Visit The Parks At Night
Lastly, early park entry is great, but there’s also something magical about visiting Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley after dark.
This won’t be possible every night , but be sure to check the opening hours of each park for every day of your trip to see if you can catch either of these parks after dark.
I promise it’s worth it!
You can read Stephen’s post about our weekend here.
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Do You Have To Pay Extra For The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter
No, the Harry Potter theme park areas are included in your ticket price for whichever Universal Studios park youre visiting . However, to get the full Wizarding World experience, youll need to purchase a Park-to-Park pass that includes same-day admission to both Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida. Thats because the Hogwarts Express ride connects the two parks and can only be accessed by those who have passes to both.
You should also consider splurging on a Universal Express Pass that will let you skip the long lines at the rides in Harry Potters Wizarding World in order to have the very best experience. And, you may want to consider staying at a Universal Premier hotel in order to take advantage of Universals Early Park Admission perk. Because the only thing more magical than the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is having the whole theme park practically to yourself.
The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter Hogsmeade
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hogsmeade at Universals Islands of Adventure was the place what started it all. Originally opened in June 2010, this land is themed after Hogsmeade from the movies / books and is highlighted by an almost life-size replica of Hogwarts Castle.
This land is located between The Lost Continent and Jurassic Park. Upon entering Hogsmeade, guests are immersed entirely in the Wizarding World not only from the design, but the shops as well as the food & drink.
So grab a Butterbeer and explore all the rides & attractions, shopping, dining and overall experiences at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hogsmeade.
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The Marauders Map Magic Light Pen Notebook $2500
This notebook is greatly themed! Not only can you write your notes in this notebook, but you can also discover secret hidden messages thanks to the included light pen.
The light pen is wrapped on top and will let you see all sorts of hidden messages inside.
The notebook also includes a lock and keys to keep everything you write private.
Additional Harry Potter World Travel Tips
- Wear a good sunscreen or you will burn in the Florida sunshine. Remember, even in cool weather the sun is strong.
- Frozen butterbeer tastes better than regular. If youre only buying one, go with frozen.
- All of the merchandise inside of the Harry Potter souvenir shops is available at other shops in the parkdont stand in the 30+ min lines just to walk into the souvenir shop. That said, you will have to wait in line if you want to see the wand selecting ceremony, thats only available at Ollivanders.
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Dont Try Doing It All In One Day
If you have one day to spend in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, you can get the majority of things done, while enjoying the rest of the theme park attractions. But, if you truly want to get the full wizarding world experience without feeling rushed, I recommend dedicating a day in Hogsmeade and a day in Diagon Alley .
Diagon Alley Restaurants At The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter In Orlando
Theres only one sit-down restaurant in Diagon Alley, but there are plenty of spots to get Butterbeer, Fishy Green Ale, sweet treats, and even beers specially brewed for the Harry Potter land.
Fashioned after the pub and inn from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, the Leaky Cauldron is Diagon Alleys only table-service dining option. You can order traditional British fare such as bangers and mash, fish and chips, and a full English breakfast. Dont worry, there are also plenty of picky-eater-approved options like pancakes and macaroni and cheese. To save time, place a mobile food order before you arrive at the restaurant. When you arrive, your server will find you a table and fill your order.
Florean Fortescues Ice-Cream Parlour
Butterbeer ice cream is certainly the most popular menu item, but dont sleep on the shops other unique flavors like Earl Grey and Lavender, Sticky Toffee Pudding, and Chocolate Chili. Better yet, spend a few days exploring Harry Potter world in Orlando and try all the flavors.
The Fountain of Fair Fortune
When youre ready for something a bit stronger than Butterbeer, stop at the Fountain of Fair Fortune. Theres a variety of non-alcoholic drinks, but adults can pop in here for a Wizards Brew or Dragon Scale beer, which are only available in the Diagon Alley area at Universal Studios Florida.
The Hopping Pot
Eternelles Elixir of Refreshment
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Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure
At a cost of $300 million, Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure is the most expensive roller coaster built to date . Hagrids is the newest attraction in the Wizarding World and the ride we consider to be the most fun in all of the Universal Orlando Resort.
Originally opened in June 2019 replacing the Dragon Challenge, Hagrids is a highly themed launched roller coaster that takes riders on an adventure into the Forbidden Forest traveling at speeds of up to 50 miles per hour. During the three-minute ride guests will encounter Fluffy the three-headed dog, a Blast-Ended Skrwet, a Centaur, unicorns and have to make their way through Devils Snare.
At this time you can only ride Hagrids using the Virtual Line Experience via the Universal Orlando app. Universal releases several times throughout the day so if at first you cant make a reservation, keep trying as additional time slots will typically open.
Check out our on-ride POV video of Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure.
Harry Potter Movie Marathon Weekend
Every February we cuddle up to our favorite Harry Potter films, amidst the cold and snowy winter in Ohio. Complete with warm treats, decorations, and eight films to watch, check out everything we do for our Harry Potter Movie Marathon Weekend. and be sure to grab our cozy fleece Harry Potter Blanket in the shop to set the mood.
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Spells At Diagon Alley
Similar to the spells at Hogsmeade, visitors to Diagon Alley can use their interactive want to cast a total of eleven spells. To locate the sites of each spell, find the bronze medallion that is located on ground in front of the individual locations as outlined below.
These eleven spells at Diagon Alley which include:
- Pilliwinkles Playthings: Tarantellegra
- Weasleys Wizard Wheeze: Descendo
Whats The Difference Between The Wizarding Worlds In Orlando And Hollywood
While just as magical, Universal Studios Hollywoods version of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter only features the Hogsmeade area and is significantly smaller than the Harry Potter world in Orlando. Theres still plenty of shopping, you can dine at Three Broomsticks, get a drink at Hogs Head, and ride Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey and Flight of the Hippogriff at the Hollywood park, though.
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The Problems With Ultra
Wizarding World’s impressive immersion, however, sometimes comes at the expense of theme park practicality. Hogwarts Castle, the Forbidden journey ride, and Hagrids coaster have been designed to handle enormous crowds. But the shops are all built to scaleto serve the story, no doubtand the tight quarters can’t comfortably accommodate the hordes of muggles who visit on busy days.
Another quibble: The coaster, Flight of the Hippogriff, seems a bit out of place in the otherwise meticulously themed land. It is a repurposed holdovers from Wizarding World’s previous incarnation as Islands of Adventure’s Lost Continent.
We also suspect that the remains of the park’s truncated Lost Continent is destined to be lost forever, since Universal is likely to have more Potter plans up its robed sleeve. Should that happen, muggles will no doubt clamor to be immersed in more of The Wizarding World.
Take The Hogwarts Express Between Parks
If you’re going to Universal Orlando mostly for the Harry Potter parks, you want to make sure to get a park-hopper ticket so you can visit both parks in one day. Then you can take the Hogwarts Express between Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade!
Get on at Kings Cross Station in Universal Studios, and get off at Hogsmeade Station in Islands of Adventure.
It’s a fun way to travel, and actually can save you some time walking between parks .
The ride itself is fun, too, but I won’t give away why you’ll have to ride it yourself to see!
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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.
What Universal Orlando Ticket Should I Buy When Visiting Both Diagon Alley And Hogsmeade On The Same Day
The only ticket that will allow guests to visit both Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade in the same day is the Universal Orlando park-to-park ticket. Its important to note that this is also the only ticket which will allow guests to ride the Hogwarts express!
Its important to note that if you are looking for the least expensive tickets will allow you to visit one theme park per day. We suggest asking these questions when deciding which ticket is the best fit for your family. Do you plan on going and exploring the other rides at each Universal theme park? If so, then you will have plenty to do while visiting one park per day. Or do you plan on spending all of your time in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter? If so, you might be better off purchasing a Universal park-to-park ticket so you can explore both Harry Potter World lands.
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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”. 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 .
Where To Stay At Wizarding World Of Harry Potter In Orlando
The easiest thing to do would be booking in one of the Universal Studios resorts. This way you are close to the park and wont be wasting any time in transportation. You can see availabilities and prices here.
But if you are a true Potterhead, you need to book one of these Harry Potter Airbnbs.
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Wizarding World Of Harry Potter Tips For Hogsmeade
After visiting both parks, I have to say that Im still a little partial to the first Wizarding World location Hogsmeade. Maybe this park has had time to mature, or maybe its something else, but here are my tips and secrets for Hogsmeade.
Ride Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure. I do not give the following praise lightly. This is hands down, the BEST roller coaster Ive ridden. EVER. Stay on property. Get up early. Be one of the first at the turnstiles. Then head with as much speed as safely possible to this ride as soon as the park opens, because you want to experience this and wait times can be two hours plus, pretty much all day long, and as of this writing, you cant use an Express Pass for this ride.
Why is Hagrids so good? You are either on Hagrids motorcycle or in the sidecar on a three-minute ride through the Forbidden Forest. Its a real roller coaster, not the simulator rollercoaster like the Forbidden Journey or Gringotts. Its super smooth and has moments of instant acceleration similar to Rockin Roller Coaster or Slinky Dog at Disney. There are twists, but the thrill isnt in going upside down and corkscrews. You go forwards. Backward. And one move that was totally unexpected!
We rushed through the first time, did the ride and then went around again much slower. The attraction itself is pretty intense and a combination of simulator and ride. If you have it, use your Express Pass once youve seen the queue.
Diagon Alley At The Wizarding World Of Harry Potter
The second land added to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is Diagon Alley . If you are entering from the front of the park walk straight until you hit the mummy attraction and make a right, then continue until you see the Knight Bus. The area outside of Diagon Alley is themed to fill like London, and you will need to make your way through the brick wall until it opens up as Diagon Alley.
Be prepared especially if you are a die hard Harry Potter fan as the attention to detail is unmatched in Diagon Alley. You will be in the middle of shops and cooked buildings, as well a fire breathing dragon nestled over Gringotts Bank!
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Splurge On The Universal Express Pass If You Can
The Universal Express Pass works on every ride in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter except Hagrids Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure. It can be pricey if you have a large party or are visiting for multiple days, but since its included with Universal Premier hotels, you might actually save money by staying at one of Universals high-end properties.
At any attraction that accepts Universal Express, you simply show your ticket to the attendant and they will direct you through a separate line for Express passholders. Because theyll need to scan your ticket, make sure you dont leave it behind with your other belongings on rides that require you to store your belongings in a locker.
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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