Potterhead Of The Class
So who showed up? It was a mix of Potterheads and theme-park enthusiasts, for sure.
There were many teens who grew up with the books and films alongside teachers because it was a summer weekday. Many young people wore Hogwarts robes with shorts underneath. It looked warm, but I think of them and wonder if today they object to wearing face coverings.
Cost Of Harry Potter World Tickets
If youre wondering, just how much are tickets to Harry Potter World Orlando?, the answer is a little bit complicated. With Harry Potter lands in both Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, if you want to visit the entire Wizarding World in Orlando, you cant just buy standard Universal Orlando tickets. Youll need either a 2-Park 1 Day Ticket or a multiday ticket.
If you only have 1 day at Universal Orlando and you want to go to both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley, Park-to-Park access is key, as it allows you to get into both Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure on the same day. 2-Park 1 Day Tickets start at $164 for adults and $159 for children ages 3 to 9.
If you have multiple days in the Wizarding World and the rest of the Universal parks, then getting a Park-to-Park ticket is nice, but not necessary. 2-Park 2-Day Tickets start at $106.50 per day for adults and $101.50 per day for children. 2-Park 2-Day Tickets start at $136.50 per day for adults and $131.50 per day for children.
In general, if youd like to spend some time in Harry Potter World as well as going on rides in the rest of the parks, especially if this is your first time visiting, wed recommend you spend at least one day each at Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. If this isnt your first time to Universal Orlando and the Wizarding World, all you care about is Harry Potter World, or you simply dont have the time, then you can get by with only one day as long as you can park hop.
The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter Vacation
In a common misconception that has floated around since opening day, many guests believe that both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley are their own theme parks, a misunderstanding probably born from the fact that, in Universals initial marketing push back in 2010, it referred to Hogsmeade as a theme park within a theme park. Its since dropped that language, thankfully enough, and you do not need to buy an additional ticket to visit the Wizarding Worlds. However, if you wish to ride the Hogwarts Express between the two lands, you will need to purchase a park-to-park ticket. Fortuitously enough, Universal has installed ticket booths at the entrances to each station, where guests can upgrade their tickets if they happened to overlooked this caveat.
For our very best vacation planning tips, check out the wealth of informational pages in our Insiders Guide to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, including how to beat the crowds, the full rundown on early park admission, and where to find the best food and souvenirs on offer and more!
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There Are Many Types Of Butterbeer At Universal Orlando Resort
Though cold and frozen Butterbeer are the most popular versions , there are even more ways to enjoy this butterscotch and shortbread-flavored treat. You can get Butterbeer Fudge at Honeydukes and Sugarplums, Butterbeer Potted Cream at Leaky Cauldron and Three Broomsticks, and Butterbeer Ice Cream at Three Broomsticks, Leaky Cauldron, Florean Fortescues The Hopping Pot, and various snack carts.
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, About.com reported a rumor from a “highly credible source” that the 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 at Universal Studios Japan.
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Treat Yourself To An Interactive Wand
Although they can be a bit on the pricier side, the Interactive Wands are WORTH IT for Harry Potter fans since they unlock an entirely unique experience in the Wizarding World! Both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley have their own separate Interactive Wand locations with various spells that cause magic to happen with moving items, bright lights, and more!
Once youve purchased an Interactive Wand, you will receive a map to show you exactly where the magical areas are located. And you might want to solemnly swear youre up to no good, because the Interactive Wands can be used time and time again !
Want to journey with us to conquer ALL the Interactive Wand spots in the park? Watch our video below!
Years Later The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter Is Not Done Says Universal Creative Chief
Hogwarts at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter
Ten years after the opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park at Universal Orlando Resort, those behind the parks creation speak about the achievements so far at the park, and the future of the franchise.
“You think about what has happened with Harry Potter in the past 10 years beyond our theme parks Cursed Child, the eight movies, Fantastic Beasts, the mobile game Wizards Unite. The Wizarding World is not resting. It keeps building.”
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort started off as just one land, Hogsmeade, and three rides, and now spans across two lands, Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley, which are located in totally separate parks – Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios, respectively. The opening of Diagon Alley in 2014 also came with the addition of the Hogwarts Express, acting as a magical connection between the two parks.
J.K. Rowling attended the opening of the parks in 2010, along with the core cast of the Harry Potter movies, including Daniel Radcliffe , Rupert Grint , Tom Felton . Coup reflected on the magic of this day:
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Things To Do At The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter
Rides the Hogwarts Express between parks: this rides at The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter is a fun ride and it saves you the trouble of walking from park to park.
Enjoy the rides: The golden goblin statue in Diagon Alley marks the entrance that will take you to Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts. If the notices you receive when a route starts you leave, you have the option to leave the line before surrendering. Go for a walk even if you plan to leave the line. Its good to see the detailed interiors of Gringott, the goblin, and everything else!
Use a Wand: You can buy standard wands that are wands certain characters use through the movie series. You can also buy interactive magic wands in also from various gift shops of the theme Park. If you head to Olivanders wand shop, you can experience the magic just like Harry Potter did in the movie when selecting a wand. Purchasing the wand selected for you is not necessary.
Go to the gift shop: Youll find a variety of fantastic books and magical items in the gift shops. You can find many souvenirs from the movie series. The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade stores are almost as fun as the rides. Get acquainted with April fools jokes in Weasleys Wheezes and get ready for Halloween in Borgin and Burkes, which is in the darkness of the Knockturn Alley.
Fizzing Whizzbees Are A Real Treat
Candy preferences are subjective, of course, but the Fizzing Whizzbees are one of the more exciting and delicious options at the Harry Potter sweet shops. Theyre a combination of chocolate, fruit flavor and a Pop Rocks-esque ingredient that creates a fun effect in your mouth. The Exploding Bon Bons also include popping candy.
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The Shops At Islands Of Adventures
- Honeydukes: Exploding BonBons, Chocolate Frogs, and Bertie Botts Every Flavour Beans
- Dervish & Banges: magical items, broomsticks, and your Hogwarts uniform
- Filchs Emporium of Confiscated Goods: treasures seized by the surly caretaker, plus more
- Owl Post: writing equipment and a place to mail letters with a Hogsmeade postmark
Wizarding World Of Harry Potter Musts
When youre visiting the Wizarding World, there are a couple of things that you should try if you have the chance for the quintessential Hogwarts student experience: Butterbeer and interactive wands. As youre reading, youll also want to keep an eye out for my Magical Tips for Muggles for helpful hints on how to make the most of your time in the Wizarding World and bits of Harry Potter-inspired hidden magic to look for as youre exploring.
Butterbeer is an iconic treat in the magical world created by J.K. Rowling and the signature drink of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. In the real world, this popular brew tastes like a mix between butterscotch and cream soda topped with a thick, whipped foam which lends the drink most of its sweetness. And dont let the name fool you, Butterbeer is non-alcoholic.
As a beverage, you can get either Cold or Frozen Butterbeer, while Hot Butterbeer becomes available in the colder months (which tastes akin to butterscotch-flavored hot cocoa. You can also get the popular flavor in Butterbeer Ice Cream both soft-serve and hard-packed as well as Butterbeer Potted Cream and Butterbeer Fudge.
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There Isnt Just One Form Of Butterbeer
This is actually a pretty common misconception for all the Muggles out there. Although youll usually see Cold and Frozen Butterbeer at the entrance of Hogsmeade and Diagon, these arent the only options you can find in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter! In fact, there are six variations total that you can try during your visit.
Cold and Frozen Butterbeer are available year-round, but the holidays bring about the Hot Butterbeer option for the cooler weather in the parks.
You can satisfy your sweet tooth further with Butterbeer Fudge, Potted Cream, and Ice Cream in spots like Sugarplums, Honeydukes, and Florean Fortescues!
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 Universal Studiosis 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!
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Hogsmeade Vs Diagon Alley: Based On The Food
To honest, the food doesnt make much of a difference from one Wizarding World to the next. In the Universal Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley debate, dining wont be much of a factor.
At Universal Studios,you have the Leaky Cauldron the small pub and inn where Harry spent several weeks one summer. They offer traditional British fare plus kids meals .
Over at Islands of Adventures, you can dine at the charmingly decorated Three Broomsticks. The food offerings here are pretty similar, a little less British and with the addition of a couple of more American items .
The Verdict: Its a toss-up. Dont decide which Harry Potter park is better at Universal Studios based on the Harry Potter food!
The Best Harry Potter Souvenirs At Universal Studios
Wow, if you didnt blow your Universal Orlando vacation budget on park tickets, you will be tempted by all the Harry Potter souvenirs at Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. Each ride has its own specialty gift shop and the two Wizarding World of Harry Potter lands of Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley offer a bonanza of shopping opportunities.
In fact, shopping is a huge part of the experience, as you get to do what Harry Potter and his friends did in the books and movies stock up on your magical gear. Every Harry Potter shop features clothing and robes with your favorite Hogwarts house crest, but some gift shops are better than others, and Ill fill you in on why below.
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If You Want To See All Of The Harry Potter Orlando Theme Park Arrive Early And Make A Plan
The Hogsmeade area and Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure often open early for Universal hotel guests as part of Universals Early Park Admission perk. If youre staying onsite or can get to the park close to opening time, your best bet is to tackle Hogsmeade early in the morning. Its not as large as Diagon Alley and can get crowded as the day wears on. If it gets too crowded, hop over to Diagon Alley and come back to Hogsmeade in the early evening.
The Leaky Cauldron Sign Actually Leaks
The Leaky Cauldron is the spot for hearty English fare in Universals Diagon Alley. You can start the morning with a full English breakfast or stop in to try the fish and chips, bangers and mash, or cottage pie for lunch or dinner.
Designed to look like the pub and inn of the same name from the Harry Potter books and films, the Leaky Cauldrons dingy brick exterior opens to cathedral ceilings, weathered furniture, and a large cracked cauldron in the hearth.
Despite the crack, this cauldron doesnt leak, but the wrought-iron sign above the inns entrance does. If you look at the ground beneath the sign of a witch stirring whatever potion is brewing in her cauldron, you may notice a small puddle. If you look up, youll see small drops of water falling from the crack in the witchs cauldron. Its a tiny detail thats easy to miss, but its fun once you spot it.
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Tips For Visiting Diagon Alley At The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter In Orlando
Your Harry Potter Orlando experience actually begins outside of Diagon Alley in the London waterfront area of Universal Studios Florida. Its worth spending a few minutes in this area adjacent to the Harry Potter world to chat with the Knight Bus conductor and search for Kreacher the house-elf in the upstairs window of 12 Grimmauld Place before heading into Diagon Alley.
When youre ready to enter the Wizarding World, you may be wondering where to find the entrance to Diagon Alley. To better keep out muggles, its hidden behind a brick wall just past Leicester Square Station.
Once inside the Harry Potter theme park, youll be staring right at the large Ukranian Ironbelly dragon that sits atop Gringotts Bank. It really does breathe fire . If you want to catch a photo or video of the fire-breathing dragon in action, listen for the dragons low growl and youll know hes warming up for his next performance.
Turn right after you enter to visit Carkitt Market or go straight back toward the bank and youll hit Horizont Alley. You can also see the seedier side of Diagon Alley if you follow the dark pathway past the Leaky Cauldron into Knockturn Alley. Each has shops, dining, and magic wand spots , and Carkitt Market has a stage where you can watch live entertainment from Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees or The Tales of Beedle the Bard throughout the day.
Other Items Of Interest
- Bathrooms The voice of Moaning Myrtle can be heard speaking to guests in the Hogsmeade Wash-rooms.
- Dance Performance Students from the Beauxbatons Academy of Magic and Durmstrang Institute perform a dance ” rel=”nofollow”> film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire) called the “Triwizard Spirit Rally” on the grounds of Hogwarts.
- Hogsmeade station At the Hogsmeade Station there is a cheery Conductor who welcomes guests to Hogsmeade.
- Interactive Wands Using a map and special interactive wands sold at Ollivander’s, guests can go to different shop windows and use the designated spells to activate magical special effects.
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Three Broomsticks Harry Potter Restaurant Orlando
The Three Broomsticks Restaurant is one of the most well-known and visited restaurants of Harry Potter World in Orlando. Located in Hogsmeade with the Hogwarts castle and all of the snow-topped buildings, this restaurant transports you directly into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter with classic British food and décor.
Another quick service restaurant, you dont need to have Three Broomsticks Reservations to eat here. You can simply walk in and place your order for any of its delicious meals. From the Harry Potter Great Feast, which serves up to four people and includes an overflowing platter of ribs, chicken, potatoes and vegetables to the best Fish & Chips in Harry Potter World, youre sure to find something for everyone. And dont forget dessert! With apple pie, chocolate trifle and even a container of butterbeer ice cream, youre guaranteed to finish your meal in a very happy place.