Tag Archives: Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Sneak Peek of the Creatures in Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure

From the Universal Orlando Resort Blog:

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

Universal recently revealed more about the magical creatures you’ll encounter on Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventurethe new epic adventure opening June 13 in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade at Universal’s Islands of Adventure.  It will be the most immersive, highly-themed coaster experience yet, and take you on a thrilling journey with Hagrid to the Forbidden Forest to discover the wizarding world’s rarest magical creatures.

Now through April 19, stay tuned to the Universal Orlando blog as we give you a first-ever look at some of the creatures you’ll encounter…including one that’s never been seen in the films. A new creature will be revealed each day at 11 a.m. EDT to prepare you for the incredible things you may see during your trip into the Forbidden Forest as part of Hagrid’s Care of Magical Creatures Class.

Devil’s Snare

While Devil’s Snare isn’t a creature, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to mention this perilous plant from the wizarding world – often strangling people who touch it with its dexterous vines. Devil’s Snare flourishes in damp, dark environments and it has a strong dislike of light and fire – remember that for your journey!

Speaking of your journey, Devil’s Snare is one of the many challenges you’ll face on Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure. You may even find yourself entangled in a thicket of this dangerous plant but remember to remain calm! If you don’t, you may end up entangled in hundreds of its vines…

And a fun fact about Devil’s Snare, it made its first film appearance in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone when the brave Hermione told her friends how to defeat this dangerous force.

Our fourth creature is a majestic being not to be confused with a horse or human.

Cornish Pixies

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

Cornish pixies are electric blue tricksters who love to create mischief – often at the expense of others. These mischievous creatures fly, and have also been known to seize unwary humans by the ears and deposit them at the tops of tall trees and buildings – poor Neville Longbottom…

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

In Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, you’ll see these troublesome creatures wreaking havoc on an infamous blue car… and in places you may not expect. They’re about 13 inches tall and you’ll find more than 20 pixies throughout your adventure. Happy hunting!

Fun Facts:

  • According to Pottermore, Cornish pixies can produce a high-pitched jabbering that’s only comprehensible to other pixies
  • Cornish pixies made their first film appearance in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets during Gilderoy Lockhart’s Defense Against the Dark Arts class

Fluffy, the Three-Headed Dog

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

Fluffy is a giant three-headed dog that’s known for being the trusted guard dog of the Sorcerer’s Stone. And, as many of you know, Fluffy has a weakness – he falls asleep to the sound of music.

In Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, you’ll confront this gigantic, beloved creature deep in the Forbidden Forest. Proceed with caution – he’s a guard dog first and foremost. And in this new adventure, Fluffy weighs 8,000 Ibs., which is roughly as big as two standard Muggle cars.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

Fun Facts:

  • In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Fluffy belongs to Hagrid, who adopted him from a “Greek chappie” he met in a pub
  • Experts on Pottermore say Fluffy was inspired by Cerberus – the dog that in Greek mythology guarded the gates of the Underworld – and, just like Fluffy, he fell asleep to the sound of music
  • Fluffy made his first and only appearance in the film, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Top 5 Reasons to Add a Day at Universal to a Disney World Vacation

There are so many exciting things to see and do in Orlando that it can be hard find to do them all during one vacation! Although you may not need to spend a week exploring Universal Orlando Resort, it’s a great add on to a Disney World vacation! You can add a day at Universal to your Disney vacation to experience the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, minions, Transformers, and more!

Here are the top five reasons why you should add a day at Universal Orlando Resort (or maybe a few) to your Disney World vacation:

  1. Harry Potter: The biggest draw for most families to visit Universal Orlando Resort is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. It is the ultimate experience for any Harry Potter fan. You can walk the streets of London, ride Hogwarts Express, drink butterbeer at Three Broomsticks, fly with Harry, and so much more.
  2. Super Heroes, Dinosaurs, Minions, and More: Visit with all of your favorite super heroes at Marvel Super Hero Island at Islands of Adventure, try the new Marvel Character Dinner, and feel the gamma rush on the Incredible Hulk coaster. You can explore Jurassic Park at Islands of Adventure to get up close and personal with Blue at Raptor Encounter, watch a dinosaur egg hatch, and embark on a daring raft ride. You can become a minion on Despicable Me Minion Mayhem or enjoy breakfast with Gru, the girls, and minions. The Simpsons and SpongeBob Squarepants can also be found at Universal Orlando Resort!
  3. Volcano Bay: Universal’s new water theme park is unlike anything you’ve ever experienced before. From a relaxing beach to adventurous water rides, there’s something for everyone to enjoy and somewhere for everyone to cool off. The TapuTapu wearable allows you to even enjoy other attractions and activities in the park while you wait for your turn to ride!
  4. Thrill Rides: Universal Orlando Resort is full of thrill rides in all three of their parks! You can feel the rush of adrenaline on The Incredible Hulk Coaster, Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit, Revenge of the Mummy, Skull Island: Reign of Kong, Krakatau Aqua Coaster, and more.
  5. Seasonal Events: Universal Orlando Resort hosts a number of seasonal events throughout the year, many of which are included with general park admission. You can celebrate Mardi Gras at Universal, Florida’s biggest party every February and March. Or, Rock the Universe with contemporary Christian artists in early February. Universal also hosts the nation’s premier Halloween event, Halloween Horror Nights. And, the whole family will love the holidays at Universal featuring Grinchmas, Universal’s Holiday Parade featuing Macy’s, Christmas in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and more.

We can help you add a day at Universal Orlando Resort to your Disney World vacation without the hassle of renting a car. You can learn more about our exclusive shuttle to Universal from any of the Disney World hotels here.

Your Complete Wizarding World of Harry Potter Guide for Universal Orlando Resort

From the Universal Orlando Resort Blog:

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

Many people have been waiting their entire lives to experience The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. After reading the books and watching the films, actually stepping foot into the stories is a phenomenal experience. This handy Wizarding World of Harry Potter guide will help you make the most of your experience at Universal Orlando Resort.

With Hogsmeade in Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Diagon Alley in Universal Studios Florida, there are two unique lands to explore. We’re listing out each and every activity you can enjoy during your next trip!

This Wizarding World of Harry Potter guide is organized by type of activity: attractions, experiences, food and drink, shopping, shows, and hidden gems.

ATTRACTIONS

Harry Potter and the Forbidden JourneyHogsmeade

  • Soar above the castle grounds as you join Harry Potter and his friends on an unforgettably thrilling adventure, coming face-to-face with an array of magical creatures.
  • Pro Tip: Make sure to take your time in the queue for this one to appreciate all the details of the Hogwarts corridors including Dumbledore’s office, the Defense Against the Dark Arts classroom, the Gryffindor common room, and more.

Flight of the HippogriffHogsmeade

  • Bow to Buckbeak as you board this family-friendly roller coaster that spirals and dives around the pumpkin patch, and then swoops past Hagrid’s hut.
  • Pro Tip: This ride is great for little witches and wizards who might be a bit spooked by Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey or Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts.

Hogwarts Express: Hogsmeade StationHogsmeade

  • Board the famous train and head towards King’s Cross Station in London. You’ll need a park-to-park ticket for this one.
  • Pro Tip: The experience is completely different on the way back from King’s Cross Station to Hogsmeade (see below), so you’ll want to ride it twice.

Hogwarts Express: King’s Cross StationDiagon Alley

  • Enter King’s Cross Station and walk straight through a solid brick wall onto Platform 9 ¾ to board the Hogwarts Express. You’ll need a park-to-park ticket.
  • Pro Tip: If you want to journey in Harry’s footsteps, do some shopping in Diagon Alley and then hop on the Hogwarts Express to start your next term!

Harry Potter and the Escape from GringottsDiagon Alley (pictured)

  • Take a journey through cavernous passageways that lead deep underground as you climb aboard this mind-blowing, multi-dimensional ride.
  • Pro Tip: For those looking for a more intense ride, ask the attendant if they can accommodate you towards the back of the ride vehicle. However, all seats offer a thrilling adventure!

EXPERIENCES

See a wand choose a wizard at Ollivanders, Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley (pictured)

  • Step inside this iconic shop and watch an Ollivanders wandkeeper go through the process of pairing a witch or wizard with just the right wand.
  • Pro Tip: You might be the lucky witch or wizard chosen!

Cast spells with your interactive wand, Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley

  • Look for medallions on the ground throughout Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley for opportunities to practice your magic. Simply follow the directions at your feet and look out for amazing surprises.
  • Pro Tip: You’ll need an interactive wand for this one, and inside the box is a map telling you where all the spells are located.

Send a letter through Owl PostHogsmeade

  • Here, you can mail a letter complete with a special Hogsmeade postmark.
  • Pro Tip: This is a great way to let your friends and family know you’re thinking about them during your trip to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Meet the Hogwarts Express conductor, Hogsmeade

  • Oftentimes you can find this jolly gentleman next to Hogsmeade Station near the front of Hogsmeade.
  • Pro Tip: Take a photo with him to remember your Hogwarts Express journey.

View The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts CastleHogsmeade

  • On select nights, you can see some amazing projection mapping that transforms the castle in a dazzling display of lights, special effects and music.
  • Pro Tip: Scope out the best view early in the day to make sure you know where you want to stand later.

Meet the Knight Bus conductor, Diagon Alley

  • On the London embankment, you’ll find this three-storied bus and its amiable driver.
  • Pro Tip: You can also chat up the shrunken head hanging over the steering wheel.

Get your moving photograph at Shutterbutton’sDiagon Alley

  • Create a portrait of yourself that actually moves and purchase a collectible photo album in commemoration.
  • Pro Tip: Borrow props and costumes or bring your own!

Exchange your Muggle money at the Gringotts Money ExchangeDiagon Alley

  • Have a conversation with the goblin behind the counter before trading your U.S. currency for Gringotts bank notes in $10 or $20 denominations.
  • Pro Tip: The banknotes can be used for purchases within Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade, and at select locations throughout Universal Orlando Resort.

SEASONAL: Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry PotterHogsmeade and Diagon Alley

  • Diagon Alley, London, and Hogsmeade are transformed with festive décor and brilliant lighting during the holidays. Not only do shows incorporate some favorite holiday tunes, but look out for special treats and drinks! The atmosphere is simply brimming with excitement.
  • Pro Tip: Plan some time to take in all the detail of the beautiful decorations.

FOOD & DRINK

ButterbeerHogsmeade and Diagon Alley (pictured)

  • You simply can’t come to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and not try Butterbeer! This concoction is reminiscent of butterscotch and shortbread. Find it at many of the restaurants listed below and various snack stands throughout Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley.
  • Pro Tip: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter has six unique ways to enjoy that delicious Butterbeer flavor, so come with an empty stomach.

Three BroomsticksHogsmeade

  • This cozy, snow-capped inn offers tasty British fare including Fish And Chips, Shepherd’s Pie, Cornish Pasties, Turkey Legs, and Fresh Vegetables. View a breakfast menu here and a lunch and dinner menu here.
  • Pro Tip: Take some time to explore – you never know what you might find.

Hog’s HeadHogsmeade

  • This pub in the back of Three Broomsticks is the perfect place for a Butterbeer and Pumpkin Juice, along with domestic and imported beers, the pub’s exclusive Hog’s Head Brew, Gillywater (bottled water), specialty drinks, wine, spirits, and mixed drinks.
  • Pro Tip: Pay attention to the stuffed hog’s head over the bar – it just might snarl at you.

Leaky CauldronDiagon Alley

  • A small, grubby-looking pub and inn where you’ll find foods like Bangers and Mash, Fisherman’s Pie, Toad in the Hole, Ploughman’s Platter, and more. View a breakfast menu here and a lunch and dinner menu here.
  • Pro Tip: This location is very popular among visitors at lunchtime, but the friendly attendants will make sure you have a great experience.

Florean Fortescue’s Ice-Cream ParlourDiagon Alley

  • Here, witches, wizards, and Muggles of every age can indulge in scoop and soft-serve ice-creams with fantastic flavours like Butterbeer, Granny Smith, Earl Grey and Lavender, Chocolate Chili, Sticky Toffee Pudding, Salted Caramel Blondie, Chocolate and Raspberry, and more.
  • Pro Tip: Keep an open mind… some unusual flavors may surprisingly delight you!

Fountain of Fair FortuneDiagon Alley

  • Named for one of the fables in The Tales of Beedle the Bard, this location serves a variety of beers and other beverages (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic).
  • Pro Tip: You can also get Butterbeer ice-cream here.

The Hopping PotDiagon Alley

  • Nestled within Diagon Alley, you can cool off with a variety of delicious drinks at this walk-up counter.
  • Pro Tip: This is a great place to grab a snack while watching a show in Carkitt Market.

SHOPPING

Ollivanders, Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley

  • In search of the most essential wizarding item? Look through the thousands of boxes filled with wands waiting to choose their wizard.
  • Pro Tip: There are many other variations of wands in addition to character wands

HoneydukesHogsmeade

  • The shelves of this legendary sweet shop are lined with all manner of colourful treats including Acid Pops, Cauldron Cakes, Fizzing Whizzbees, Chocolate Frogs, and Bertie Bott’s Every-Flavour Beans.
  • Pro Tip: Every Chocolate Frog comes with a wizard trading card – collect them all!

Dervish and BangesHogsmeade

  • From magical items like Sneakoscopes, Spectrespecs, and Omnioculars to Quidditch supplies like Quaffles, Golden Snitches, and brooms to Hogwarts clothing, journals, and stationary, this shop offers it all.
  • Pro Tip: This is an ideal place to find accessories featuring the Hogwarts houses, so it’s a must-see.

Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated GoodsHogsmeade

  • Peruse items taken from students who got on the wrong side of the school’s resident caretaker, Argus Filch. You’ll find Hogwarts t-shirts, shoulder bags, caps, scarves, house crest banners, and stationary; plus authentic movie prop replicas, clothing, toys and more.
  • Pro Tip: Keep your eyes peeled for the Marauder’s Map and watch as inhabitants move about Hogwarts castle.

Owl PostHogsmeade

  • Here, you’ll find correspondence materials like stationary, quills, seals, and ink.
  • Pro Tip: You can even pick out your very own owl to take home.

Weasleys’ Wizard WheezesDiagon Alley

  • This colourful emporium is the novelty joke shop run by identically ingenious prankster twins Fred and George Weasley. Shop for all manner of mischief such as magical jokes, tricks, and toys including Pygmy Puffs, U-No-Poo pills, Skiving Snackboxes, and Puking Pastilles, and much more.
  • Pro Tip: Don’t miss the dazzling display of never-ending fireworks exploding at the ceiling.

Madam Malkin’s Robes for All OccasionsDiagon Alley

  • Build your wizarding wardrobe at this cheerfully appointed shop. Fashionable guests can buy authentic replicas of Hermione’s Yule Ball gown and Dumbledore’s robes. You’ll also find Hogwarts uniforms, ties, scarves, hats, sweaters, and cardigans as well as jewelry.
  • Pro Tip: Model your potential purchase in front of the mirror and it just might talk back to you.

Borgin and BurkesDiagon Alley

  • This dark and dusty Knockturn Alley shop is infamous for shady patrons. As you walk among the dimly lit shelves and displays teeming with malevolent relics, you’ll find Death Eater masks, skulls, Harry Potter film costume replicas, apparel, accessories, jewelry, and collectibles.
  • Pro Tip: Look (and listen) for the Vanishing Cabinet just like the one Draco Malfoy once used to sneak Death Eaters into Hogwarts.

Magical MenagerieDiagon Alley

  • Purchase a variety of plush toys including Crookshanks, Fang, Buckbeak, Fluffy, and Scabbers. Also available are Cornish pixies, ferrets, Pygmy Puffs, and an assortment of owls, including Pigwidgeon and Hedwig.
  • Pro Tip: Try out your Parseltongue when you peek in at the snake in the window from outside the store.

Quality Quidditch SuppliesDiagon Alley

  • This is the destination for everything you need to play the most popular sport in the wizarding world, including Quidditch sweaters, brooms, Golden Snitches, Bludgers, Bludger bats, Quaffles, and more.
  • Pro Tip: You can even pledge your allegiance to professional teams like the Holyhead Harpies or the Chudley Cannons, Ireland or Bulgaria.

Sugarplum’s Sweet ShopDiagon Alley

  • Discover a wealth of wizarding treats – every nook is stocked with tasty temptations like Bertie Bott’s Every-Flavour Beans, Acid Pops, Exploding Bonbons, Pink Coconut Ice and more.
  • Pro Tip: Feed Bertie Bott’s Every-Flavour Beans to unsuspecting friends and family and brace yourself as they just might end up with a flavor like earthworm or earwax.

ScribbulusDiagon Alley

  • Find all the authentic writing supplies a witch or wizard could need including ink and inkwells, feather quills, parchment, journals, envelopes, stationery sets, seals, bookmarks, and backpacks.
  • Pro Tip: Everything here is perfect for back-to-school or your office.

Wiseacre’s Wizarding EquipmentDiagon Alley (pictured)

  • Browse a variety of wizarding wares and essential supplies including crystal balls, telescopes, compasses, crystal phials, and hourglasses plus apparel and accessories from your Hogwarts house.
  • Pro Tip: You can have packages delivered to the front of the park or your Universal Orlando hotel room so that you don’t have to carry them all day.

Wands by GregorovitchDiagon Alley

  • This long-time rival to Ollivanders also creates some exceptional wands. Here, you can choose from a wide assortment of Harry Potter character wand replicas, and more.
  • Pro Tip: Boxes with gold labels are interactive and will help you practice magic in-park.

SHOWS

Hogwarts Frog ChoirHogsmeade

  • Hear the vocal stylings of this small choir of Hogwarts students, accompanied by the smooth bass rumbles of their giant throaty frogs.
  • Pro Tip: Look in your park map or on the official Universal Orlando app for times.

Triwizard Spirit RallyHogsmeade

  • Cheer on the colourful procession of students from the legendary wizarding schools of Hogwarts, Beauxbatons, and Durmstrang as they lead the excitement for the Triwizard Tournament.
  • Pro Tip: Stick around after the show for a potential meet-and-greet opportunity.

The Tales of Beedle the BardDiagon Alley

  • Watch as adept players perform a trunk show using stylized scenic pieces, props, and puppetry. See them retell two famous tales of Beedle the Bard, a 15th-century author of wizarding fairytales, including The Fountain of Fair Fortune and The Tale of the Three Brothers.
  • Pro Tip: This stage is right near The Hopping Pot (see above), so grab a snack and enjoy!

Celestina Warbeck and the BansheesDiagon Alley (pictured)

  • Sway and groove to the dulcet tones of wizarding world sensation, Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees. The swinging show features never-before-heard songs including “A Cauldron Full Of Hot, Strong Love,” “You Stole My Cauldron But You Can’t Have My Heart,” and “You Charmed The Heart Right Out Of Me.”
  • Pro Tip: Dancing and singing along is allowed!

HIDDEN GEMS

Call the Ministry of Magic, Diagon Alley (Pictured)

  • Try entering the telephone booth in London and dialing 62442 (`MAGIC`) to see what you get connected to.

See 12 Grimmauld Place, Diagon Alley

  • Keep an eye out for the Black family`s loyal house-elf, Keacher™ – you might just see him.

The Monster Book of Monsters, Hogsmeade

  • A Book with Bite`- Stop inside Dervish and Banges to view this beastly required reading for Hogwarts students taking the Care of Magical Creatures class. It’s caged for a reason.

Be sure to keep an eye out on all the hidden gems inside The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort.

So much to see and do! Where to, first? Tell us in the comments section below.

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Interactive Wand Guide

From the Universal Orlando Resort Blog:

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

So, you’re planning your trip to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter!

You have your robe…

Butterbeer…

and your interactive wand…

Wait, what do you mean you don’t have a wand? You don’t know where to get them? You know what they do though? What?! Okay, come with me and I will guide you along your journey.

What do the interactive wands look like?

Let’s start off simple, there are 22 interactive wands in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter inspired by the wands of your favorite characters from the Harry Potter film series.

Pretty awesome, right? And (in case you needed even more options) there are also interactive wands that are not based on a character and are instead unique to the witch or wizard’s personality.

Now that you are torn between 2 or 3 different wands, let me show you where you can find them in our parks.

Where do you go to find the wands?

In The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley, you can find interactive wands at Ollivanders

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

as well as Wands by Gregorovitch.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

In The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade, you can find interactive wands at Ollivanders

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

as well as the wand cart on the path to Hogwarts castle.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

If you have the time, we recommend visiting the wand keeper in Ollivanders so you can witness the magic of a wand choosing its witch or wizard.

Wands can also be found at the Universal Store in front of Universal Studios Floridaand at CityWalk.

What do the wands even do?

Now that you have your interactive wand, you are now ready to cast spells all along your journey!

In total, there are 16 spells you can cast in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley and 9 in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade.

Inside your interactive wand box is a double-sided map that comes with the details of all the spell casting locations.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog
Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

At the location, a gold medallion shows wizards and witches where to stand as well as the correct wand movement for the spell.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

With some practice, you’ll be creating magic in no time. Here’s a quick glimpse of Reparo, one of the many spells you can cast. This charm fixes something that has been broken.

Now you’re all set! You’ve got your robe, Butterbeer, and an interactive wand! Which wand is YOUR favorite all throughout #WizardingWorldOrlando? Tell us on TwitterInstagramFacebook or in the comments below!

Top 14 Wizarding World of Harry Potter Experiences at Universal Orlando Resort

From the Universal Orlando Resort Blog:

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

There are too many must-do experiences at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter that simply can’t be covered in a brief blog post. It’s one of those things in life that you truly have to immerse yourself in and experience for yourself.

There is so much to see and do that we have highlighted the top 14 must-do Harry Potter experiences for you to enjoy on your next visit to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando.

And trust me, if you’re anything like me, you’ve been dreaming of these must-do experiences since you first read the book!

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

1. Entering Diagon Alley.

There is something about that moment you first step foot into Diagon Alley and stand there in awe at something that can only truly be described as out of this world. When this moment happens, take your time, soak it in, and get your camera ready when you hear the Dragon on top of Gringotts Bank begin to rumble!

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

2. Have a wand choose you at Ollivanders

Makers of Fine Wands since 382 BC. The wand that chose me was a 11″ holly, phoenix feather core, relatively supple.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

3. Get fitted with house robes at Madam Malkin’s Robes for All Occasions.

Change out of those Muggle clothes and into some authentic wizardwear.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

4. Find a furry—or non furry—creature companion at Magical Menagerie.

Toad, owl, or cat? You can choose whichever you fancy.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

5. Stop by Quality Quidditch Supplies to pick up some house gear.

Whether on the field or in the stands, Quality Quidditch Supplies has everything you are looking for including brooms, Golden Snitches, Bludgers, house sweaters, and more!

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

6. Stock up on pranks at Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes.

Do you have a mischevious sibling that pranks you every chance they get? Well, you can pick up some pretty great pranks at Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes to help even the score.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

7 .Exchange your Muggle money for wizarding currency at the Gringotts Money Exchange.

A REAL exchange with a goblin for some Gringotts™ bank notes. Easy enough, right?

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

8. You know at some point you’ll need to visit the vaults in Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts…

…but be careful, I’ve heard escaping is impossible.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

9. Pass through the brick wall to Platform 9 3/4 and board the Hogwarts Express.

Get ready to journey to Hogwarts on the Hogwarts Express! Certainly the ideal way to transport yourself from Diagon Alley to Hogsmeade and back again.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

10. Honeydukes is a surefire way to cure your sweet tooth!

Honeydukes is an ideal first stop in Hogsmeade. Not sure which colorful sweet to try first? I highly suggest you try the delicious Chocolate Frogs, each box also includes a special card celebrating a famous witch or wizard.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

11. Pick up some letter writing supplies at the Owl Post.

Don’t forget to pen your friend back home – they’re sure to appreciate a letter, especially one with a special Hogsmeade postmark!

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

12. Explore the mysteries of Hogwarts castle as you enter and experience Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey.

Wander around the halls of the castle like a true Hogwarts student. Look carefully, there may be some hidden gems only a true fan would notice!

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

13. Missing anything? Head to Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods.

Filch is always sticking his nose in Hogwarts students’ business. But hey, by raiding his confiscated goods you can find some really great items.

Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog

14. My ideal way to end a magical day at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter—Butterbeer at Three Broomsticks.

Personally, I love a mug of cold Butterbeer at the end of a long day. Did you know there are 6 Butterbeer treats in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter?

Make sure to share your The Wizarding World of Harry Potter must-do’s on TwitterFacebook or Instagram with #WizardingWorldOrlando.

Top 12 Toys and Tricks to Find at Weasleys Wizard Wheezes

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley has many shops that long-time Harry Potter fans dream of visiting.

Most fans know the name of this infamous store; but for those who don’t, allow me to introduce you to Weasleys Wizard Wheezes: the joke shop founded by Fred and George Weasley. These unpredictable twins had a lifelong dream of opening a place to share their fun creations with all witches and wizards.

Some of the products are widely known, but there are many that the common Muggle may not be familiar with. Take a look at this list of 12 popular items you can find at this one-of-a-kind shop!

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

 1. Fever Fudge, Puking Pastilles, U-No-Poo, Fainting Fancies and Nosebleed Nougat

This range of sweets has been useful in getting students out of class for years at Hogwarts. Each sweet will give the user a different symptom such as fever, vomit, unconsciousness, or a nosebleed. You can pick the one you want to try or experience a variety of them with the Skiving Snackbox.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

2. Screaming Yo-yo

The name definitely shrieks for itself with this magical toy. Its distracting screams can be heard from across the room!

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

3. Decoy Detonator

This popular item is typically used to create a diversion in a time of need. You’ve actually seen it in action before in the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallow: Part 1. Once dropped, there’s no way to catch it!

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

4. Love Potion

This powerful brew doesn’t need much of an explanation. Give it to the person you desire and see the magic happen yourself.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

5. Chattering Teeth

Wind it up and the conversation will never stop!

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

6. Extendable Ear

Looking to eavesdrop? Get an Extendable Ear to listen to any quiet conversation from up to 12 feet away. Make sure your cat doesn’t eat it though… Yes, we’re talking about you, Crookshanks.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

7. Boxing Telescope

I wouldn’t suggest taking a peek through this telescope. The Boxing Telescope is said to land a punch on whoever squeezes it, but we would never confirm or deny it.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

8. Pink Elephant

This may look easy, but it only took twenty tries. Keep you and your friends easily entertained by seeing how many attempts it takes to perfectly flip this toy to land on its feet.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

9. Duck on Bike

There’s an assortment of Muggle toys inside the shop as a tribute to the twins’ father, Arthur. He was fascinated with Muggle artifacts, so there are a few vintage toys you can get like the Duck on Bike, Elephant on Bike and Robot Lilliput.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

10. Pygmy Puff

These furry little creatures are one of the Weasleys’ most popular bestsellers. They come in different shades of pink and purple, can be found in three different sizes and you may even get one that purrs! There’s also a fun naming ceremony for each Pygmy Puff that gets adopted.  The giant bell in the store is rung to announce the adoption and the new owner gets to tell everyone the name they chose.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

11. Fanged Flyer

This type of Frisbee is just as fun as any other… as long as it is used with caution. The Fanged Flyer gets upset when you pet its teeth, which is why the handler’s glove is included with your purchase.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort)

12. Cycling Dolores Umbridge

Last, but certainly not least, is the toy everyone loves to hate. Turn it on and watch her go!

These items (and many more) can all be found in Weasleys Wizard Wheezes at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida.

Which item from Weasleys Wizard Wheezes is a must-have for you during your next visit? Let us know in the comments!

Siera is a travel agent with Destinations in Florida, Universal Studios Travel Agency of the Year 2010, 2011, & 2012. She would love to help you plan your next Universal Orlando vacation at no cost to you. Contact Siera today at siera@destinationsinflorida.com or at 734-771-1290 for more information or your free, no obligation quote. 

Top 8 Reasons Why You Need to Ride Hogwarts Express Both Directions

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Straight from the pages and silver screen, Universal Orlando Resort is the only place where you can actually ride the famous Hogwarts Express. From The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade to Diagon Alley and back again, traveling between Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida aboard Hogwarts Express is a must-see attraction unto itself.

There are hundreds of reasons to choose the Hogwarts Express as your mode of transportation, but we are sharing with you the top eight reasons today:

1. First and foremost, the aesthetics of the stations and attraction are true to the movies and books, so you’ll feel like you’ve actually been dropped into the story.

2. Each station offers unique opportunities for epic photos to share with your friends and family.

3. Not to mention, the architecture is totally stunning.

4. And remember, the Hogwarts Express is the best way to stay immersed in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter when traveling between the two lands.

5. At King’s Cross Station, you’ll find yourself at Platform 9 ¾. You can even walk through the iconic wall; but I’m leaving that bit out because it’s so much better when you experience it for yourself!

6. When traveling from London to Hogsmeade, be sure to look out for a number of cameos from your favorite characters, like this fly-by of Hagrid and his magical motorcycle.

7. And from Hogsmeade to London the story and cameos are completely different, so look out for moments like this one with Fred and George *casually* plugging their Weasleys’ Wizarding Wheezes store in Diagon Alley.

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

8. Finally, riding the Hogwarts Express both ways allows you the opportunity to experience both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley, which is a true one-of-a-kind experience that you can only get here.

Of course, there’s much more mind-blowing stuff to see and do on the Hogwarts Express. What’s your favorite part of riding!?

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Thanks Universal Orlando Resort Blog!

Explore the Wizarding World with the Back to Hogwarts Scavenger Hunt

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

The time of year has come to go back to Hogwarts. As all fans know, every September young witches and wizards prepare to take their journey to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

Celebrate this moment at Universal Orlando Resort with the Back to Hogwarts Scavenger Hunt, a choose-your-own-adventure photo scavenger hunt that will take you on an adventure through The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Are you ready to choose your own unique path back to Hogwarts? Follow these steps for the Back to Hogwarts Scavenger Hunt:

Remember, using the Floo Network to get from place to place is cheating.

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley Scavenger Hunt Map

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade Scavenger Hunt Map

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Thanks Universal Orlando Resort Blog!

Eight Unique Wizarding World of Harry Potter Souvenirs

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Half the fun of visiting The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is immersing yourself in the stories and scenery you love. One thing that transports you is seeing happy witches and wizards wearing robes and scarves, carrying wands. But next time you’re ready to head to Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade, keep a lookout for these eight unique Wizarding World of Harry Potter souvenirs that are inspired by the Harry Potter films. They’re sure to delight every fan.

Quidditch Supplies

Ever wanted to play with a Quaffle? In search of a good set of Quidditch bats? Or maybe you’re looking for a top-of-the-line broom… They all exist here!

Available at: Quality Quidditch SuppliesDervish and Banges

Owls

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Every Hogwarts student needs a companion. Pick out your very own plush owl and start your inevitable adventures together.

Available at: Magical MenagerieFilch’s Emporium of Confiscated GoodsOwl Post

Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes Products

Calling all pranksters and mischief makers: this is your happy place. Extendable Ears, Decoy Detonators and shelves full of goodies will leave you ready to join the ranks of the best in the business. Read about individual products here.

Time-Turner Necklace

Whether you’re looking for a way to add a few courses to your schedule or hoping to travel back in time to save a friend, this necklace will do the trick.

Available at: Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods, Madam Malkin’s Robes for All OccasionsWiseacre’s Wizarding Equipment, Dervish and Banges

The Marauder’s Map

We solemnly swear you’ll be up to no good after taking this one home. Just be sure to watch out for Filch while you wander the corridors at night.

Available at: Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods

Death Eater Masks

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

For those who favor the Dark Arts, Borgin and Burkes carries some truly amazing collectibles. These masks look great on any shelf.

Available at: Borgin and Burkes, Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods

Molly Weasley’s Famous Sweaters

Who doesn’t want a sweater lovingly crafted by the Weasley’s amiable matriarch? Happy Christmas, Harry.

Available at: Madam Malkin’s Robes for All Occasions, Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods

Hermione’s Yule Ball Gown

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Prepare to turn heads when you have your turn in Hermione’s jaw-dropping gown. This one is sure to impress even the most famous of international Quidditch players.

Available at: Madam Malkin’s Robes for all Occasions

Keep in mind, if you forget to buy anything during our vacation, there is a great selection in our online merchandise store.

Now, which are your favorite Wizarding World of Harry Potter souvenirs?

Siera is a travel agent with Destinations in Florida, Universal Studios Travel Agency of the Year 2010, 2011, & 2012. She would love to help you plan your next Universal Orlando vacation at no cost to you. Contact Siera today at siera@destinationsinflorida.com or at 734-771-1290 for more information or your free, no obligation quote. 

Top 5 Wizarding World of Harry Potter Shows You Have to See at Universal Orlando

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

When most people think of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort, they think rides, robes, and copious amounts of delicious Butterbeer. Those are, of course, some of my favorite things. But they’re far from all there is to experience.

One of my favorite things to do is to kick back for a bit and watch one of the five Wizarding World of Harry Potter shows in Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade. (Usually with Butterbeer in hand though, let’s be real.)

Here’s a quick look into each show that you won’t want to miss.

Hogwarts Frog Choir:

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

It’s just like your high school a capella choir, except with, ya know, several frogs filling in the bass section. This choir, performing at Hogsmeade in Universal’s Islands of Adventure, has a representative from each of the four Hogwarts houses and some soothing ribbits that will be sure to get stuck in your head all day. What more could you want?

Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees: 

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

You might know the sensational Celestina Warbeck as Molly Weasley’s favorite singer. But anybody who’s seen her live in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley in Universal Studios Florida knows she’s SO much more than that. I dare you to not dance along to her live show.

Triwizard Spirit Rally: 

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

We have spirit for the Triwizard Tournament at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade where students from Hogwarts, Beauxbatons, and Durmstrang lead the excitement in celebrating their international magical cooperation. It’ll have you wishing your school was this cool.

The Tales of Beedle the Bard: The Tale of Three Brothers

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

Ah, the theater! There’s nothing quite like relaxing in Diagon Alley as students from the Wizarding Academy of Dramatic Arts perform two storiesfrom The Tales of Beedle the Bard. You’re probably familiar with The Tale of Three Brothers from the Deathly Hallows, but you’ve never seen it quite like this. Watch as the story comes alive featuring props designed by Emmy-award-winning designer Michael Curry.

The Tales of Beedle the Bard: The Fountain of Fair Fortune

(Photo: Universal Orlando Resort Blog)

The second Beedle the Bard fable you can catch the Wizarding Academy of Dramatic Arts performing in Diagon Alley is The Fountain of Fair Fortune. Much like The Tale of Three Brothers, this show also features some seriously impressive puppets, and even more impressive performances by our local Diagon Alley theater troupe.

What’s your favorite show at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter? Tell us in the comments below. See you at a future show!

Siera is a travel agent with Destinations in Florida, Universal Studios Travel Agency of the Year 2010, 2011, & 2012. She would love to help you plan your next Universal Orlando vacation at no cost to you. Contact Siera today at siera@destinationsinflorida.com or at 734-771-1290 for more information or your free, no obligation quote.