January 03, 2015

Induction day at Hogwarts

Was probably one of the highlights of the year!  Ever since Dumbledore's letter arrived by owl inviting the whole family over for the day we have been counting down to our visit.

Hedwig took a particular liking to me.

Hedwig and I are Harry Potter Studios

The Warner Bro's Studio Tour offers a unique behind the scenes insight into the magic of the Harry Potter film series. We were booked on the 1 O'Clock tour and the Studios were buzzing with fellow wannabe wizards and witches!

Harry Potter Studios

Harry Potter is one of the few series of books that I have actually read from cover to cover and couldn't put down! I've grown-up with Mr. Potter and have secretly been waiting for my Hogwarts admission letter for the last 15 years...   

We grabbed a few customary magical snacks, which you may recognise from Harry's first trip on the Hogwarts Express.

Chocolate frog at Harry Potter Studios
There were walls and walls of magical treats and sweets to choose from, but the chocolate frogs and fizzing whizzbees were my favourite!

The Sorting Hat ceremony was a nerve wracking experience for everyone, what team colours would the sorting hat decide for us all?

If my letter had arrived all those year's ago I definitely would have been a Griffindor, so I grabbed my scarf and we made our way to the Great Hall.

I won't go into too much detail, but the Harry Potter Studios is very organised and after a small introduction by some very enthusiastic Harry Potter staff, Aunty Joy pushed open the huge wooden doors and revealed the Great Hall in all its glory!

Featuring the original stone floor and two rows of the house tables, with a delicious Christmas feast spread out for all to drool over...

You could easily imagine the floating candles and the enchanted ceiling.

The Great Hall at Hogwarts, Harry Potter Studios
It was spectacular. Everyone was buzzing as they absorbed the atmosphere!

It did actually almost feel like we were really there... 

The studios is home to the majority of the Harry Potter props and sets from all the films. A vast collection really, you don't realise actually how much stuff is needed to create these kind of films and how much work goes into bringing them to life.

Amongst which the beautiful ice palace from the Yule Ball...

The Potions classroom.

Pete even flagged down the Night Bus whilst we wandered around Privet Close, which was very exciting - we all jumped aboard for a quick snap!

Like I said the sets kept at the Harry Potter studios were fantastic... remember this one?

Diagon Alley was by far my favourite, the lighting was particularly lovely. It felt so magical!  And the Harry Potter theme tune hummed in background as you wandered through...

You could actually imagine bumping into Harry Potter or any of the Weasley's whilst doing a spot of Saturday shopping!

I really liked the room with all the blue prints and architectural sketches...

Featuring mini mock-up's of actual sets made from paper, all carefully pieced together by hand.

And then the moment we'd all been waiting for arrived...  

Hogwarts itself, the gigantic Castle sat in the middle of a huge low lit room - it was actually breathtaking. 

A huge set that must have taken an incredible amount of man hours to create - all those tiny details...each brick, each glass window... incredible!

And because it was Christmas time in real life, Hogwarts had been given a fine dusting of snow too!

We took our time exploring the grounds, taking in the full 360 views of Hogwarts, from high to low - from all angles.

Afterwards we wandered through to Olivander's and got measured up for our wands!!!

Ceiling to floor shelves of hand painted boxes of wands all inscribed with names from those who worked on the set of the films.

It wasn't long before we put our new wands to good use and gave our first set of spells a whirl...

I seriously envy Harry Potter and all those wizards and witches... being a muggle is mediocre in comparison. 

How does it go again? Levi-o-saaah!

Harry Potter Studios was an utterly DESIRABLE DAY OUT, it almost felt like it could be real...

Tickets are £28 per person (check it out here) - and worth every penny.  Go on! Grab your broom and get a move on.