Harry Potter Studio Tour Review: Everything You Need to Know for a Magical Visit

This Harry Potter Studio Tour review will cover everything you need to know to plan a visit to the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London: The Making of Harry Potter.

If you are a Harry Potter fan planning a London itinerary you may want to include a visit to Warner Brothers Studio Tour London: The Making of Harry Potter.

Although it is a bit outside the city, it may be worth it to take the journey to experience the tour.

We visited during our 12 day Europe itinerary and we had mixed feelings on it. Let’s dive into the details with my Harry Potter Studio Tour review.

entrance to making of harry potter
Outside Entrance to The Making of Harry Potter

Overview of Harry Potter Studio Tour London

The Warner Bros. Studio Tour London: The Making of Harry Potter is where the movie was made. The props and backlots are authentic to the films.

It is a unique place to visit being that the cast and production crew spent 10+ years making Harry Potter there. Now you get to see these items up close and experience the movies like never before.

Location & How to Get There

Harry Potter Studio Tour London is not actually in London. It is outside the city and the nearest train station is Watford Junction.

There are shuttle buses, that are included with your ticket admission, at the station to transport you to the Studio.

Visitors will want to take the London Euston train to Watford Station (around 20 minutes) and then the 15 minute bus ride to the studio.

Guests can also drive themselves to the studio tour lot. Below is a map but travel time is going to depend on where your starting point is.

london to studio map
As you can see there are different routes to get to Warner Bros. Studio London

Ticket Cost & Hours

Tickets for the Harry Potter Studio Tour London start at $68.00 USD. The tickets are timed based and you will need to make reservations early.

There are also options to book a Studio tour and bus transfer from London, this may be a better option for you to not have to worry about taking the London tube.

Tip for Tickets: Book your date as soon as you can. You also want to book the earliest time if you can get there. Less crowds make it much easier to tour. (More on that later in my review.)

What to Bring

You don’t need to bring much to the tour. There are indoor and outdoor areas so dress for the weather.

Wear comfortable shoes. The tour takes at least 2 hours to explore. Time will depend on how long you take for each area, dining, and crowd levels. We visited for around 3 hours.

You may want to bring a portable charger if you plan on taking a lot of video and photos. Guests are also allowed to bring their own food and drinks to be consumed at specified spots along the tour.

Where to Stay

If you are not staying in London you may want to book a hotel nearby. The Warner Bros. Studio Tour offers hotel and ticket packages.

bus from watford station to harry potter studios tour
You can’t miss the bus to take you to the Studio Tour.

The Tour Experience

The tour has you visiting different rooms and areas about parts of the film. The map below gives you an idea of what to expect.

Each area has a specific theme to it and you can spend as little or as much time as you would like.

harry potter studio tour map
Map of the Harry Potter Studio Tour London

The Great Hall

Guests start at the Tour Entrance that has movie posters, scenes from the movie, and scripts along the wall.

They then watch a short film followed by guides opening the doors to The Great Hall to begin your self-guided tour.

The Great Hall has costumes from the film as well as the sorting hat. There are lots of opportunities to take pictures.

great hall entrance
The entrance to the self-guided Harry Potter Studio Tour.

Interior Sets

After guests leave the Great Hall you will go to an interior sets room that has so much to see.

We saw The Mirror of Erised, the Chamber of Secrets door, costumes from the film, and a few interactive elements.

This area of the tour is very crowded and vast. It does not follow a straight path so be sure to take your time to see everything you want to see.

props at the making of harry potter studio tour london
Props in the Interior Set room.

The Forbidden Forest

Next up is the Forbidden Forest which is a dark open path. There are spider props and it may be a little scary for young children.

It is easy to get through and most kids will be fine.

forbidden forest
Walk through of the Forbidden Forest

Platform 9 3/4

Next up on the tour is the Hogwarts Express. There was a long line to get on this, so we skipped it, but we did get our picture taken going through the Platform.

We liked this area but felt it was comparable to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando, so we didn’t mind skipping things.

If you have never been to Universal’s Harry Potter areas this is really cool and you should take the time to explore more than we did.

platform 9 at harry potter
Perfect photo-op for the family.

Backlot Cafe

The Backlot Cafe is the half-way point of the studio tour. It has a small counter service food option.

They offer breakfast and lunch options as well as Butterbeer. Choices include hamburgers, hot dogs, salads, and fries. Menu can be found here.

The food is fine. It is not good or bad. I enjoy the Butterbeer and the souvenir mug guests can keep.

The lines for food were ridiculous. I do not know if that was specific to our visit or if it is always long at lunchtime. It took at least 20 minutes to order and get food. The line moved slow.

There was plenty of seating in the cafe and it was nice to enjoy our lunch without feeling rushed. We also had a place to refill our water bottles and use the restrooms.

food court at the making of harry potter london
Basic Burger and fries.

The Backlot

The Backlot is next and I think this is where my favorite areas of the tour started. The first half if props and things but these areas were a bit immersive.

The Knight Bus, Harry’s House and the Greenhouse can all be found in this outdoor space. The kids, and I all enjoyed checking on the baby Mandrakes, yes they do scream!

Gringotts Bank

After walking through the special effects area guests will walk through a life-like Gringotts Bank, with working Goblins. This area is very accurate to the movies, be sure to take pictures!

gringotts at making of harry potter london
Gringotts Bank

The Vaults

After you walk through the bank you will enter the vaults and have opportunity to take photos with treasures. Then you will come close to a dragon as you exit the area.

There is a short little dragon projection show that is about 30 seconds long and runs continuously. If it is crowded when you enter wait for the next round to start and get a front row spot.

dragon vault
The Dragon Vault is worth checking out.

Diagon Alley

Diagon Alley is the last large room you will walk through and it does look exactly like Diagon Alley from the movies.

diagon alley at london harry potter studios
There are no shops to enter in this area but it does feel as if you stepped inside the Harry Potter movie.

Model Room

The model room is the last area to walk around and guests walk the path around a large model of Hogwarts. This gives you a birds-eye view of the scope of the castle.

mini hogawarts castle at making of harry potter studios tour london
Hogwarts model.

Shops and Exit

Every attraction ends in the gift shop and The Making of Harry Potter is no different. You can pick up wands and other Harry Potter themed souvenirs after your visit.

Once finished with your tour make your way back to the bus stop. This will take you to the train station to start your journey home.

Is Harry Potter Studio Tour Worth It?

It is always difficult to tell someone if something is worth it for them but what would a review of Harry Potter Studio Tour London be without my personal opinion.

We were not blown away by it. It was really cool and fun to see some of the exhibits but it felt similar to what we have seen at Universal.

I will say we visited on a really busy day. We didn’t enter the tour until around 2:00pm and I think that was a big mistake.

The crowds were big and it made it difficult to spend time to see everything without feeling rushed.

If you visit book a morning time. On our visit morning times were sold out by the time I got to purchasing admission.

Harry Potter fans do not want to miss this! If you are not a Harry Potter fan it might not be worth the time to travel outside London to see this.

Overall I am glad we went. There were areas we really enjoyed, like the Backlot area. I think one visit is enough for us but I am glad we included it on our trip to London.

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