Harry Potter is an iconic part of British culture, and luckily for you if you’re a fan visiting London, there are so many great hotspots around the city where you can either see some of the locations where the films were shot, or you can have a true Harry Potter experience with various attractions around London. So, when planning your trip, look no further than these landmarks to help you get a good look around London and also to immerse yourself in the world of Harry Potter! They are all easily accessible with London transport too, which is an added bonus. Even if you aren’t a Harry Potter fan, we know you won’t be disappointed and you are likely to fall in love with the franchise!
Kings Cross Station
The first Harry Potter sight seeing hotspot is undeniably one of the most iconic; it’s Platform 9 ¾! We all know this is where all of the wizards go to get to Hogwarts, and you can go to see it for yourself. The magical entrance to Hogwarts also has a great souvenir shop, so you can pick up some keepsakes from your trip to take home with you. Just head to platforms 9 and 10 and you’ll find the secret entrance. Perhaps don’t try running into the wall though, just take a photo…
Next up we have Leadenhall Market, which was used in two different Harry Potter Films, as it stood in for Diagon Alley in The Philosophers Stone and then also as the Leaky Cauldren pub, which is actually an opticians in real life! Leadenhall Market was built in 1445 and is a breathtakingly beautiful airy market located right in the City of London. It features beautiful boutiques, shops and restaurants, so you can definitely spend an afternoon here! There are also lots of different events at Leadenhall Market, so make sure to have a look before you go to see if anything is on. Overall, even if you weren’t a Harry Potter fan, we’d definitely recommend a visit to Leadenhall Market.
Another great Harry Potter spot that you should go to see is Piccadilly Circus, which was used in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows I when Harry, Hermione and Ron were escaping the Death Eaters. You could recreate the scene yourself and then explore everything Piccadilly Circus has to offer, such as taking a look around the National Gallery and The British Museum, as well as Buckingham Palace, Big Ben and Westminster Abbey. This spot might not be most famous because of Harry Potter, but for the mega fans out there you will definitely be able to picture bits from the film!
You will likely be passing through Piccadilly Circus anyway, as it is a transport hub for the whole city. Start your day by parking at Care Park or getting the train into Piccadilly Circus and then enjoy this Harry Potter hotspot.
Harry Potter Walking Tour
This one is cheating a bit, as it is definitley more than one hotspot! If you want to see all of the biggest Harry Potter sight seeing spots around London, you’ve got to go on a Harry Potter walking tour. You can either go on a guided tour, and there are even some out there that are completely free, you just give a donation at the end if you want to! If you would prefer to go on your own, you can download a map of the tour and do it yourself. This is a great option if your budget is slightly lower and you want to make sure you’re getting a good amount of steps in! You’ll stop off at all of the places above, as well as so many more places, so you will definitely get the full Harry Potter experience if you are a fan. The guided tour uses the London Underground so make sure you have your 1 day travel card ready to go to avoid any delay.
For those of you who particularly love the first Harry Potter film, Sorcerer’s Stone, then head over to London Zoo in Regent’s Park to see the famous scene where the Dursley family go to the Zoo and Harry talks to the snake and gets trapped in the enclosure. Of course, you can also enjoy a great day out at the zoo which is home to over 600 species of animals, but you can also get some great photos in the reptile house! The enclosure that was used in the film is actually home to a black mamba, rather than a real talking snake, of course.
Enjoy a walk around Regent’s Park after exploring the zoo for some downtime before heading back into the hustle and bustle of the city.
Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio
Last but not least, we have perhaps the best Harry Potter hotspot; the Harry Potter Warner Bros Studio itself! The studio is in Watford, which is just an hour on the tube away to Watford Junction. Then, you’ll need to get a short 10 minute bus to the studios, so you can be there in just over an hour, making it a great date idea!
The studios are incredible, featuring real sets from the film, so many great props and special effects to feel like you are really in the film. It really is hard to describe just how magical it is being immersed in the set, seeing all the amazing costumes and breathtaking scenery. Even if you’re not a Harry Potter fan, it is definitely worth visiting. The entire tour takes around 3 hours to complete, but if you want to have a real in-depth look at everything, give it more like 4 to 6 hours so you don’t miss anything.
You must book tickets in advance in order to visit, so make sure to do this as far in advance as possible to avoid disappointment, as it gets booked up quickly! There are VIP experiences coming out soon, so also keep your eye out for those, although they do come along with quite a big price tag so be prepared.
Harry Potter is an iconic part of British culture and there are fans all over the world, so it is no surprise that experiencing some of the film franchise when visiting London is high on people’s priority list! Whether you go to one of these hotspots or you are going to try and see everything, you won’t be disappointed, and next time you watch the films, it will be even more special, and a good opportunity to pick up some London souvenirs. Give yourself plenty of time to get some great photos and create an album so you can remember all of your sight seeing!