If you’re a fan of Harry Potter and all the magical things that come along with the story, then you’ll love this travel location bucket list. These spots are practically as magical as the hippogriff himself if that’s even possible. Were you aware that you can take magic lessons on castle grounds, or that you can even sign your name on the wall where Rowling herself began writing this amazing series?
As a Potterhead, you should be aware of the details that surround the storyline, but perhaps you didn’t know some of the places and activities there that are mentioned on our list. After you read through it, we think you’ll soon be booking a ticket to visit all of these themed spots around the world. There are magical castles, long train rides and secret shops where you can buy all of your wizarding necessities. So buckle up, because this is going to be a magical ride.
Whether it’s platform 9 3/4 or Hagrid’s Hut from Prisoner of Azkaban you seek, this list will give you the perfect bucket list for all things Potter.
10. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Florida, and California, the USA
You could choose to visit either the Florida-based or the California-based Harry Potter world when you’re traveling around the United States. There are few differences between the two locations, aside from the fact that the one located in Los Angeles is newer. If you visit the one in California, you can also stroll down Hogsmeade. And if you take the Florida route, the one in Orlando actually has Diagon Alley. So you won’t miss out on much, no matter your choice.
9. Warner Brother’s Studio Tour, London, England
This is a tour that offers a behind-the-scenes look at the Harry Potter world. You can take a look at all of the costumes, sets, and the props that were used in the films, which were filmed there for over 10 years. You should make sure that you book online, though, and you should do so several months in advance because the tickets are selling like candy. And get your galleons ready, because the ButterBeer is a bit expensive.
8. Platform 9 3/4, King’s Cross Station, London, England
If you’re visiting London or going on a Harry Potter tour, of course, you have to take the time to visit one of the most popular spots that have crossed over from the wizarding world into ours! Just make sure that you’re patient and that you have enough time. Apparently, if you’d like to take a photo as you’re going through the wall, you’re going to have to wait – for several hours. But it’s all worth it, especially if you get some Gryffindor gear for the photo-op!
7. Glenfinnan Viaduct, Scotland
This spot is out in the open in Scotland. That means you should get some shoes that you won’t mind getting wet or muddy. But that’s practically no sacrifice for the view that you’ll get in return! Just a simple Google search, where you type in ‘Harry Potter Bridge’ will have you looking at this location. And if you’re lucky enough to visit during the right time, you may even end up seeing the train that passes on the bridge. And just for a moment, you can pretend that Harry himself is on that train.
6. Glencoe, Scotland
If you’d like to visit part of the set from Prisoner of Azkaban, then you’re going to want to visit Glencoe. That’s because back in 2003, this is where Hagrid’s Hut, along with the smoking chimney and the pumpkin patch, was actually located. Although the sets have since been taken down, to give nature some time to recover and freshen up from all the filming, you can still visit Glencoe and take in the beautiful scenery. Plus, you can learn about this location being used as a set in a few different films as well.
5. Piccadilly Circus, London, England
This is a popular location even when you’re not going down the Harry Potter travel destination route. Piccadilly Circus is a great place where you can take a break from all the shopping and watch as the world passes you by. Relax as you watch the people rushing along in one of London’s most crowded squares. Also relish in the memory that Harry, Hermione, and Ron almost got hit by a London bus here while they were running away from William and Fleur’s wedding.
4. Freshwater West Beach, England
Freshwater West is a beautiful windswept beach, and it’s also one of the most consistent spots for surfing all over Wales. This is the location of the Shell House, which can be seen in the final two Harry Potter films – Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows. If you don’t remember what happened here, let us refresh your memory. This place is where Harry and his friends were trying to find refuge from Lord Voldemort. This is also where Dobby was buried if you’d like to pay your respects.
3. Alnwick Castle, North Umberland, England
This is the castle–the Hogwarts castle. It’s the castle that you can see in the first two Harry Potter movies, and it’s a location that has been continuously filled with tourists since– and for good reason. Apparently, aside from having a nice afternoon stroll on the grounds, the tourist location offers wizardry and broomstick training, if you’re into that sort of thing. But let’s take a moment here and be honest with ourselves: Who isn’t into that kind of thing, right?
2. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Osaka, Japan
If you’re visiting the Universal Studios in Japan, it doesn’t really matter whether you’re a Harry Potter fan or not. Just going through the gates is enough to be transported into a magical universe. In order to avoid the last minute rush, always get your tickets in advance, and on the day itself, make sure you also arrive early. Plus, you can save time on taking photos by heading straight to the rides first because most visitors start out by taking all the pictures that they can in the beginning.
1. Durham Cathedral, England
This is one of the United Kingdom’s best Norman buildings, and it’s also the exact same place where Harry sets his owl flying in the first film. It’s also the exact location where Ron was vomiting slugs in The Chamber of Secrets. And if that’s not enough for you, there’s also one more popular set that was filmed in this location. This cathedral is where Professor McGonagall herself was teaching all of the young wizards how to turn the animals into water goblets!