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The Ultimate Guide to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood

Welcome fellow muggles. If you are planning a trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood and are looking for a guide to help you get the most out of your experience, fret not - we have made one for you to make your time there memorable.

100 Universal City Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608


Harry Potter Rides

Take the ultimate journey through Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. This ride is the thrill of a lifetime that kicks off with a stroll down the academy’s familiar corridors that leads you to a fun filled flight above and throughout the castle grounds. With groundbreaking technology, this ride creates a fun-filled experience as you join Harry Potter and his friends on a magical adventure.

Flight of the Hippogriff is a fun roller to be enjoyed by the whole family. As you enter the Care of Magical Creatures grounds, you will pass by Hagrid’s hut and hear Fang’s barks as you approach the ride. While on the ride, you will travel around the pumpkin patch and past Hagrid’s hut, with fun spirals and instructions from Hagrid on how to approach a Hippogriff (a magical creature that is half eagle and half horse).

Harry Potter Shows

Experience Ollivanders, Makers of Fine Wands since 382 BC, where you can see a wand choose a wizard. Akin to the common ritual within the universe of the film, guests will witness the selection of one attendee to be selected by the perfect wand for them. An interactive experience like no other, you will see the both the wonder and chaos of magic as spells how haywire, and as they go perfectly right.

If you love music as much as you love this franchise, you must stick around long enough to catch a performance from the Frog choir of Hogwarts. These vocals of these students (each from the houses of Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff, and Ravenclaw), accompanied by the rumbles of their giant frogs (creating a smooth base sound) makes for a great acapella experience with familiar wizarding songs of the franchise.

If you want to catch another great performance, the Triwizard Spirit Ralley is just as fun and energizing as its name suggests. Have fun witnessing the students of Hogwarts, Beauxbatons, and Durmstrang generate excitement for the upcoming Triwizard Tournament. This fun show will not only be reminiscent of your own high school pep rallies but also invite you to feel part of the universe which it comes from.

Harry Potter Dining

Fresh Fruit, cold beverages, bottled beers, snacks, BUTTERBEER. This is the first cart you see as you enter the Wizarding World, as well it should be. To keep you from going hungry during your fun, this cart provides plenty of snack options that are perfect for a light meal to satisfy your appetite.

This is one of the more social food spots in the whole park. With good food options and opportunities to meet fellow park attendees. If you remember from the film, Harry Potter had his first taste of the sweet wizarding drink at this eatery, being a social hub for Hogwarts students for centuries. The detail to the film is to be noticed by the biggest fans of the franchise, such as weathered wood beams and cast-iron chandeliers. For a delicious meal, the Shepherd’s Pie and Fish & Chips come highly recommended.

To be found in the back of Three Broomsticks, this pub is famous for offering the unique Butterbeer and Pumpkin Juice that is beloved by guests. It also displays the hung head of the stuffed hog that may occasionally snarl at you. The Hog’s Head Brew, spirits and mixed drinks come highly recommended.

Harry Potter Shopping

If you had a great time watching the selection of a young wizard by their very own personal wand, perhaps you’ll want to find one yourself. This attraction provides the opportunity to find the perfect wand for you once the show is over.

A sweet tooth’s dream, this candy hut is a mandatory stop for guests looking to sample tasty treats. The store is filled with a variety of colorful sweets, many of which contain wizard trading cards in their boxes. From sweet candy to prank candy, to Butterbeer Fudge, you definitely do not want to miss this sweet factory.

Would you like to send a postcard with an authentic Hogsmeade postmark? The Owl Post sells a variety of Harry Potter themed stationery, stamps, etc. as well as toys. To make it more fun, you will also see a large number of owl hooting and moving in place. There is a post box available to drop postcards and letters to be delivered soon after.

For a good laugh, fun toys, and other great merchandise, head straight over to Zonko’s Joke Shop. With an intimate and cozy atmosphere, you can browse various cool items such as Pygmy Puffs and Screaming Yoyos (not joking). If your searching for a great prank toy, or just something cool to take home from your trip, this is definitely the place to stop by.

Dervish and Banges is the place to be for those who need a magical repairment, or need to stock up for Quidditch. It has all the items you need including The Monster Book of Monsters, T-shirts, Quaffles, brooms, etc.

Want to check out all the confiscated goods of Hogwarts? Here you can see such infamous items as the Marauder`s Map in person, as well as shop for cool souvenirs clothing, bags, key chains, jewelry, books etc. Rumor has it the Sorting Hat makes an appearance...

At Wiseacre’s Wizarding Equipment offers fun equipment for visitors to immerse themselves into the craft of wizardry. You will encounter cool novelty items such as crystal balls, compasses, hourglasses, house robes, and train station items.

At Gladrags Wizardwear you can find some great wizard wear, that makes you feel like a member of Hogwarts. With an array of authentic wizards’ robes and accessories all inspired by the four school houses of Hogwarts, shopping here is a fun and immersive experience for cosplay fans.

If you are not a fan of the series and looking for a more simple souvenir shop, Hogsmeade Station is the perfect place. With Platform 9 ¾-branded items including wallets, mugs, jewelry; you will find a great selection of items to take home as a memento of your time in the Wizarding World. Be sure to check out the lost luggage and hooting owls as well.


Harry Potter World Secrets

Cast Spells Throughout the Park (with Interactive Wands)

You can actually cast spells throughout the entire Universal park when you purchase an interactive wand within the Wizarding World. Once you wield one of these magical wands, as you make your way through the park, keep an eye out for the numerous gold plates; they have spell names and wand motions for casting them. The special wands also come with a map that directs you to all 11 plates.

Send Your Purchases from Honeydukes to the Park Entrance

If you have ever walked around a theme park, you know how annoying it can be to carry souvenirs and belongings around all day. Thankfully, the wizards working at the shops in Hogsmeade Village can have all of your purchases sent to the front of the park, where you can collect them later without having to carry them all day.

Butterbeer Fudge

While the Butterbeer drink is quite a well known beverage at the park, many people don’t know that they also sell the most amazing fudge. Sold in Honeydukes, the delicious candy shop at the entrance of the Wizarding World, this is a must try snack for all lovers of fudge, Butterbeer , and Harry Potter.

Hogwarts Castle at Night

The night experience of Hogwarts Castle is one like no other. When lit up at night, the houses of Hogwarts are a breathtaking sight to behold. This all occurs during the Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle projection show. Five-minutes long, this show is recurring in the evening and should be experienced if you are able to stay that long. It is also quite beautiful during the Christmas season as well.

Cho Chang's Yule Ball Dress is on Display

Cho Chang’s Yule Ball dress from the film, the one actually worn on set, is on display in the Gladrags Wizardwear store. You can also spot Hermoine’s dress hanging in the window, though it is just a replica.

Real Movie Props are Scattered Around the Park

There are a number of props from the Harry Potter movie sets scattered about as you tour the village and castle. The castle is hosts such props from the set as the chalkboard and desks, and the Hogwarts Express holds luggage used in the films as well. Tour the castle by getting on the Forbidden Journey ride.

Get Sorted (by the Sorting Hat) in Filch's Emporium of Confiscated Goods

The Sorting Hat in Filch's Emporium of Confiscated Goods is not always on display, but when there, it is quite an experience. After the Forbidden Journey Ride, as you enter through the shop, you can put the hat on and have it sort you and give you very real explanations for its decision.

The Haunted Bathroom

Although Moaning Myrtle’s home haunt is in Hogwart’s Castle in the films, she won’t be there at the park. She can be found instead in the village bathroom. Don’t be alarmed by the wails if you hear them.


Wizarding World Tips

Where is Harry Potter World?

Located at Universal Studios Hollywood - the towers of Hogwarts will be your first sign as it stands out and can be seen from anywhere within the upper lot of the park. Tucked away like the secret it attempts to be within the world of the films, you can find the entrance near the Universal box office towards the back of the upper lot.

Where is Hogwarts?

Technically speaking, it’s located in North England. In the Wizarding World of Harry Potter however, it is tucked in the very back and can only be accessed through the Forbidden Adventure Ride.

Tips For Avoiding Long Lines?

Universal offers front-of-line express passes ($199+, including admission) that offer access to a priority line for each attraction. If you don’t want to spend that much money, there are other ways to avoid long lines on your favorite rides. If you attend on weekdays, especially in the morning to mid-afternoon, you are less likely to hit long lines. It is also helpful to visit first thing in the morning or last thing at night if you plan for a full-day visit at the park. Those are the best times to be there in terms of line length and crowds.

How Much Money Do You Need?

It really depends on whether you are flying solo or have children with you. As is to be expected at amusement parks, things can get pretty expensive. If it's just you and you are a fan looking to buy a few souvenirs along with some themed food and drinks, you might want to plan on tucking away $100+ for the Wizarding World. If you only plan on grabbing just a small meal, drink, or some candy, you should be okay with $30+. However, if you have children with you, you’d be wise to have at least $100+ dollars saved for your meals, souvenirs, snacks, drinks, etc.

Wizarding World in Hollywood vs. Orlando?

The Universal Orlando Resort has the larger of the two Wizarding World of Harry Potter locations, spread out over two theme parks. Here, Hogsmeade is located in Islands of Adventure. Universal Orlando also has Diagon Alley, Gringott's Bank, and Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, which the California version does not. In addition, if you'd like to visit both sides of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter on the same day in Florida, you'll need a park hopper ticket. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in California only has one park and you can easily experience everything in one day.


Other Places to Experience Harry Potter in LA

3400 Warner Blvd, Burbank

This is one of the most popular studio tours in L.A. This studio is home to many classic films throughout history and many have left a piece behind to mark their presence there. While on the tour, fans will see remaining sets and backlots from iconic films and tv shows, such as Friends and Harry Potter. And for fans of the latter, there is the mini-Potter museum, full of props and costumes used in the actual films.

6925 Hollywood Blvd, Hollywood

This a landmark in Hollywood history. As a home to numerous film premieres in the past and present, this theater captured many historical and iconic moments in film history, including the photos of little Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint cementing their hand, foot, and wand prints on the sidewalk, among many others.

1356 Palmetto St, Los Angeles

The Obscure, an invite-only speakeasy in downtown LA, is one of the coolest cocktail bars in the city. This “bayou meets Hogwarts” theme and atmosphere is incredibly inviting and fun to bask in. As the first cocktail bar in the area owned by a distillery, its craft entails a combination of art, spirits, and experimental cocktails. It is reserved by invite only.

The Wizards Den

1233 Vine St, Los Angeles

For another great Harry Potter-themed bar, The Wizards Den is a cool place to check out. With fun magic potion decor and amazing drinks with witch’s brew pouring out, you will feel right at home in the Wizard World while enjoying a fun night out grabbing drinks with friends and family.

7001 Franklin Ave, Los Angeles

While not exactly an explicit Harry Potter-themed establishment, the Magic Castle is a private clubhouse that allows entrance only to members and their guests. It hosts a variety of fun activities and shows to immerse yourself in a world of magic; from full magic shows to sleight of hand specialists to miraculous illusions on stage.


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