Up until the last couple of years I’ve had a tradition of going to the cinema for my birthday. I guess I was lucky in that the new Harry Potter film always came out around then. I can still remember when I saw the Half Blood Prince and the death eaters fly through London and destroy the millennium bridge, in the IMAX it was in 3D and it looked amazing. So last Thursday I had a Clem free day out with my friend Daisy to go and visit Hogwarts!!
We went to the Harry Potter studios for Hogwarts in the Snow. This was actually my second time going to the tour but my first in the snow. I couldn’t wait to see it all Christmassy and snowy, they have also added the Hogwarts Express since I last went so I was super excited to see that. I loved the books, and read them over and over again. I wasn’t that keen on the films straight away but I soon got hooked on them. The tour starts as soon as you join the queue. You can see the cupboard under the stairs, you then enter a room and watch a short presentation on the hype of the films and then the screen goes up and you are standing right in front of the doors to the great hall.
Yep that is me opening the doors into the Great Hall with the tour guide!! Those doors are heavy. I already knew that they always get someone with a birthday to open them, I did keep quiet in the hope that a child might be celebrating their birthday but no one said anything or stepped forward to open them. Daisy virtually pushed me to the front and said it was my birthday so I got to do it! Even though this was my second time seeing the Great Hall it still made me go ooh and ahh. It’s all decorated for Christmas with trees all done in the house colours. Crackers on the tables and Christmas puddings on actual fire!
I could go on forever about the tour, there is so much to see and look at. There are two studios joined by a backlot where you can see Privet Drive or jump on the knight bus. The Hogwarts Express is a new addition to the tour and it’s really cool. You can walk through the carriage, looking in all the compartments that they actually used for the films. The first studio has the sets like the great hall, gryffindor common room, dumbledores office, the weasleys kitchen and hagrids hut. One of the things I noticed is just how small they actually are, they definitely did a good job with camera angles when filming it!
I love seeing all the costumes, make up, special effects that they used and made for the films. The staff that work there are really friendly, and if you want to ask any questions about the things on display you can. We even got to see Harrys scar that was in a box! It was kinda gross and scabby looking. I have decided though that my main goal in life is to dress like Bellatrix or one of he who must not be named’s gang. All black every day, definitely my teenage goth coming out there. Failing that Luna, she had some pretty amazing costumes.
As far as days out go it was really good. They say the tour can take 3-3.5 hours, we actually spent almost 5 there!! It was busy when we went and if you want to do all the green screen photo opportunities like riding a broomstick, sitting in the car then you can be queuing a while. If you are a harry potter then it’s definitely worth going to. It really makes you appreciate and realise just how much work goes on behind the scenes of making a movie.
The model of Hogwarts is so impressive. As you walk in you can’t really tell just how big it is, but as you walk around and down you begin to see just how much work and detail has gone into it. It’s definitely worth going just for that! Personally I can’t wait to introduce Clem to it, there was a little girl probably about 4/5 walking around in robes and she looked so cute. She was obviously a big fan, she was so excited about everything. Has anyone else been on the tour before? Do you have a favourite character or do you hate Harry Potter?