Top 10 Places You MUST Visit If You're a Harry Potter Fan

Script written by Savannah Sher
 If you’re a Potterhead, these destinations are sure to interest you. Harry Potter fans around the world are sure to love Harry Potter: The Exhibition. Rather than a simple museum-style collection, this traveling exhibit is set up to take place within recognizable set pieces of spaces such as the Gryffindor common room, Hagrid’s hut and the Great Hall. The exhibition has already been to cities in Europe, North America and Asia. Keep track of where it’ll be next so you don’t miss out! Alnwick Castle, located in Northumberland, has embraced its role as a Harry Potter fan destination by offering flying lessons on the same pitch where Madam Hooch taught the Gryffindors and Slytherins to fly in the first movie. They also offer an “on location” tour where you can see all the places that were used for filming in the first two Potter movies.  
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Top 10 Places to Visit If You're a Harry Potter Fan


You may not be able to visit the REAL Hogwarts, but you can come pretty close. Welcome to MsMojo and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 Places to Visit If You're a Harry Potter Fan.
For this list, we’re looking at the top locations around the world that you should plan a trip to if you’re still waiting for your Hogwarts letter.

#10: Harry Potter: The Exhibition

If international travel isn’t in your budget, don’t worry because this exhibition may very well come to you. If you’re lucky enough to have Harry Potter: The Exhibition stop in your city, you’ll get to see props, costumes and sets from the film series. Rather than a simple museum-style collection, this traveling exhibit is set up to take place within recognizable set pieces of spaces such as the Gryffindor common room, Hagrid’s hut and the Great Hall. The exhibition has already been to cities in Europe, North America and Asia. Keep track of where it’ll be next so you don’t miss out!
 

#9: Glenfinnan Viaduct

You may not know this Scottish railway viaduct by name, but when you see it… you’ll recognize it instantly. This portion of track has appeared in four of the Harry Potter movies, with the most memorable scene coming when Harry and Ron steal the flying car and soar above the Hogwarts express. Glenfinnan Viaduct is located in Loch Shiel, and for the best experience, you should research train times to ensure you manage to see one passing by. Scottish authorities have reminded fans that walking on the viaduct is extremely dangerous and that tourists should appreciate the passing train from a safe distance.

#8: The Lockhart

Canadians, you’re in luck! With locations in both Toronto and Montreal, The Lockhart is a dream come true for many Potter fans. With subtle and discreet theming that people who haven’t read the books or seen the movies might not notice, it’s the perfect spot to grab a drink and a bite to eat. With drink names like The Gin Weasley, Obliviate, and The Shacklebolt, there’s something fun for you to try not matter what your liquor preference. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that this expands to include more locations soon!
 

#7: College of Wizardry

Hogwarts may only be real in our heads, but at Czocha Castle in Poland, fans can live the wizarding world experience at a four-day larping event that takes place several times a year. For those not already into the scene, “larping” stands for live action role playing. Meaning that in this case, you’ll be fully immersed in a magical setting with great hall dinners, a sorting ceremony and even classes to attend. Keep in mind though that since The College of Wizardry isn’t officially affiliated with JK Rowling or Warner Brothers, you won’t see any Harry Potter branding here.

#6: Alnwick Castle

There’s no single location that was used to represent Hogwarts in the Harry Potter films, but rather a collection of different castles and buildings that came together to create that awe-inspiring final on-screen effect. Alnwick Castle, located in Northumberland, has embraced its role as a Harry Potter fan destination by offering flying lessons on the same pitch where Madam Hooch taught the Gryffindors and Slytherins to fly in the first movie. They also offer an “on location” tour where you can see all the places that were used for filming in the first two Potter movies.  

#5: Oxford University

Oxford is already a compelling tourist destination, but if you’re a fan of the Harry Potter movies, you’ll recognize many of the University spaces as filming locations. The most notable is Bodleian Library, which has been featured in four of the Harry Potter films. The Divinity School was transformed into the Hogwarts infirmary, while Duke Humfrey’s Medieval Library serves as the Hogwarts library. The cloisters at the New College will also look familiar as the Hogwarts courtyard. Finally, there’s the Christ Church college dining hall, which was never actually used for shooting, but rather served as inspiration for the Great Hall at Hogwarts.

#4: Edinburgh

The city of Edinburgh, Scotland may never feature in the Potter movies, but if you’re a die-hard fan of the books, you’re probably quite familiar with its significance: the city was home to JK Rowling for much of the time she was writing the series. During the creation of the earlier novels, Rowling famously wrote in cafes including Spoon and The Elephant House in downtown Edinburgh. Visit nearby Greyfriar’s Kirkyard where you’ll find the graves of one Tom Riddle, as well as his son who bore the same name. If you can afford it, you can even stay in the exact suite at the Balmoral Hotel where JK Rowling finished Deathly Hallows.

#3: Warner Bros. Studio Tour London

Hertfordshire’s Leavesden Studios served as the shooting locations for much of the eight Harry Potter films. Once shooting had completed however, a large portion of the studio was transformed into an attraction for Potter fans where sets from the movies have been preserved. On this walking tour, you’ll wander through the Great Hall and Dumbledore's office as well as the Forbidden Forest, learning about the creation of the films along the way. There are tons of props and costumes from the movies preserved there, so this is probably the closest you’ll come to entering Harry’s world.
 

#2: King's Cross

In the books and movies, Platform 9 3/4 serves as the magical portal to the Wizarding World, and now, due to the popularity of the series, it exists in real life. JK Rowling has always had a special connection with King’s Cross because her parents supposedly met on a train which had departed from the station. Today, there’s a cart pushed halfway through the wall between platforms nine and ten, so fans can re enact the famous scene when Harry first takes the Hogwarts express.
 

#1: Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Orlando)

If you dream of riding the Hogwarts Express, grabbing a Butterbeer at the Three Broomsticks and wandering the streets of Diagon Alley, then Universal Studios Orlando’s The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is your destination. With two distinct areas (Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley) connected by a functioning Hogwarts express, you can spend a day being fully immersed in the world of the books and movies. There are several incredible rides but the The Escape from Gringotts ride is unlike anything you’ve ever experienced - letting you take part in a key moment from the final installment of the series. We guarantee you’ll never want to leave.
Do you agree with our list? Which of these places do you want to see most? For more magical top tens published every day, be sure to subscribe to MsMojo.

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