Harry Potter Studio Tour | Review

At the very start of the year I got to visit the Harry Potter Studio Tour in London for the very first time. Upon looking back at some photos I decided to post about the experience there in case any one is interested in making a trip in the future. It is the place to be if you love the movies as the majority of the movies were filmed there in the studios that were there before they dedicated the space purely to the tour. The tour is longer than I could've imagined, you can wander by yourself at your own pace but there is a lot to get through and if you're a huge fan you'll want to take your time. This post will be full of spoilers about stuff that happens and what you can do in the tour so don't read if you want to be surprised on your visit! 

The first section is mainly props from each of the movies. One of the most exciting pieces for me was the Great Hall set-up. They had decorated it as if it were Hogwarts in the snow (they change it every once in a while to match the seasons and change it up a little if you visit often). We went during the Winter months so everything was snow-covered. The Great Hall was set up as if it were a scene in the movie with the tables decorated with food and garnishing and there are members of staff giving you information about the set and doing some small demonstrations. There was then a section full of various props from horcruxes, to costuming, to wands, and building pieces including Griffindor common room. There is an option to buy interactive earphones to hear about each display but I opted out as I like to read the signs and explore at my own pace usually. My favourite pieces from this section were the entrance to Dumbledore's office and the common room. 



There were a lot of photo opportunities in each section of the tour, some including green screens and interactive pieces. There were also wand classes and interactive spots in-between and a lot of the behind the scenes into how they filmed/shot certain scenes like Quidditch. I loved how the tour was split up. The next section was into the forbidden forest (which you could skip as it is a little scary) it was so well done and the effects in that area were really realistic, if you've seen any of the movies you know how many creepy things live in that forest. When you come out you then get to see the Hogwarts Express and platform 9 3/4 for the first time, at first I thought it was just another photo opportunity, which it is, but you can also get on and explore different scenes from different films. After that you're able to head outside and visit some of the outdoor sets including The Night Bus, Privet Drive, and one of the pieces of the outside of Hogwarts. There's also a little cafe to refuel, with Butterbeer which you need to try if you haven't already. You can get it in ice-cream form too if you prefer but it's not made out of beer at all either way. It's a root beer mixture with cream poured on top it is very sweet but very nice.


It took roughly two hours to complete the first half of the tour. I would consider this part the longest due to how much there is to see and the interactive elements. The next part is a more in depth look into behind the scenes, where there is detail into how costumes were made and the CGI effects which surrounded them. This showed a lot of detail into the creatures in the films like Dobby and how he was animated, as a lot of the previous props were inanimate. There was a lot to see here and you could spend just as long here especially if you're into special effects and makeup. There is also a section on different conceptual designs and inspirations from various artists. There is more set like pieces then where you can enter Diagon Alley. This was amazing to see the detail that was put into each shop to make it equally as individual and unique to the next one, definitely put you right in the movie scene. There was also a set for Gringotts at the end which was equally as stunning and detailed. Although Gringotts wouldn't be the place I'd want to visit first if I was in that world. There is then another interactive scene which I believe is new in this area, where a dragon seems to come toward you and breathe fire. It is very atmospheric and very clever visual effects to do the stunt, I'm sure there's videos online if you want to watch, but i recommend leaving it until you see it in person for the full effect.

The last little bit was probably my favourite and the most interesting to me. There was a huge replica of the Hogwarts castle all decorated under a snow effect. This was just magical to see. The detail of it is remarkable, and this was a set piece that was used throughout all of the movies to get shots of the castle for long distance shots. It's crazy how realistic it is. There's a lot of information about how it was build and its uses in the film around it and it was so stunning, I probably spent the most time here surprisingly. 

At the end of the tour there is a huge gift shop full of every thing you could possibly want from the wizarding world. Overall I really enjoyed the experience and I would recommend it. It is highly worth the money and you get a full days experience from it. It's not too far from London and if you are visiting there are tour buses that will do a day trip for it, and also scenes around London where they also filmed the movies. I would love to visit again in the future in a different season maybe when they do something new with it or go with someone who hasn't been before but it's a lot of fun.

Has anyone else been here before? What do you think?

1 comment

  1. The Harry Potter Studio Tour looks fabulous and fascinating!!!
    Quite inexplicably and surprisingly I have never read or watched any Harry Potter books or movies, even though I follow bloggers / writers who love them ( i.e.: @WithLove_Ellen ).
    It sounds like an amazing experience.
    If I were on your side of the pond and were able I am sure I would very much enjoy taking the tour and being immersed in it all.

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