A little bit of background to this - in 2010 The Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened in the Islands of Adventure theme park, adjacent to Universal Studios, with the amazing Hogwarts castle, the simulator and headliner ride Harry Potter and The Forbidden Journey, Flight of the Hippograff ride for the young ones and the Dragon Challenge rollercoaster.
The amazing Hogwarts castleWe went in 2010 and my favourite part was Hogwarts castle. The atmosphere and attention to detail was amazing. It was as if they had taken a real castle and transported it to the land of sunshine and fun. As you walk through the castle paintings come to life, and in a stroke of genius snow falls on you as enter the main hall. I actually let out an audible gasp.
The snow on the rooftops adds an authentic touch
The headliner ride here, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey has you soaring on broomsticks, encountering fire breathing dragons and the evil Voldermort whilst being totally immersed in the experience from start to finish.
So it is with excitement that I have been following the Diagon Alley Expansion before my return trip to Universal Studios later this year.
The new Diagon Alley experience has you transported to London and Harry Potter fans will enjoy Knockturn Alley and the joke shop Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes. The main restaurant will be The Leaky Cauldron, serving classic British pub food such as ploughman's lunch, pies and toad in the hole and you can wash it all down with Butterbeer and Gillywater.
|The Hogwarts Express (Photo credit: Scott Smith (SRisonS))|
One of the main attractions is Hogwarts Express, a train ride that will take you between the two main parks. Authentically created with even a replica of King's Cross Station, the windows of the train apparently show scenes from the UK, and don't forget to watch out for the Forbidden Forest and the Wealseys on their broomsticks!
The headliner ride is Harry Potter And The Escape from Gringotts. With some clever animatronics as you walk through the Gringotts bank the goblins come to life, and you take a lift down to the vaults. You then get onto a car for the ride experience. The combination of cutting edge technology, 3d effects and a part rollercoaster ride will surely be another of Universal Studios triumphs.
Diagon Alley officially opens on 8th of July this year, but Universtal Studios Orlando have a week of webcasts with previews of what to expect. I can't wait to go!
Tell me have you been to Universal Studios or visited the Wizarding World of Harry Potter? Are you a Harry Potter fan?