In December 2011, my family and I visited the Wizarding World of Harry Potter during a Christmas trip to Florida. My dad as well as my sister and I are HUGE Harry Potter fans, so we were beyond excited to see this amazing new attraction. Tickets may seem a bit pricey, but if you love Harry Potter like we do, it is worth it.
I was honestly pretty worried that it wouldn’t live up to my very high expectations, but I am happy to say that it exceeded almost all of them!
In honour of the opening of Diagon Alley and the Hogwarts Express, here are my highlights and disappointments from the original Wizarding World of Harry Potter:
This is embarrassing, but I am such a diehard fan that I teared up as soon as I walked into Hogsmeade. Seeing the wizarding village “in real life” is an indescribable experience!
2. The Forbidden Journey
BEST PART OF THE DAY. The Forbidden Journey ride was mindblowing, and even better the second time we went on. I still don’t understand how it works, but it must be by magic!
It’s so much fun to be able to buy ‘real’ wizarding gear! Including all the snacks I bought at Honeydukes, I bought a replica of Hermione’s wand (we didn’t take the tour of Ollivanders) and the Ravenclaw shirt I’m wearing in this picture.
4. Wait Times
We were surprised it wasn’t busier when we were there! We went on the Forbidden Journey as soon as we got there to avoid a long wait, but it wouldn’t even have mattered. Of course, it is a theme park so there were crowds, but nothing too bad.
1. Not going on Dragon Challenge
I still regret not going on the Dragon Challenge ride, but I hadn’t yet conquered my fear of upside down roller coasters! My dad and sister went on and absolutely loved it, and I’m kicking myself for skipping out! Next time;)
As expected, souvenirs from the Wizarding World of Harry Potter are exorbitantly overpriced. You have to pick and choose what’s worth your budget, so choose wisely! I don’t regret any of my purchases.
I was very excited to try Butterbeer, and I was quite disappointed! I drank the whole cup, but it wasn’t as good as I thought! The frozen variety was better than the normal option, but I feel like they could have made this better!
As you can see, most of my ‘disappointments’ barely even count. I hope to visit Diagon Alley and take the Hogwarts Express sometime soon, but for now these memories are enough to tide me over!
**Note: My dad took all of these pictures! Thanks dad!