While on vacation in London two weeks ago, my mother and I visited the Harry Potter Studios. We’ve both been fans since practically the beginning and we were very excited to visit the studios. We had booked our tickets way in advance (which is pretty much the only way to actually get tickets, the tour is very popular) and on Wednesday, we made our way over.
We had to get there by means of public transport and I was quite nervous beforehand, because I don’t have a lot of experience with public transport in foreign countries, but I do know the chaos that is called public transport in the Netherlands. Luckily, it wasn’t hard at all. The train you need to go on to get to the bus accepts Oyster cards (which you’ll need anyway if you are in London, trust me) and the transfer from train to bus was very easy to find.
Once we got to the Studios, I managed to calm down a little (but only a little, because Harry Potter Studios and omg). The outside doesn’t really look like much, but once you get past the queue for the entrance and past the doors, that’s where the excitement starts.
I won’t talk you through the whole tour or show all the photos I’ve taken (by the way, taking pictures is very much allowed and even encouraged), because I don’t want to take away all the magic in case any of you ever want to visit. I just want to make sure you get a bit of an idea what you could stumble upon in case you would ever visit.
First off, you enter the Great Hall. Obviously, it doesn’t have a ceiling that looks like the sky, but it is still pretty impressive anyway. The guide, who you’ve met earlier, tells you a bit about the Great Hall and after that, you’re free to roam the Studios by yourself. There’s no time limit on your stay, except obviously closing time. My mum and I spend about two – two and a half hours in the Studios. I’d reckon the average time spent in the Studios would be about three hours (or at least I think I remember that’s what the guide said).
There’s two indoors parts and one outdoor part and everything together is just huge. The staff makes sure the Studios don’t get overcrowded by only letting a certain amount of people in every time, so it’s not too busy. There’s a lot to see and for the first indoor part, there’s not really an obvious route, so make sure you do actually see everything, because once you go outside, you can’t get back in to the first indoor part.
The outdoor part is where you can buy Butterbeer (which I ..didn’t really enjoy. I think I’ll just look up a recipe from the internet and see if I can make something better) and sit in the sun (in our case, but just a casual reminder that the Studios are in the UK and there’s a fairly big chance it might be raining when you visit).
After the outdoor parts comes the second indoor part, which ends with an incredible model of Hogwarts. Really, take your time walking around the castle and enjoy the details and the absolutely astounding amount of work that’s put into the model, because holy shit. Once you’ve seen enough, the next room you enter is the shop (which is, in my humble opinion, hugely overpriced). I bought some things I had looked up beforehand and also ended up buying some extra things, but I didn’t go all out.
The last thing I have to say about the Harry Potter studios is that I enjoyed my time spending there, but if you’re not a huge fan, maybe spare yourself the hassle and money. The studios cost 30 Pound Sterling per person and you’ll probably want to buy things in the shop, so I would definitely keep in mind that you’ll spend at least 50 Pounds Sterling on the Studios alone (and that’s even without travelling costs). But, if you are a fan, definitely go! The things you’ll see might take a bit off the magic of the movies (though never off the books and the feeling -oh the feels-), but you’ll enjoy your time thoroughly and get to learn a lot about the movies, props and sets.