Photo Essay: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Universal Studios

Come away with me to a magical world where the words you once read and the magic the silver screen once teased come to life! Ride the Hogwarts Express, watch the ladies from Beauxbatons, pick a wand, and drink your fill of Butterbeer!

Watch for "Pro-Tips" written below for when you're planning your trip to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter!






Enter Diagon Alley


I'll admit - we actually had to ask someone how to get to Diagon Alley. They hide it that well! It just adds to the magical experience of it all. Once you turn this corner you are faced with a giant dragon at the end of the alley. Just beautiful and magical and exciting!


The Gringotts Bank housed the ride which takes you in every which way! Thrilling and exciting - definitely worth the wait.

Pro Tip: Get on this ride first to beat the crazy lines. Just make a bee-line for it and hop on!



Pro-Tip: Go in the off season. The weather is cooler, less humid, and much, much less people! 




Pro-Tip: Plan on spending an arm and a leg at the Three Broomsticks for food. BUT - this is the place you can get the hot version of Butterbeer and it is absolutely amazing (and affordable)!!!


The books and movies really get into your head on this one - it felt naughty to be in this alley and it certainly was dark and gloomy. Lots of shadowed corners for dark wizards to hide.





Feel like vanishing in a hurry?

Gringotts Bank






At the end of the ride you come out in this gorgeous stationary shop with the most stunning ceiling decor. It was by far my favorite shop in the whole park. I purchased a quill, some ink, sealing wax, and a seal... because... you know... I'm a writer.



Hogsmead





Hogwarts

What you've been waiting for, I'm sure.


Pro-Tip: This is another ride you want to get on first thing in the morning! The wait gets long in a hurry to get there first!





This was taken from the pathway connected to the Dragon Challenge ride (which we rode probably 10 times over the course of our stay.)

Pro-Tip: The Dragon Challenge had low lines all the time and were a great way to get the thrills you seek. While everyone is distracted with Hogwarts, get on this fast, corkscrew of a roller coaster!


I'll admit, I enjoyed the walk through the castle (while waiting in line) more than I actually enjoyed the ride which was less of a roller coaster and more of a simulated, active movie that swings you around a bit.


Butterbeer 


This is the thing I miss the most about our trip. It's delicious! Like root beer, but with butterscotch. We drank it over and over again!

Pro-Tip: The hot is the best, cold is second, and frozen is third.





Recap

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is worth the trip all on its own. The characters are fun, the rides great, the wands magical! Seeing for yourself the world that Harry grew up in is definitely something worth experiencing at least once in your life. 

Overall, get there early, walk around, and plan on spending at least three days at Universal Studios if you want to be able to take your time and enjoy it while you are there. 

I can't wait to see how California comes together!