Winter Wonderland: Harry Potter’s World

Day 9
December 12th, 2018

(Spoiler alert: Muggles beware. If you are a Harry Potter fan and are going to WB Studio London to see this anytime soon. Please don’t read this post yet. Go first. Every experience is different but we went not knowing what to expect and enjoyed it all the more. Nothing can capture a whole experience, especially one like this and our account will be different to yours or others you read. If  this idea inspires you. Please stop reading and start planning to do it).

I solemnly swear that I am up to no good

To view the Marauders map, one must tap it with one’s wand and recite…
Pure magic …

Long before we left on this journey, Prunella had arranged a surprise visit to glimpse into the world of Harry Potter for our boys, they are huge fans. We have read all the books, watched all the films, been to the quiz nights, visited many famous HP sites and the boys are walking HP encyclopaedias. So we were really excited. This happened to fall at the most magical time of the tour calendar – winter. Today we would experience the most sort after experience of this attraction, Hogwarts in the snow.

Warner Bros Studios Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter, is a permanent exhibition in Leavesden, southeastern London. This meant first a treck into and back out of London which took us past Westminister Abby, Paul Mall and all the Brexit protesters to the studio lot…

So it is that we set off for this magical day together on a tour bus. This was not only cheaper but also the only way to visit as all the direct tickets are regularly sold out. Rather than try to write about our experience, it is probably best expressed in our photo’s and Lucas’s practical notes of the day.

There were surprises around every corner for real fans, including waiting for the doors of the great hall to open, artificial snow, a short movie, interactive displays and lots of moving sets. No, as budget travellers, we did not buy any additional souvenirs, green screen photos or other, except some butterbeer & ice-cream to share. We took our own wands. The attention to detail was breathtaking. Let’s just say it far surpassed all our high expectations. Truely magical…

Great Hall & Interior sets

Differences of habit and language are nothing at all
if our aims are identical and our hearts are open

Albus Dumbledore in Goblet of Fire

Exterior Sets & creature shop

There are strange likenesses between us, after all. Even you must have noticed.
Both half-bloods, orphans, raised by Muggles.

– Tom Riddle tells Harry in Chamber of Secrets

diagon alley & model room

There were shops selling robes, shops selling telescopes and strange silver instruments Harry had never seen before, windows stacked with barrels of bat spleens and eels’ eyes, tottering piles of spell books, quills, and rolls of parchment, potion bottles, globes of the moon…

Harry Potter visits Diagon Alley for the first time

Hogwarts model & shop

Here is Lucas's notes of Day 9:

We got on a bus and then got on a train and went to a tour bus (which we almost missed) to Warner Brothers studios, and went to a Harry Potter tour, including animatronics, forced perspective, green-screen broom flying, and a big model of Hogwarts. Then we went to a temporary couchsurf (just for the night, to be closer to our airport destination), had homemade pizza, and went to sleep.

Mischief Managed

to close the Marauder’s Map, first said in HP and the Prisoner of Azkaban

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