Harry Potter Studio in London


Europe, London, United-Kingdom / Tuesday, March 13th, 2018

If you’re on a Harry Potter weekend in London, you cannot miss the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio. It’s a one of the Harry Potter attractions in London (ok, Leavesden) that are 100% worth their price, and you’ll have the time of your life. Be ready to feel your Potterhead (heart) go crazy, but don’t take your camping gear with you because – sorry – you can’t sleep in there, you’ll have to go home at some point!

Harry Potter Studio in London

What you need to know

How do I get tickets to the Harry Potter Warner Bros. Studio Tour?

You can buy them on the website and by phone. You can also buy gift tickets.
Whichever way you decide to buy tickets, you will have to book a particular time and date. If you buy a gift ticket, the person who receives the ticket will have to book the time they want by themselves, by phone (it’s a UK number, so keep that in mind) unless you have already booked it when buying the ticket.

Simone had gifted me with a ticket for our first anniversary, and we had no idea when we’d go. So once we had decided on a date (almost a year after!), I called the number to book my time and date, and also bought a ticket for Simone, everything by phone. I then received a confirmation email, and they told me I had to get the ticket once I was there.

Do not worry, your ticket will be there and ready when you arrive (but do verify your confirmation email in case their was a mistake). It will be very easy to get it at the entrance and will only take a few seconds.

But it’s far! In the name of Merlin, how do I get to the Harry Potter Studio?!

Fear not, it’s not in London, but it’s really not that bad!

Cheap option: Take the train – cheapest on the weekend and off peaks
Our tour was on the Sunday, so it was off peak. It cost us 11.5£ per person for a return ticket. You take the train at Euston Station (close to King’s Cross) and get off at Watford Junction. Check out the timing because some trains are more direct and take 20 min, whereas others are less direct and take 50 min! They’re the same price, so take the more direct one!
Once you get off at Watford Junction, you will find directions to get the Warner Bros Studio Shuttle. It’s 2.5£ for a return ticket. You have to have cash on you (if possible, have the exact change). The shuttles run every 20 min so don’t worry, you’ll get one!
Total: 14£/person for the whole thing.

Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Shuttle bus

Expensive option: take the special bus.
Even though the cheap way is very easy to use and pretty fast, you could also choose to take the easiest and more expensive option.

This website explains everything very clearly and that what I used to plan our journey to the Studio in Leavesden.

By the way, did you know you can go on a bus tour of the Harry Potter filming locations in London? Check out our review, we loved it!

Before the tour

Don’t wear yourself out before going, because you’re going to walk, and it’s going to take you at least 3 hours. That’s what it took us and we didn’t even read everything and didn’t do all the activities, etc.

You should pack some sandwiches if you don’t want to buy anything on site. But there is food to be bought – although probably not much is vegan (we had bought vegan wraps at Euston station).

You’ll be able to leave your things at the cloakroom, but if you go in winter know that you’ll have to go outside during the tour, so keep your coat with you.

Don’t forget memory cards and maybe batteries for your camera so you can take as many pictures as you’d like!

If you want to dress up, please do – it’ll be even more fun!

Alice in the Great Hall wearing a Slytherin scarf at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

Let the tour begin…

Once everyone from the dedicated time slot has gathered, you’ll get into a room for the introduction of the tour, and then to an amphitheatre where you’ll see a video about the making of the movies.

It’s nothing earth shattering, but to me it’s been a pretty emotional moment. I was very excited to go visit the Studio, and very excited by this Harry Potter weekend in general. It might sound silly, but Harry Potter has been such an important part of my life, for such a long time (since I was 7! 20 years ago!) that being here and seeing some emotional footage about the movies made me almost shed a tear. I talked about this to Simone and compared it to the love of he has for his football team. Something that has been with you most of your life, and probably won’t go away. Something you can pass along to your children.

On that note, don’t be afraid that the Studio will be full of children, as it’s not the case. And the children in there are just adorable – kuddos to the Potterhead parents: you did a good job! I thought my heart would explode when I saw two kids – probably twins – cursing each other with a lot of intention (“expecto patronum“, so no harm done). It made me think that as there’s no way I ever gift my kids with guns toys – maybe plastic swords – I might get them wands and tell them that if they want to fight, they can use fancy latin words for all I care.

Anyway, back to the tour!

First room: The Great Hall

This is where your dream comes true. It will be super hard not to pass beyond the barriers and sit down at one of the tables! I honestly just wanted to look around and day dream that this was where I would have diner, that I was in Hogwarts – finally.

Cuttlery on the tables in the Great Hall at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Ravenclaw Table in the Great Hall

Great Hall statues at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Hogwarts Crest in the Great Hall at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

Main room of the Studio

Then you’ll get into a huge place where you will see a lot of decors, props, all put together in themes. Look everywhere! It’s gonna be a lot to take in, but it’ll be great. You will spend a lot of time in this room!

Alice shooting props at the Harry Potter Studios in London

I won’t detail everything that you can see, because there are simply too many to do so. Know that there are also some activities: you can practice your wand waving for duels, ride on a magic broom, get a broom to go from the floor to your hand by saying “up”, try some visual effects, etc. I did most of them and it was a lot of fun!

Sign to Hogwarts at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

The Gryffindor Common Room and the boy’s dorm in Gryffindor tower

Ever dreamt of reading by the fire of Gryffindor Common Room and checking out how comfy Hogwarts’ beds were?

Gryffindor Common Room at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Alice shooting the Gryffindor Common Room at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Gryffindor Boys Dormitory at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Gryffindor Boys Dormitory beds at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

The Potions classroom

Can you guess I’m a fan?

The set of the Potions Classroom was one of my favorite! Can you believe all the props there are in there?! Potions, ingredients, textbooks, cauldrons… And the lighting of the room is just amazing to immerse the visitors in the atmosphere of the room.

Back of the Potions Classroom at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studios in London Left side of the Potions Classroom at the Harry Potter Studios Potions Classroom left side at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Potions bottles on a desk at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Cauldrons in the Potions Classroom at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Alice shooting the Potions Classroom at the Harry Potter Studios in London Advanced Potion Making book in the Potions Classroom at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Potions text book in the Potions Classroom at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

Dumbledore’s office

You can walk around a bit, but can’t cross the line before the desk of Hogwarts’ Headmaster. Even though you could have if you had been the 10 Millionth visitor!

Dumbledore's office at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Dumbledore's desk at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

Quidditch props

You could practically touch the Quaffle! This is also where you can get a broom to go from the ground to your hand by saying “up”.

Quidditch part of the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Quidditch Chest and props at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

The Mirror of Erised

That’s probably the most romantic or loving thing you can do at the Studio: see your reflection in the Mirror of Erised with the one(s) you truly love!

Mirror of Erised inscriptions at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Alice and Simone in the Mirror of Erised at the Harry Potter Studios in London

Props and sets that you’ll find all around the room

Do you know who wore a wig in the films? Now you’ll know for sure!

Fun fact: There’s a wig for Hermione Granger because they had to reshoot the scenes at the end of the last movie, when they’re all grown-ups. But Emma Watson had already cut her hair super short, so they had to make her a wig just for this reshoot!

Characters wigs at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studios in London

One of the coolest thing you can find on The Burrow set is the magical clock that I’d love to have!

Weasley Clock at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

Fancy regrowing a broken bone? You’ve got it: help yourself to a bottle of Skele-Gro!

Skele-Gro bottle at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studios

Forgot your wand? No problem, we’ve got you covered!

Wands at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

After taking in everything you could in this room and doing as many activities as you feel like, you will step into the Forbidden Forest to get to the other part of the Harry Potter Studio.

Sign to the Shrieking Shack at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

The Forbidden Forest

While it was not my favorite part, Simone has lots of fun with the buttons that unleash the thunderstorm, lights, etc.

Me, arachnophobic? How did you know?! It’s true that it was a pretty nice transition to the rest of the Studio and it was well done.

Spider in the Forbidden Forest at the Harry Potter Studios in Leavesden

The Platform 9 3/4 and the Hogwarts Express

Some more magical and emotional moments will happen on the replica of the Platform 9 3/4. Here, you’ll have plenty of time to take pictures with the cart, pretending you’re going on the other sidefrom Muggle King’s Cross to magical Platform 9 3/4.
You’ll also be able to take pictures of the Hogwarts Express and get inside to have a peek at the compartments (where you won’t be able to enter though).

Platform 9 3/4 to take the Hogwarts Express at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Platform 9 3/4 at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

Alice falling back on Platform 9 34 at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio
Don’t fall back while pushing the cart through the wall!!

Alice checking out Platform 9 34 at Harry Potter Studio in London

 

Alice pushing the cart on Platform 9 34 at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Alice and her Hogwarts Express ticket on Platform 9 34 at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Hogwarts Express at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

The books and paper props

As a book lover, words lover, and medievalist, I really enjoyed this part! I wish I could have held the books in my hands…!

Dark Arts Books at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio A History of Magic Book at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Plans of Hogwarts at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

After this, you’ll get to the cafe. Sit here to relax a little bit – you’ve seen most of the Warner Bros. Studio by now, but it’s not over!

The outside:
Knight Bus, Dursley’s and Godric’s Hollow

As written above, you’ll have to step outside during the tour. You will have the opportunity to see the Knight Bus, get inside the house of the Dursleys and be enchanted by the flying envelopes – and also see the Potter House at Godric’s Hollow from outside.

Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Flying envelopes of Letter to Hogwarts

The Special effects room – Creature Shop

Don’t you think Visual Effects are some kind of Muggle magic? Here is where you’ll see the other side of the magical universe: the techniques and props used to make everything appear as though they were real! From Gobblin masks to the Mandrake and the technique behind Dobby, you’ll learn a lot in this room. You’ll also be able to make Dobby move!

Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Book of Monsters Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Mandrake in a pot

 

Will follow some corridors where are exhibited some beautiful Harry Potter artworks that I didn’t even know of but everyone should see. And then…

Have a stroll in Diagon Alley

If you didn’t feel emerged in the Magical world yet (that would be pretty hard, but let’s pretend!), the next part of the Studio will definitely be it! You can take a stroll in Diagon Alley, as if you were going to do some shopping for your school supplies, find a new book on Potions at Flourish and Botts or maybe some pranks from the Weasley Shop!

Diagon Alley decor at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Ollivander Shop at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Apothecary in Diagon Alley at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Diagon Alley wall at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio Diagon Alley at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

The Castle replica: the cherry on top

The tour ends by an amazing magical sight: the huge replica of Hogwarts, that will put stars in your eyes.

Hogwarts Castle Replica at the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio

After the tour

After the tour, you might spend all of your knuts and galleons at the shop, and honestly we won’t hold it against you!

When you’re done, step outside to board the shuttle and get back to Watford Junction, away from the magic of the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio…


9 Replies to “Harry Potter Studio in London”

  1. This looks amazing! Having visited the traveling exhibit in NYC and both parks in Orlando, this is next! Also- love the comment about letting kids fight with fancy Latin words 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.