Hogsmeade

Are you looking for the best family vacation destination ever?

Potter heads and muggles alike will enjoy the magic found at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. This ever expanding park in Universal Orlando Resort has delicious food, thrilling rides, and excitement around every corner. Those planning on tackling the park in a single day need to plan ahead, here is a brief breakdown of a day in the enchanting world of magic! 

Our first tip is to arrive early! This is a popular destination for good reason. When you approach the entrance to the park, you enter through Diagon Alley, the famous street where future witches and wizards go to purchase supplies. Before entering you can stop and take a picture by the purple Knight Bus. The driver Stan should be around to pose with you. Don’t miss a glimpse of number 12 Grimmauld place before entering either. Kreacher the house elf appears in the window every few minutes to glare down. After photos it’s time to enter Diagon alley, your first steps into the Wizarding world. 


Diagon Alley

There is so much to see it can be overwhelming but we recommend heading straight to Ollivanders Wand shop. The park has multiple spots to use the interactive wands sold at the shop. I highly recommend purchasing one at the beginning of the day so you can enjoy all the magical stunts. After Ollivanders, explore the many other wizarding shops such as Magical Menagerie, where you can purchase a pet owl or maybe just interact with the other unique animals. Other shops sell items like wizarding robes, spell books and any equipment a young witch or wizard might need. One place worth noting is Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes, Fred and George’s joke shop that is full of mischievous fun. 

After a bit of shopping head over to Gringotts bank to take out a little gold and ride Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts. You can’t miss this attraction due to the escaped dragon on the roof, breathing fire every 15 minutes. This ride is very popular so try to get in line early in the day. When you exit the ride it might be time to rest so grab a butterbeer from one of the many locations and vendors. Hot, cold, or frozen this stuff is good. A delicious caramel tasting drink with a rich creamy butterscotch foam on top. This is one treat you do not want to miss.

Hogwarts Express

After you have had your fill of Diagon Alley, hop aboard the Hogwarts Express to Hogsmeade; located across the park in Adventure Island. Its a quick but entertaining trip. Once in Hogsmeade your first stop should be Hogwarts castle. This ride is very popular so the line can get long. However the castle is full of interactive things to see as you wait. After Hogwarts, explore the other attractions in the park and make sure to stop at the famous Three Broomsticks for a bite of traditional english food when you get hungry. Hogsmeade is also home to Honeydukes. The candy and sweets shop that offers all the famous wizarding world treats such as Chocolate Frogs and Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans!

Hogwarts castle

Finish the most magical day of your life with a colorful light show against the stunning Hogwarts castle. Make sure to get your fill of souvenirs and treats before you leave, and grab a butterbeer for the road. From the snowy rooftops of Hogmeade to the carefully crafted castle art, a visit to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is truly like no other.

Find more family vacation ideas here.