The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a must-visit for anyone who is and has been a Potterhead. For the 2018 Celebration of Harry Potter, my husband and I decided to visit the famous attractions. While I found a lot of helpful tips online, I realized there were still quite a few information most blogs left out. Here, I’ll try to fill in the gaps.
- The Dragon at Diagon Alley only breathes fire when it’s dark enough. While people tend to say she – yeah, the dragon’s a female – does it every 10 to 15 minutes, they left out when that would start. During the three days we spent waiting for her to let loose her famous flames, we only got to see it twice during our last day. Remember, it happens during dusk.
- You can see Hagrid’s hut while in line for The Flight of the Hippogriff ride. Actually, you don’t even have to ride it. There’s a space for you to take pictures without bothering the crowd, as long as it’s short enough that you don’t cause much of a commotion. You can even hear Fang barking inside!
- Remember to make your presence known if you’re taking pictures/videos. Because of the huge crowds in the park, people usually won’t notice – or will outright ignore – you holding up a camera. This gets really annoying when you’re trying to document a spellcasting because people will block you, even if your companion is obviously posing in front of them.
- If you want to take a picture/video through the illusion wall in Platform 9 ¾, ask the people behind you if they can wait for a few seconds. In our experience, people don’t really care and will cut in front of you.
- Speaking of taking pictures, be sure to snap them quickly. Other guests might be nice enough to wait behind your photographer but it’s better to be polite and not hold everyone up for a shot.
- Eat during odd hours. The restaurants in Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade fill up really quickly, and you may stand in line for an hour just to order your food. Snacking is easier than standing in line with hangry people.
- Casting spells work better with small, calmly paced motions. The sensors don’t always cast fast movements. The easiest way to think about casting spells is like using a remote (your wand) giving commands to the sensor.
- Skip the Express Pass. The rides have the least amount of people when the park opens, and you can finish a ride in less that 5 minutes. This is also true for an hour before the park closes. If you have a list of must-ride attractions, you can head there as soon as you get to the park, or save it until the end of the day.
- Buy a drink before lining up for the restaurants. Even if you do eat during odd times, it may still take a while for you to get your food. To help ease the waiting time, get a drink to enjoy while queueing.
- Take it all in. Universal Studios did such an amazing job bringing the wizarding world to life. You’ll see lots of hidden details and little easter eggs along the way. Everything is absolutely breathtaking so it will be easy to fully immerse yourself in all the magic.
I hope these tips help you enjoy your trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I will be posting more about out trip, weighing in on which butterbeer was the best, and other topics, so keep checking back in to stay updated!