Universal Studios, Orlando
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter located at Universal Studios Orlando, Florida is broken down into two sections- Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. Hogsmeade is located in the park Islands of Adventure while Diagon Alley is located in the park Universal Studios they are both connected by the Hogwarts’s Express train.
Hogsmeade is home to to Hogwarts’s Castle and is located in the Island’s of Adventure side of Universal Studios. The Hogsmeade section has a wide variety of rides, shops, shows and eateries to explore!
It’s important to understand before you visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter that if you intend on visiting the entire “world” you’ll need to purchase a 2 park or park to park ticket-ask your travel advisor (ME) because the “world” is in both parks and separated by Hogwarts’s Express. The ONLY way to ride Hogwarts’s Express is to have a park to park ticket. The Hogwarts’s Express is one of the highlight’s of the Harry Potter lands so it something you do not want to miss!
Hogsmeade will often be first on your list of places to visit, especially if you’re a Harry Potter fan and also because if you’re staying on site at a Universal resort OR if you booked your tickets with a certified Universal travel advisor (ME!) you will gain early entrance into Islands of Adventure-specifically the Wizarding World of Harry Potter so you’ll want to head to Hogsmeade first!
The rides you’ll find in Hogsmeade….
- Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure
- Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey
- Flight of the Hippogriff
- The Hogwarts Express (Park to Park)
It’s important to note that all Universal thrill rides have test seats which you can try before getting in the line. If you are tall OR heavy set you should definitely try the test seats before waiting in line. The seat light must turn green in order for you to be able to ride. There’s no use in your waiting in line only for you to be turned away at the ride. Each ride has a separate ride seat so if you’re wondering at all I recommend you test every seat. Also many rides are 3D so if you get motion sickness you should bring sea sick patches with you.
Hagrid’s– is a family friendly roller coaster with animatronics and is the most popular ride in Hogsmeade. If you’d like to ride this ride you should make it first on your list for our visit because the line gets long fats!
Forbidden Journey-this thrill ride take you through Hogwarts’s Castle with the gang, you must be 42 inches to ride. This ride does have dementors and dragons so can be a little scary for little ones. Don’t feel like riding? Do a walk through of the line or ask a Universal worker for a tour, if they have time they will walk you through!
Hippogriff-a true kiddie coaster that takes you through the Forbidden Forest. You must be 36 inches to ride.
Hogwarts’s Express Hogsmeade Station-The train ride that will get you back and forth between the two parks. You should ride it both way since each way has a different experience. You must have a park to park ticket to ride this ride. Tickets will be scanned before entering the train.
Dining at Hogsmeade
Hogsmeade has one restaurant, grab and go kiosks and a shop with some goodies so let’s explore those a bit!
Three Broomsticks– This sit down dining options is a quick serve restaurant that offers a mobile order options which I recommend using to save yourself from waiting at the register. You will still have to wait in the line but once you get to the front of the line you can show your server your order number and they will seat you. A server will then bring your order to your table. The restaurants at both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley have the same exact menu so don’t worry about missing something at one of them-simply pick one! You cannot make reservations but you can mobile order!
Hog’s Head Pub-You can grab an alcoholic drink, a butterbeer without the wait and ask for their secret item!
Kiosks-You can find fruit cups, pumpkin juice and butterbeer.
There are several shops in Hogsmeade…
- The Owl Post
- Dervish and Banges
- Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods
The Owl Post– Here you will find all sorts of things to write home from Hogwarts’s. Stationary, pens, envelopes, and you can even mail a letter home stamped from Hogwarts’s. I recommend bringing stamps from home. You can buy stamps at the Owl Post but they are regular flag stamps and they only sell them by the book, not one at a time.
Dervish and Banges– This is the place to find all your house spirit jerseys and quidditch supplies. You can also get your jersey personalized with your name on it at this shop!
Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods– Here you will find all the fun things Filch has confiscated from the students at Hogwarts’s Castle. Loads of what nots and trinkets! Look for the Marauder’s Map and find the footsteps moving!
Honeyduckes– Treats and sweets! Come get your fill of chocolate frogs and pumpkin pasties. Grab some butterbeer fudge!
Ollivanders-Come and let your wand choose you. If you want to have your chance and being the one who gets selected to be the person for wand selected head here first! You’ll notice a line outside with people waiting for the wand selection show but keep in mind it’s a random person who gets chosen and it’s only one person. However, every can buy a wand here! You can also buy your wand throughout the parks various stores. There is also an Ollivanders in Diagon Alley and that is the original location.
There are several shows hosted in Hogsmeade throughout the day and year. It’s always best to make sure you check your Universal app for up to date times and dates.
Tri-wizard Spirit Rally and the Frog Choir: These two shows can be found just at the bottom of the Hogwarts’s Castle area and last about 10 minutes long. You can often get picture’s afterwards.
Nighttime Lights: Depending on the season you can see a nightly lighting of Hogwarts’s Castle.
Dark Arts at Hogwarts’s Castle-This nighttime show is available only in the Fall season-check the Universal app for dates and times.
*Interactive Wands-if you chose to purchase an interactive wand at either Ollivander’s or another store you can stop by windows throughout both Harry Potter Lands to make magic happen!.
*Bathrooms-Make sure you use the bathrooms in Hogsmeade and listen for Moaning Myrtle herself…..
Part of the fun of being in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter World is also dressing in robes! I recommend purchasing those ahead of time to save money. You can find all my favorite Universal park must haves here.
Overall, Hogsmeade is an immersive experience and is not to be missed!
Need help planning your trip to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter? You can find me on Facebook at Callie at Wanderkeep Travel or on Instagram at Wanderingwithcallie or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and as always my services are complimentary when you book through me!
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