Harry Potter WB Studio Tour ReviewMonday, June 06, 2016
Tyler and I went to London at the end of April to celebrate our one year wedding anniversary. You can read a full recap of our trip here. In that post I talk about things to do, see, and eat while in London. One thing I left out of that post was the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London - The Making of Harry Potter. I left it out mainly because I felt like I had quite a bit to say about it! In short, we LOVED this tour. We both include it in our top three activities we did during the trip. Read on for a review of the Harry Potter WB Studio Tour :).
Tyler and I are both fans of Harry Potter. However, I would not describe us as "die hard fans". We both love the movies and have read the books but we definitely are not Harry Potter experts! We absolutely loved this tour. You obviously have to be somewhat a fan of the series in order to appreciate the tour, because otherwise what you're looking at won't mean anything to you, but I believe that as long as you enjoy the movies you will love this tour.
Essentially, this tour walks you through the filming of Harry Potter. They actually filmed each movie where the tour is! You have to have a ticket in advance to get in to the tour. I booked our tickets a little over a week before our trip and there were very few tickets remaining! (You get assigned a time slot to enter, which is nice because it controls how many people are wandering around at one time.) If you only have one day available to go tour, definitely book in advance! Tyler and I had three days to choose from, so we were easily able to find a time that works for us.
The first room you enter has all of the different movie posters for each movie presented. They have them in different languages, and it is really cool to see how they change between different countries! There is a short video played in this room that talks about how the Harry Potter movie series came about. Next, you enter an auditorium where they have another short movie playing. It talks about what you will see on the tour, has testimonials from different cast members, etc. (You aren't allowed to take pictures of any of the screens during the tour so that's why I don't have a picture of it here for you.)
After that short video is completed, you enter the Great Hall. This is where all scenes that take place in the Great Hall were filmed. They also have the sorting hat in here as well as different costumes the professors wore, and the uniforms of each house. This is the last part of a tour with a guide. Someone is in there explaining what you're seeing and sharing different facts and stories about the room. After that, you have freedom to explore the rest of the building at your leisure.
From there, you get to see more costumes, sets, behind the scenes videos, and more. Each set you look at, has a sign describing what you're looking at and giving you facts about it. Some examples of things you will see are the Gryffindor Common Room, Dumbledore's Office, and more. It is truly crazy to see how much detail they put into each set! At various parts of the tour, there are videos that play with more details about it. For example, where they have various brooms on display, there are videos that talk about how they made them fly and how they filmed quidditch games.
The next big thing you see is the train to Hogwarts and Platform 9 and 3/4 set up for pictures! Tyler and I spent quite a bit of time in here taking pictures of us "running into the wall".
Next, there is a restaurant and you can order Butterbeer. Tyler I ordered Butterbeer Ice Cream and it was AMAZING. If you ever go somewhere where you can purchase it, I highly recommend it! It leads to a courtyard type of area where they have some other attractions, like the bridge pictured above.
There are more sets to tour after you eat, but the bulk of the next portion of the tour is costumes and special effects. It is really cool to learn about how they made different things look or work. What's really crazy is that the first Harry Potter movie came out in 2001, but if you watch the movie now the technology/effects still seem up to date. They really wanted to make the movies timeless when they made them, and I personally think they did a great job.
The last part of the tour is a model of the Hogwarts Castle! It's honestly incredible to see the amount of detail they put into it, as well as learn about how they created.
All in all, the Harry Potter WB Studio Tour London is well worth the money. Tyler and I spent about three and a half hours at the tour, but if you were really into the movies and wanted to shop in the gift shop, you could easily spend longer there. One tip is to make sure you have pounds on hand if you are taking the shuttle bus there from the train station, as they do not accept credit cards on the bus. Whether you are a child or an adult, you will find this tour incredibly special. There is so much to see and it is very informative. It is really cool to be on site where they filmed, look at the costumes they wore, and the props they used. If you ever make your way over to London, I could not recommend the Harry Potter tour more!
If you have any specific questions about the tour, please shoot me an email and I will do my best to answer!
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