Making of Harry Potter Tour Opens Near London on Saturday, March 31, 2012

Fans of the Harry Potter film series, can now walk the same cobblestone streets as Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, and Emma Watson, the actors who played Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger and brought the best-selling books to life.  On Saturday, March 31st, Warner Bros. Studios UK will open the gates for the first time for guests to tour the Harry Potter film sets just north of London.  Continue reading for more details and videos.

Update April 1, 2012

Highlight video of the March 31st grand opening ceremony for the “The Making of Harry Potter” studio tour.  Red carpet arrivals include Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy), Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley), Bonnie Wright (Ginny Weasley), Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood), and more.

Original Article from March 30th follows below:

Warner Bros. Studio Tour London is a behind-the-scenes walking tour which immerses guests into the world of film-making.  The tour features authentic sets, costumes and props that showcase the British artistry, technology and talent that goes into producing world famous and successful movies, created at Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden.  The Studio Tour will initially focus on the Harry Potter film series which has made the Studios its home for over 10 years.

For this walking tour, the actual sets from the 8 films have been rebuilt and outfitted with costumes and props from the movies.  Guests will be able to see and explore:

  • the Dursley’s house on 4 Privet Drive
  • Diagon Alley, complete with store fronts of Ollivanders wand shop, Flourish and Blotts, Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes, Gringotts Wizarding Bank and Eeylops Owl Emporium.
  • Hogwarts Castle sets such as, the Gryffindor common room, the boys’ dormitory, Hagrid’s hut, Potion’s classroom, and the Bridge where the final battle took place.
  • the Ministry of Magic with the Magic is Might statue and Professor Umbridge’s office.

Props from the films on display will include Harry’s Nimbus 2000, Hagrid’s motorcycle, and the triple-decker Knight Bus to name a few.

One of the signature attractions on the tour will the Great Hall in Hogwarts’, where students were sorted into houses on the first day of school and also the location of floating candles and magnificent feasts.  Guests will walk on the same solid York stone floor laid 11 years ago, and see the solid oak and pine house tables built for the films and discover graffiti carved into the tables by Hogwarts students.

The centerpiece of the “Making of Harry Potter” tour is the hand sculpted 1:24 scale model of Hogwarts Castle used in the making of the films.  This model was used for aerial photography, and digitally scanned for CGI scenes.  Hogwarts Castle sits nearly 50 feet in diameter, and contains over 2,500 fiber optic lights to simulate lanterns and torches of students walking through the hallways.  As guests watch the castle a day-to-night light cycle will occur every 4 minutes to show off the lighting effects.

Studios officials estimate it will take approximately 3 hours to see everything on the tour.  Your ticket ensures a timed entry, but there is no limit to the amount of time you may spend in the attraction.  The Warner Bros. Studios Tour site has a Studio Cafe for dining options, and there will naturally be a souvenir shop for purchasing gifts and collectibles.

If you plan on seeing the “Making of Harry Potter” exhibit, tickets must be purchased in advanced.  No tickets will be sold on site at the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London.  Tickets cost £28.00 (~$44) for adults ages 16 and up, £21.00 (~$33) for children ages 5-15, and those guests 4 and under are free.  A family rate is available for £83.00 (~$132) – good for 2 adults and 2 children, or 1 adult with 3 children.  The “Making of Harry Potter” studio tour is expected to be extremely popular, and it is recommended you purchase tickets as far in advance as possible as many dates are already sold out.  For more travel news and features, be sure to follow Adventures by Daddy on twitter and “like” our facebook page too.

About Dave Parfitt

Married, father of two girls, and living in the heart of the Finger Lakes. I'm a runner with a PhD in neuroscience and a passion for travel.