Hello Witches, Wizards, Muggles and No-Majs!
On Tuesday I visited the greatest place on earth… The Harry Potter Studio Tour in Watford and it was phenomenal. It was the second time I have visited the studio tour, the first time was about six years ago and it did not have the Hogwarts Express, Forbidden Forest nor were you able to enter Privet Drive. So although it was my second time, it was more like my first once again.
Firstly getting to the tour was an experience. It took us about four hours to drive down and we had booked on for the 12:30 tour. They say the tour itself lasts three hours but you can stay for as long as it is open, due to having to drive back we left at 5:30 although I could have definitely stayed forever. Because I don’t want to ruin the tour for everybody I will only be including some of the pictures I took that day. However I have recently made a new Harry Potter dedicated Instagram where I will post more.
So go ahead and follow that for more Potter Goodness @swishandflick94.
Cue 3 selfies of me having the time of my life…
Quite often the tour has special events on, when I went it was the Goblet of fire exhibition which was amazing. They showcased the Goblet spitting out the names of the contestants and also featured Old George and Fred on the floor after being thrown away from the age line. What was really nice about this bit was the fact they had a box of names to the side so everybody could get one, each of these had Harry Potter’s name on. In the future I would definitely look to go when the Death Eater Halloween Special is on and of course Christmas!
Every aspect of the studio tour is well thought out. There is detail in every nook and cranny, from your ticket to each corner of the tour.
Going inside Privet Drive was probably one of my ultimate favourite moments because it is where it all started, where Harry grew up and got his first letter. The second favourite moment I have to mention is Dumbledore’s office, this is one space where the extensive work that has gone into this film series really hits you. Every little thing in the office from the handmade pensive labels to Dumbledore’s collection of books.
As you leave the Great Hall you are greeted by the ‘Ice’ Sculpture for the Yule Ball and some of the costumes. I’d never seen this the first time I visited and it was so amazing. Sadly this picture does not do it justice. The intricate details are truly so beautiful and the little bottles of drinks for the Yule Ball are the colors of the Hogwarts Houses.
Art fans and designers you too will have an awesome time at the tour. There is a section showcasing numerous drawings and models of the different sets in their initial design sequences. The picture above shows a paper/cardboard model of the Hogwarts Castle. CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT IS PAPER. It is incredibly detailed even down to the little people in the courtyard. There is really something special about seeing the early designs and then seeing the final product.
Walking down Diagon Alley was an emotional moment. It is such an iconic place and as you walk along you are hit with the reminder that this is the set the cast will have walked down, I was essentially walking in the footsteps of Hermione, Ron and Harry. Diagon Alley is filled with so much detail, the shop displays each showcasing famous goods featured in the movies such as Rita Skeeter’s Book. In the future I wonder if they will ever open up the shops so you can see inside or perhaps expand to include Knockturn Alley! Imagine that.
As I walked around the tour I felt so nostalgic, remembering everything from each movie and thinking of the memories I held of when I first experienced seeing and reading the books/movies but the ending of the tour is what really makes you emotional. Nothing prepares you for the finale as you reach the ending of the tour and Hogwarts Castle.
How beautiful and amazing is it.
It was such a surreal experience being in its presence as it is the model they used when filming the outside shots of the castle. I got so many shots of this and spent so long just staring at it. I can’t truly put into words how it made me feel, for someone who has been a harry potter fan for so long, it is a lifetime experience I will never forget.
Finally as you leave the Hogwarts Castle behind… *cries*… and right before you enter the gift shop you enter a section of Ollivanders. Home to hundreds of wand boxes each with a name of someone associated with the films. Here is Alan Rickman’s wand box, one I had to get a memento off.
I hope you enjoyed this Harry Potter Studio Tour and my pictures. Like I said I have hundreds but I don’t want to give too many spoilers for those who wish to see the tour for themselves. Please do go ahead and follow my new Potter Instagram though where I will be posting more; once again its www.instagram.com/swishandflick94.
What is your favourite moment of the tour?
What is your favourite Harry Potter memory?