As promised today's post is very Harry Potter themed! I was lucky enough to go to the studio tour in London recently and timed it so that we would be going when the Hogwarts Express exhibition opened!
Upon arrival you collect your tickets from outside (unless you had them posted to you) and then the fun begins! The entract is full of photos of the cast and quite a few props from the film! There are also some of the Wizards' chess pieces outside
You're given a time slot for when you can enter the tour, and whilst queuing to enter you go past the cupboard under the stairs, where Harry spent quite a few years of his life. After that you go in through the doors and there is a brief presentation, before being escorted through to the studio cinema to watch a history of the films/book franchise, it was really quite interesting to watch and there were a lot more people involved in making the films than I thought. Finally it's then time to start the tour, I was wondering where we exit the cinema as I could only see one rather tiny exit and the cinema was packed! When suddenly the cinema screen rolled up and...
The entrance to to the tour was revealed! Honestly this was much cooler to see in person that I'm describing. Everything here was so detailed and pretty huge as well! The tour guide asked anyone with a birthday to come forward so they could help push open the doors which I thought was a nice touch. (Slightly disappointed it wasn't my birthday!)
Once inside the guide explains a bit about the Great Hall and points out details that you may have missed in the films (Like the Hogwarts crest being inside the fireplace). The tables are set up down the sides of the hall as they would be for filming, and around them are the house uniforms. After the guide had finished explaining, we were free to wander around the exhibits.
Slythering, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Gryffindor
Teachers costumes - I love the way these were set up!
The next few photos are my favorite parts of the tour - if I posted every single photo I took (there are over 300) you'd be here all day!
Costumes from the Yule Ball. These were Harry's , Cho's, Viktor's and Hermione's.
The stunning drinks table from the Yule Ball.
Wigs and costumes from the film.
The Leaky Cauldron! This thing was huge!
Boy's Griffindor dormitory. (Though I think that's a Ravenclaw scarf in the background!)
This was really awesome. It's the corridor from the Leaky Cauldron - it's actually a model that gets smaller and smaller the further it goes on to get that awesome effect!
Gryffindor common room and civilian costumes for Harry, Ron and Hermoine
Entrance to Dumbledor's office - this was so awesome and is definitely one of my favorite photos.
Inside Dumbledor's office - Portraits, Pensieve and others!
Tri-Wizard cup and Egg
Potions class and more costumes!
Quidditch uniforms and broom sticks
Hagrid's Hut and The Weasley home
Voldermort and his Death Eaters - this was really creepy how real the floating body looked.
Hogwarts express! Look how awesome it is! It's just amazing to look at in person and you can go in one set of carriages that they've set up to look like they would have in the films over the years. (I don't have photos from this as it was too dark inside)
Hogwarts express logo and Harry and Ron!
Graphic design from the film, it's amazing how many different things there were to look at here. I was given a Hogwarts express badge whilst passing by here as well! From here you get to the back lot where you can stop for Butter beer and other food/drinks - we skipped this as we'd been forewarned that Butterbeer tastes like Iron-Bru & milk!
Outside was the Knight's bus, Privet Drive and a the Potter's house. There were also more chess pieces and the flying car, but it was so busy we couldn't get near it.
On the Hogwarts bridge! This was pretty fun - you could walk across this and take photos.
Special effects! After the back lot you go into the special effects and making of exhibits. Some of these heads are really realistic which is quite creepy. There were also full size copies of the main cast which was even creepier they looked so real!
Diagon Alley and Gringots
Paper models of the whomping willow and Hogwarts. From here I heard a few people 'Oh Wow' round the corner of where we were, but we couldn't see anything yet and wondered what they were exclaiming at...
That'd be this, the gigantic model of Hogwarts.
This was literally the most impressive thing here, it was so, so detailed and beautiful.
Wand boxes from Olivander's - Did you know every single box from the shop was hand written? It must have taken forever to make them!
This was pretty much the end of the tour, which exits into the gift shop where you can just about buy any Harry Potter merchandise you can think of. It's quite expensive but I did buy a t-shirt! It was a really fun day out. What I would say though is that it was over a little quick - The first tour guide said it would take around 3 hours to get around all the exhibits, but it took us a little over an hour to see absolutely everything. I'd still go again though as I'm sure it'd be just as good the second time around as well!
I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I did writing it!
Ta-ta for now,