Check out these spots and start planning your Harry Potter adventure today!
If your Harry Potter obsession is getting out of hand and the studio tour just won’t cut it anymore, these real life locations from the films just might. So jump on your broomstick and discover the magic…
If you’ve been to Warner Bros. Studios, you probably know that Diagon Alley was eventually built into a massive set, but initially in the first movie, Leadenhall Market was used to shoot the exterior of the magical shops. The entrance to wizard’s pub, ‘the Leaky Cauldron’, is an optician in Bull’s Head Passage in Leadenhall Market in the City of London.
The Hogwarts Express Bridge
On its way to Hogwarts, in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets , the flying Ford Anglia lands on Glenfinnan Viaduct, on the West Highland line between Fort William and Mallaig in Scotland. There’s a regular diesel service, but if you want to cross the viaduct in a Hogwart’s Express-style steam locomotive, West Coast Railways run the Jacobite Stream Train during the summer season (May to October).
Hogwarts’ Great Hall
Yes, the incredible replica set was actually created for the films, but J.K. Rowling based Hogwarts’ Great Hall on the one at Christ Church, Oxford University. If you make your way to Christ Churcg in Oxford, you can take in the staircase the students at Hogwarts had to climb in order to get inside the Great Hall too.
Glencoe is a famous glen in Scotland that was featured in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban . Hagrid’s Hut and several other film sets were built in this beautiful valley, which offered up a spectacular backdrop to the adventures taking place onscreen. You’ll also recognise the Steall Falls at Glen Nevis from the Tri-Wizard Tournament in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire too.
Gringotts Wizarding Bank
Whilst Gringotts is located inside Diagon Alley in the books, the movie uses Australia House on the Strand as a location for the Wizarding Bank. Annoyingly access into the building will be refused unless you’ve got an Australian visa issue, but it’s pretty beaut from the outside too.
The Reptile House
London Zoo’s Reptile House is where Harry first discovers his gift for talking parseltongue (speaking with snakes) in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone . If you fancy chatting to snakes, or any other animals for that matter, London Zoo’s the place.
The Order’s Headquarters
12 Grimmauld Place aka Siruis Black’s house and the headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix was inspired by Lincoln’s Inn Fields – but Claremont Square in London was actually used as the exterior.
When the students get on the train at King’s Cross Platform 9 3/4 to go to Hogsmeade on an old steam train, they actually ‘get off’ at Goathland in North Yorkshire, the train station where it was filmed. Hogwarts has been edited into the background with special effects, but apart from that, it’s pretty much exactly the same as it looks in the film.
Platform 9 3/4
If you venture into King’s Cross station and wander over to platforms 9-11, you’ll find a sign that reads ‘Platform 9 3/4’. You can try and walk through it if you want, but you’ll probably just bump your head…
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