular Harry Potter rides including Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts which is not a ride that can be found at Universal Hollywood.

Managing Your Time In The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter At Universal Studios Hollywood

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter comes to Los Angeles â Calabasas ...

You do not have a time turner, so you’ll need to be smart about your time management, especially if you want to explore other parts of Universal Studios Hollywood. Try to arrive right at park opening, which is how you’ll find the shortest lines of the day at any theme park. We love skipping the lines!

Head straight to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. We know you are going to be so excited to see it all, but bear with us. Head straight to the back of the land towards the castle. Do not take too much time to explore now. You will have plenty of time for shopping and exploring later. Ride Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey inside the castle first thing. Do not use the Single Riders line for your first ride. If you are a huge Harry Potter fan, you’ll want to hop through the entire queue so you can take in all those cool details. That’s why you want to ride before the line builds up.

Now that that’s done, we actually recommend leaving the Wizarding World for a bit. Wait, what? Yes. You’ll thank us later. Everyone else heads to the Wizarding World, too, first thing in the morning. It gets busy in the first two hours of park opening. The shops are crowded. The lines for a wand pairing or Butterbeer are longest in the morning. Go take advantage of the short lines elsewhere in the park. We like to hop down to the Lower Lot as soon as it opens and knock those rides out while lines are short. Then, we ride the Studio Tour and make our way back to the Wizarding World.

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How Is It Different From The Wizarding World In Orlando

Although the two themed areas have the same name there actually have substantial differences. First of all, the one in Orlando actually consists of two areas , which in turn are located in two neighboring but distinct parks , while the one in Los Angeles consists of only one area that shares similarities with the Hogsmeade in Florida. Consequently, you can understand how the Hollywood version is consequently smaller and has fewer attractions than the one in Orlando.

Universal Studios Hollywood Harry Potter Restaurants

  • The Three Broomsticks Head on into the rustic tavern for a quick service meal of shepherds pie, fish & chips or even The Great Feast. Inside the theming has beautiful cast-iron chandeliers, exposed wooden beams and the normal wizarding trinkets youd find laying about.
  • Hogs Head Located on the backside of The Three Broomsticks, this pub offers Pumpkin Juice, Butterbeer, specialty drinks, wine, spirits and brews.

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Missing Rides And Differences In The Shows

The most obvious difference from the Florida version of the park is the lack of Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure and the Hogwarts Express. The latter allows you to move quickly between Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley at the Universal Studios in Orlando.

Unlike Universal Studios Orlando, Universal Studios Hollywood no longer has the Nighttime Lights at HogwartsCastle. However, in its place, it has Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle, a show of music, lights, and special effects that will materialize before your eyes the darkest creatures of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, including the villain par excellence, Lord Voldemort. Currently, this experience is exclusive to Universal Studios in Hollywood.

Attractions In The Wizarding World In Hollywood

Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood B-Roll footage

Youll find yourself in Hogsmeade, the snowy village where Harry and his companions go to drink beer butter . Here youll find various shops and restaurants featured in the Harry Potter series, including Ollivanders, where you can buy your magic wand.

As you walk through the streets, youll see the silhouette of Hogwarts Castle, home to the parks most popular ride, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, a 3D heart-pounding journey in which youll follow Harry as he flies on a broomstick. In front of the castle, theres another ride, Flight of the Hippogriff, a roller coaster inspired by the famous bird in the Harry Potter novels.

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Universals Cinematic Spectacular Dining Experience

Its the perfect climactic finale to a day of blockbuster thrills at Universal Studios®. Make it an evening to remember with the exceptional cuisine and unforgettable movie moments of the Universals Cinematic Spectacular Dining Experience.


2Requires theme park admission. Early Park Admission begins one hour prior to regular scheduled park opening to either Universal Studios Florida or Universals Islands of Adventure as determined by Universal Orlando and Universals Volcano Bay. Valid at select attractions at each park. Attractions are subject to substitutions without notice. Additional restrictions may apply.

§Upon full payment for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Exclusive Vacation Package we will send an E-Travel Document to the e-mail provided at the time of booking. The E-Travel Document will include confirmation instructions, destination information and details about the Special Themed Keepsake Box. Guests will have their Special Themed Keepsake Box delivered to the hotel within twenty-four hours of arrival and guests should follow ticketing instructions contained within the E-Travel Document. Maximum of eight lanyards per Special Themed Keepsake Box.

5Based on average price of a 2-Park Universal Express Unlimited pass ranging between $84.99 and $189.99.

6Reservations required. Transportation schedule and availability are subject to change without notice. Excludes Orlando International Resort Club.

Go In Expecting To Bleed Galleons

No big surprise here, everything is expensive. Set a budget, then double it.

Theres a reason J.K. Rowling is a bazillionaire. Universal Studios admission starts at a non-negotiable $109 per person, and once you enter itll take all your willpower to not buy everything in sight. The cute little shops of Hogsmeade are filled with souvenirs for purchase, sweatshirts, stuffies, marauder maps, you name it.

That mug of butterbeer will set you back a ridiculous $15.33 its basically super-sweet soda in a plastic cup. But when in Hogsmeade

If you want to dress up, youll be in good company. Youll see lots of wizards and witches walking around in school robes. Robes at Universal run $140 apiece we pre-bought a knockoff on Amazon for a fraction of that price.

Universal Studios allows you to bring in your own snacks, just not a full-on four-course meal. Not as fun as ordering English pub food at the Three Broomsticks, but probably healthier and definitely more budget-friendly.

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