The Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden, opened it’s doors to the public on March 31 2012, giving millions of fans their chance to experience the world of Harry Potter as never before.
Some reviews for the tour said being able to see the sets as they are now runs the risk of taking away the mystery and magic created by the blockbuster films.
However, I couldn’t disagree more. As a lifelong fan of both the books and the movies, I pre-booked my ticket last October, regardless of the rather steep price of £28 per person. From start to finish I was as excited as the many children experiencing the tour with their parents.
With plenty of ‘wow!’ moments (that I won’t divulge for fear of spoiling the surprises), the studios are just incredible.
Inevitably, you will probably be queueing for a while to get in. But what with Harry’s first bedroom ‘the cupboard under the stairs’ along with a number of portraits of the Dursley family lining the walls, before you know it you will be entering into the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
The one-way tour leads you through all the highlights of the eight smash-hit films, from The Great Hall to The Ministry of Magic.
You can have a photo in front of the Dursley’s, climb on-board the Knight Bus and gaze into the Mirror of Erised, all of which do not disappoint in real life. Midway through the tour you can even try a pint of Butterbeer! Have your Galleons, Sickles and Knuts at the ready.
The highlight for me had to be the breathtaking Hogwarts Castle. A miniature version (which really is best described as a bigature, given the fact it towers over all the visitors), lit up to show sunrise to sunset at Hogwarts.
At the end of the tour inevitably comes the overpriced gift-shop. Stacked to the ceiling with everything from Chocolate Frogs to Nimbus 2000′s it’s easy to get lost browsing all the Wizarding world has to offer.
Regardless of the price tag, the tour really is a must for anyone who has grown up longing to receive that letter from Dumbledore… So grab what’s left of your student loan and apparate on over to The Warner Bros. Studios.