Thursday, October 23, 2014

Vacationing at Hogwarts & Hogsmeade

Today I thought I'd share some pictures from our vacation to Universal Studios in Florida. While we were there, I was excited to explore the section of the park that was styled like the town of Hogsmeade from the Harry Potter series! Within this section of the park sits the super-fun Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride, hidden away inside Hogwarts.

When entering Hogsmeade, wizards are reminded to respect the Ministry of Magic's spell-casting guidelines while inside the town.

Our first stop was Honeydukes! The whole shop was decked from floor to ceiling in candies from the series, such as chocolate frogs and Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans. The aisles were so absolutely packed with people that it was impossible to stop for a picture inside without disrupting the flow of traffic.

The Post Office was one of the many storefronts that were for display only, as well as Zonko's Joke Shop, which I was especially disappointed to discover.

This is a shot of Hogwarts from within the Herbalism Greenhouse! The greenhouse was one of the many rooms to walk through while in line for the Harry Potter ride that was decorated with all kinds of movie props, even a series of mandrake planters (which I initially took photos of, but ended up losing that disposable camera).

Inside Hogwarts, it's very dark, (we were in a castle, after all) but I still managed to snap this picture of the hourglasses that measure the house points! Looks like Gryffindor won again this year!

Outside Hogwarts are twin coasters that represent two of the dragons the heroes battled during the Triwizard Tournament. The line for this ride is decorated with banners for each of the champions, and even cuts through the tent that they prepared in prior to the tournament.

I neglected to photograph Cedric's banner on purpose because he sucks.

Another prop was a life-sized replica of Arthur Weasley's flying Ford Anglia!

Unfortunately our visit was before the Diagon Alley portion of the park was opened, so I hope I get to come back and explore the rest soon! Are you a Harry Potter fan? What part of the Wizarding World would you like to see?

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