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The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Celebrates its 1st Birthday at Universal Studios Islands of Adventure

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Celebrates its 1st Birthday at Universal Studios Islands of Adventure

Harry Potter Hogwarts

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter celebrated its first birthday this week, having established an enthusiastic theme park following in its first year. Visitors to Universal's Islands of Adventure theme park can pass through the towering Hogwarts castle gates and explore the familiar passageways, classrooms and corridors. The rides including Dragon Challenge, Flight of the Hippogriff, and Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, a state-of-the-art attraction that brings the magic, characters, and stories of Harry Potter to life in ways never before imagined.

Wizarding World of Harry Potter

Of course a visit is not complete without a trip to the shops of Hogsmeade to sample fare from the Wizarding world’s best-known establishments, including the Three Broomstick and the Hog’s Head. Visitors can go inside Hogwarts castle, swig two kinds of Butterbeer and buy magic wands and other Wizarding wonders. I am sure that when we visit with our daughter we will also be stopping by Dervish and Banges to buy all of the Quidditch paraphernalia and I feel sure a Hogwarts school uniform and robe is high up on the wish list. I also have it on good authority that a trip to Zonko’s Joke shop is not to be missed.

Inside Hogwarts with animated "paintings"

There is no disputing the phenomenal popularity of Harry Potter and its fans have helped make Islands of Adventure the fastest-growing theme park in the world last year and indeed having not visited the park on our last few visits to Orlando, it is without question the reason that Universal Islands of Adventure is once again on my families list of top places to visit on our next trip. Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey has also been voted the best theme park ride in America by readers of the Theme Park Insider. My family are very excited to ride the attraction to see if we agree with this accolade.

Wizarding World of Harry Potter opening ceremony

Having spoken to fans who have visited the attraction it is clear that much as they have loved the experience they would be keen to see expansion of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter to include attractions that encompass events in other Harry Potter books. There is a much rumoured, but unconfirmed, roller coaster project based on Grigotts bank.

Other popular ideas for additions to the park are attractions based on the Shrieking Shack, Diagon Alley, the Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes joke shop, a Chamber of Secrets restaurant and a Quidditch experience. We will all have to wait and see how Universal chooses to capitalise on the huge popularity of Harry love The Wizarding World of Harry Potter but there is no doubt that they have been left wanting more and I am sure that Universal will have something up the sleeve of its Griffindor Robe

Flight of the Hippogriff ride
Aerial view of Wizarding World of Harry Potter


I will blog again after our next visit to Orlando to update you with our experiences and opinions of the Wizarding World Of Harry Potter attractions.

The final Potter film. "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2” premieres on 7th July before going on general release on 15th July. I will definitely be booking our tickets.