The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Published: 03/19/14 9:19 AM in North America, Travel.
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One of the main reasons to make the journey to Orlando and pay for tickets to Universal Studios is to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Islands of Adventure! Being a HUGE Potterhead myself, I will find any excuse to visit the home of Butterbeer and Chocolate Frogs. So naturally, I was delighted that my cousin’s Bachelorette Party included a day at Islands of Adventure and extensive time at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

A Hufflepuff Bride Visits Hogwarts

Like myself and a couple of the other girls, Katie (The Bride) is also a massive fan of Harry Potter. So we over the course of our three day trip to Universal Studios, we spent a fair amount of that time in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter buying as many souvenirs as our wallets would allow.

The interesting thing about any visit to this part of the park is that the fun of the experience doesn’t rely on the rides. Instead it is the overall experience of just being in the space. The workers and character actors are phenomenal! Every person in the park is dedicated to making the visiting Muggles feel like they are truly a welcomed part of the Wizarding World. I even had a lengthy discussion at the register of Honeydukes about how the goblins needed to hurry up and finish construction on Gringotts so that I could withdraw some galleons.

Visiting Hogsmeade with fellow Potterheads really added to the experience of the park! Among us we had a Gryffindor, a Hufflepuff, and a Slytherin so talk about some inter-house unity!

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Since we were staying at one of the resorts, we got to enter Islands of Adventure an hour before its usual opening time and, of course, we headed straight to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter! It was definitely the most empty I have ever seen (and probably will ever see) this part of the park. Since all of the stores were just opening we dashed directly to the main ride, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey.


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After spending some time riding the rides, we stopped for a bit of breakfast at The Three Broomsticks! Once you find a table, this becomes an excellent spot to relax and take a minute to appreciate the details that go into making this such a magical place.


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Although I am not a fan of the pumpkin juice, the breakfast was very good and filling. As you can see, the meal was satisfying to all!


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The entire park is so well put together and designed. It is amazing how many little things are going on around you that you are barely aware of. However, as soon as you notice them, you can’t believe the attention to detail and ingenuity that went into creating this part of the park.


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As everybody knows, whether you are a witch, wizard, or muggle, a stop at the Hogshead is necessary for a tall glass of butterbeer. For anybody that has yet to enjoy a butterbeer, here’s a little pro-tip for you: use a straw. It doesn’t matter if you get the frozen or non-frozen variety use a straw to drink it. The reason this is helpful is because they add a thick layer of cream to the top of the butterbeer and, although it is yummy at first, it can start to get too creamy toward the middle of the beverage. Drink through a straw and enjoy your whole butterbeer!


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One of the most important parts of any trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a stop at Ollivander’s! Unfortunately the line for this experience is always a tedious part of the adventure. However, by a pure stroke of luck, we got to skip the line and head right in (it pays to be with a Bride). And since we arranged it beforehand, Katie got picked to have a wand choose her!


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The entire Ollivander’s experience was magical and completely unique. It was really fun watching Katie go through the process of finding a wand and casting spells with it! And once again, the character actor was great!


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Every Bride is different, but personally I think this Bride and her Maid-of-Honor planned the best Bachelorette Party! They did an excellent job coming up with the perfect location to celebrate Katie’s coming wedding. The entire trip fit her personality and interests, but the Harry Potter part was extra special! Just look at how natural she is in her Hufflepuff robes, drinking a butterbeer, and handling her wand outside of Hogwarts.


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Another thing to notice at Hogsmeade is that the details are in the windows! Take some time to look through any of the windows that line the streets of the town and you will see little displays of magic everywhere. From quills taking notes on their own to measuring tapes taking robe measurements by themselves, the magic is alive throughout the park!

Also, make sure to visit the bathroom to listen to Moaning Murtle prattle on about her life after death.


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After purchasing many Harry Potter souvenirs and tons of candy, it was time to leave this magical bit of Islands of Adventure. But first we had to take some last photos in our recently bought garb!

Until next time Harry! I will be back soon to explore the many wonders of Diagon Alley!


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Islands of Adventure with the Bachelorette
Universal Studios with the Bachelorette

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