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First things first, I am a Harry Potter geek, a Potterhead if you will. I regularly read the books and have seen all the movies. This was our first trip to Europe together, so we focused on doing all the things we really wanted. So it was a guarantee that on my recent visit to London I would be visiting one of the centres of the Harry Potter universe – the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Tour, in Leavesden. I managed to convince my ever willing husband that this too would be an experience he would love too – and the Harry Potter Studio Tour delivered. While I don’t think he was convinced, he agreed to come along – and even admitted that he may have enjoyed it. To be honest, I would have gone by myself, and probably will do so when I return to London at the end of the year.
If you are a Harry Potter fan then you should definitely take the time to visit The Making of Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Tour.
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You can book your tickets here. You will have several package options to choose from. All packages include a timed entry ticket. As the facility is located outside of London, so you do need to ensure you programme extra time to get there before your scheduled time. We caught the train from London Euston station to Watford Junction, where we were met by the Harry Potter Experience bus!!! It was a really smooth transport experience – and of course, you just do it in reverse to get back.
We booked for the whole experience – tickets, digital guide and Souvenir Guidebook. Totally recommend this package – the digital guide really added to the experience and gave insights that the signage didn’t.
There are plenty of options available for getting to Harry Potter Studio Tours as well as having a guided experience yourself.
Arriving at the Studio you are greeted by the large chess pieces from the movies, and you collect your ticket inside. Once you enter the foyer you have the opportunity to have a coffee in the cafe located there, or you can pick up your Digital Guide and proceed to line up. We arrived a touch early (a bit too excited perhaps) and we managed to arrange to get in for an earlier tour – but still had plenty of time to have a coffee.
The lines were long to get in but well organised and there is plenty to look at while you wait. It is run like a well-oiled machine and the crowd we were in line with where positive and excited. We were there at the end of the school year so there were plenty of school children there too – so plenty of energy in the lines. You also get to see Harry’s cupboard under the stairs as you wait – giving you an indication of the level of detail you can expect to see during the tour.
When it is your turn you move into a bare room with Harry Potter movie posters from around the world. Here you are given an introduction to the experience and then move to watch a short film – and then….the doors to Hogwarts appear!
From here on in it is a self-guided experience – which is where the Digital Guide came into its own. You will get the chance to see behind the scenes of The Making of Harry Potter, see the magic, costumes and how the special effects were created.
You will also be able to try a Butter Beer at the Backlot Cafe. For those of you from Australia or NZ, it kinda tastes like Creaming Soda – except sweeter. It is here you will also be able to see the Knight Bus, Harry’s house in Privet Drive and the bridge at Hogwarts.
For the final part of the experience, you get to walk down Diagon Alley and see the Hogwarts model.
Overall, we loved the experience and being able to peer behind the magic. Judging by the reaction of the children and families also there, they did too.
There is so much opportunity to make your visit to the Harry Potter Studio Tour even more special, you (or your young people) could
Sleep in a Harry Potter inspired enchanted chamber at the Georgian House Hotel. The wizards chambers look like they are straight from Hogwarts. Check here for latest rates and information.
Stay above the pub just like Harry did at the Leaky Cauldron. The Half Moon Pub is in Herne Hill, a direct train ride to Victoria Station for your train to Watford. Beautifully designed large rooms, with a bustling pub downstairs. A gorgeous breakfast is laid on in the morning to set you up for your day of Harry Potter excitement. Check out the latest rates.
If you are a Potterhead and are in London, definitely take the time to head out to the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Tour.
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