FEATURE: My Visit To Hogwarts

Posted 10 September, 2012 by Kristilyn in Bookish Things Event, Features / 37 Comments

This past December, I had the privilege of visiting FLORIDA with my hubs and my family. It. Was. Awesome. Most favourite part ever?


While I’d love to recap everything that we did on the trip, when it came time for my WITCH WEEK, I thought it would be the perfect time to show some pictures of everyone’s favourite place for witches and wizards. I mean, who DOESN’T think of Harry Potter when they think of witches?

When we first got to Universal Studios, we had to wait almost an hour until we were allowed in the park. I had read some books about how you had to get there EARLY in order to get all the rides in. And when it came to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter? Well, we made sure we were there SUPER early.

Once the gates were open, the park guards led us to the Wizarding World. We were allowed to walk behind him — not to run ahead of him — and eventually (this park is way in the back) we made it!

OK, not by the Hogwarts Express, but we made it nonetheless.

The FIRST thing we had to do was get in line for the rides! I was so unbelievably excited for The Forbidden Journey ride and heard that the wait times could be up to 3 hours for it, so we had to make sure to get on it ASAP. While I don’t have any pictures of it, mainly because it was super dark inside of Hogwarts and we couldn’t take video on the ride, it was the most amazing ride EVER. I wish I could ride it over and over again. It was fast, fun, SCARY, and full of so much Harry Potter goodness! Out of the few rides in the park, this was my favourite.

Of course, after the ride, I had to get myself a Butter Beer.

I hate to sound like a broken record, but Butter Beer rocks. It was about a thousand degrees outside, so getting a FROZEN Butter Beer was the most perfect thing. While I drank it, hubs and I took turns going through the single line for The Forbidden Journey, so we could experience it again. Single riding = best thing ever.

I took some videos while I was there, but they seem to be lost somewhere on my computer AND I’m betting that there’s some sort of copyright or something if I showed them. However, while hubs was on the ride and I was enjoying the Butter Beer a show came by! It was the TriWizard Spirit Rally. Very cool to watch!

One thing I would have LOVED to do was step inside Ollivander’s, but the line up was HUGE! We did settle on going into Dervish and Banges and looked at all the magical things and various Harry Potter memorabilia. We didn’t buy anything but it was all so tempting! We also looked through Zonkos and Honeydukes. So much fun!

We also wandered through the Three Broomsticks, which looks EXACTLY like it does in the movie!

In the end, I think hubs and I each rode The Forbidden Journey three times each, did Dragon’s Challenge (both rollercoasters), the Flight of the Hippogriff (where we saw Hagrid’s hut!); we had a Butter Beer, looked at the chocolate frogs, and watched magic in the store windows, and; we took tons and tons of pictures. One another one of our days, we did go back to the park, but the main ride was CLOSED, so we ended up taking more pictures and riding some of the other rides in the park — even though it’s hard to spend time in the rest of the park when something as COOL as the Wizarding World exists!

This was one of my favourite experiences EVER and I wish I could go back once a month to experience it! Or, at least, to take even more pictures! If you ever, EVER get a chance to go to Florida, be sure to visit the Wizarding World! Get there early so you can experience EVERYTHING!

Butter beer, anyone?

If there could be any element from a Harry Potter movie or book added to the park, what would you add?

© 2012, Reading In Winter. All rights reserved.


About Kristilyn

Kristilyn is a Canadian book blogger, music listener & creator, proud mama, and general lover of life. Her necessities include fuzzy socks, a library full of good books, a fully charged Kindle, copious amounts of tea, and chocolate. Swoon-worthy book boys are also welcome.

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37 Responses to “FEATURE: My Visit To Hogwarts”

  1. Wow. This post was so fun to read. I love seeing your pictures and reading your experiences. I lived in FL my ENTIRE life up until a few months ago, and I have not been to Wizardry World. I’m sad that it may never happen now that I love in Atlanta, BUT I will keep up my hopes. I freaking LOVE Islands of Adventure and hubs has never been, so maybe it can be a vacation destination. :)

  2. I’m so jealous!! I would love to go there!!! I must take Kailyn there when she is older! I’m glad you had a lot of fun! I used to have a friend who worked there, I was so jealous!

  3. I’m lucky to live just a couple hours away from Orlando. Since I have an annual pass to Universal Studios, I go a few times a year. While I love The Forbidden Journey, riding it makes me feel really sick, even with Dramamine. My most recent trip took place in the middle of August. While the rest of the group went on the ride, I instead opted to go on Dragon’s Challenge a few times. Not as good as The Forbidden Journey, but still pretty amazing in it’s own right.

    • You are lucky!! I do have to admit that The Forbidden Journey isn’t for everyone — it’s quite fast-paced and all over the place — but it sure is fun! Dragon’s Challenge is fun, too — I love that there are two different roller coasters!

  4. I wanna go there!! The one and only time I’ve been to Disney World, I was in Grade 5 – way before Harry Potter even existed. But, the in-laws just bought a place in Florida, so now my chances of going back have increased substantially!

    I can’t believe you didn’t buy any souvenirs!?

  5. melissaseclecticbookshelf

    I so want to go there!!! I know my fiance wants to go to Florida soon to visit his grandmother…maybe we can combine trips!

  6. This has me SO EXCITED! Such perfect timing to see a post like this, because I’m leaving for Florida on the 20th and will be going to Wizarding World while I’m there. I’m so psyched for all the rides and just experiencing Hogsmeade and seeing all the stuff. I think I want to try to go to Ollivander’s for sure, but we’ll see. I can’t wait to try Butterbeer!

    • Oh yay! I’m so excited for you! I think you’re going to LOVE it! And you’re going at a perfect time — hopefully it’s not crazy busy!

      Have a Butterbeer for me!

  7. No way! I can not even express to you how envious I am. I’ll make it there one day though… and hopefully the hype will have blown over a bit and the lines will be shorter? I can wish. I REALLY want to try butterbeer!! I think it would be really cool if they were to add a Gringotts train ride (though ideally, a bit less dangerous than it is in the movie) – and I think that is a definite possibly as they are planning to expand the park (replacing the Lost World) to make a Diagon Alley section. Or so are the rumours, anyway.

    • A Gringotts train ride would be EPIC! I hope that they add something like that. And a Diagon Alley part would be soo cool!

      I’m not sure the hype will EVER die down — it really is a lot of fun! I hope you make it there one day!

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