Review: Warner Bros Studio Tour London – Harry Potter

Any other huge Harry Potter fans around?

I have had the Warner Brother’s studio tour in London on my wish list for a very long time. I’ve read all the Harry Potter books, I’ve watched the films and I was so excited to finally be going.

 

The boys have seen all of the films with me and are huge fans themselves. Si though has never watched a whole film and didn’t want to, so I did wonder how torturous it would be for him. I wondered for a little while and then still made him go anyway…

 

Harry Potter studio

 

When you arrive it’s all set out really well. In the car park, they show you to your car parking space so there’s no driving around for ages trying to find a space. If you booked online, then there are windows to pop to, to pick up your actual tickets. Once you get inside, they search any bags you have with you and use a handheld metal detection device on you.

 

This I found a bit odd as surely they’d be more worried about people taking things out of the studio than in, but I suppose someone with sabotage in mind and a bag full of paint or the like could cause serious damage. It also makes you feel safe in the knowledge that no one has a concealed weapon, because that’s my first thought at any tourist attraction… erm.

 

We arrived a bit early for our tour so we had a good nose around the main shop whilst we were there. There was also a cafe before you went in, but we’d had a big breakfast at the Premier Inn we were staying at, so we didn’t worry about going in there. The shop was huge and almost as exciting as the tour.

 

Anything Harry Potter you could think of and they seemed to sell it. This included wands, sweets that looked identical to the ones you saw on screen – minus the magic. There were Hogwarts uniforms, jumpers, the Pops bobble head things that my children have a slight obsession with and so much more.

 

Harry Potter Studio Tour Shop

 

There are items there of all different prices from the very reasonable rubbers and other small bits for children, to the “oh my word who on earth would pay that?!” prices. Like I said though, luckily there are quite a lot of more affordable things to steer your children towards. This isn’t the only shop either, as there are smaller ones inside the tour.

 

The queue was pretty huge when we joined it to wait for our tour time and we did have to queue for 40 minutes. Partly I think as we managed to go on the same day as bus loads of school children.

 

I liked that they made you queue and only let a certain amount of people in at once. This meant that although it was a busy time of day for the tours, it didn’t feel too busy or at all cramped.¬†When you first go through the doors in to the studio tour, they send you all in to a room for a mini talk and then into a room with the biggest screen I have ever seen in my life.

 

You watch a short film on there about the studios and then head in to the studio tour via the Hogwarts doors. Honestly I can not even describe how massively excited I was about going through THE doors. What was waiting for us on the other side of the doors was just magical to me and the boys.

 

Si mostly said what’s that for, who is that and looked confused.

 

Harry Potter doors and hall

 

Heading around the rest of the studio there was so much to see and even Si was impressed with the scale of work that had gone in to the props and settings for the films. Some things I was sure must have been done digitally, were there and full-scale.

 

Looking around it was just crazy to think of how much work had gone in to getting every little detail so perfect, although the tour does ruin quidditch a little for you be warned.

 

Harry Potter Studio Tour

 

I think my favourite bit was actually seeing how they did some of the special effects and how they made some really unbelievable creatures believable and just so real looking. The people behind the scenes of a lot of films are just genius in my eyes.

 

There was so much to see that if you are a Harry Potter fan, then you could happily spend all day there just looking around at everything. Even if you aren’t a Harry Potter fan, I can’t see how you could not be wowed.

 

There are several places as you are going around, where you can have a photo taken or a video made using a green screen, but we avoided these. This is one thing I’m not a fan of at attractions, as it usually costs a lot to have the photos or videos afterwards and can lead to disappointed children. Warner Studios however impressed me, by not keeping all areas as green screen pay photo opportunities.

 

With platform 9 3/4 they actually have a few of the trolleys going in to the wall set up, one is to have a professional photo taken. You can however take your own photos at the other ones and I was pleased with that. I may otherwise have succumbed to the paying for photos option.

 

Hogwarts Train and platform 9 and 3/4

 

There is another cafe area as you go around the studio by the way, luckily it is big as it was full of school children when we went, we did however find a table pretty easily. We skipped the butter beer as neither of the boys fancied it, but they did enjoy eating a chocolate frog from the shop and cookies from the cafe instead.

 

There are some things outside at Warner Bros Studio, and it was so weird seeing full-scale buildings and the night bus in real life.

 

Harry Potter Warner studios

 

My inner not so well hidden geeky side spent a lot of the day going around getting all squeaky about things. The last thing you see before you leave is this….

 

Hogwarts - Harry Potter

 

Hogwarts! I am now planning to re-read all of the Harry Potter books and watch the films again asap. For me the day really was pretty much magical and I do recommend going if you’re a Harry Potter fan. If you aren’t a Harry Potter fan then my inner geek just rolled her eyes at you.

 

Stevie 

 

*We were allowed to visit the Warner Brother’s Studio tour for the purpose of this post, but only as I emailed them and asked nicely. All thoughts, opinions and random geek speak are my own and honest as always*

 

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36 Comments

  1. Ellen Couch
    7 July 2016 / 8:51 pm

    Little sisters sooooo jealous lol

    • 7 July 2016 / 9:09 pm

      Ha bless them, but then I’m jealous of M’s trip abroad that’s coming up ;)

      Stevie x

  2. 8 July 2016 / 12:08 am

    When we go to London this is on my list to do!!!

  3. 8 July 2016 / 8:25 am

    Looks like you had a brilliant day! I went when I was heavily pregnant with my first and the queues are quite savage at times, especially when you queue to get into the ‘holding room’. But it’s amazing to see all the props and the model Hogwarts. #bigpinklink

  4. 8 July 2016 / 9:37 am

    I have to admit that I’m not a big Harry Potter fan, but even so this looks awesome! #PicknMix

  5. Julie C
    8 July 2016 / 10:14 am

    This looks awesome, we are currently reading the books to our boy at bedtime and he is loving them so we may plan a trip soon. I know he would adore this!

    (Just as an aside about having bag searched, at a recent visit to LEGOLAND our bag was searched the member of staff was checking we didn’t have any corkscrews with us as they would not be allowed!)

  6. 8 July 2016 / 10:45 am

    Fabulous photos! We loved it there too, such a magical place. I really like the photos of the boys on platform 9 3/4 ours didn’t come out very well.
    Nat.x

  7. 8 July 2016 / 11:30 am

    Oh this looks so brilliant!!! I am not even that into HP but I can see how awesome it must be regardless. I read the first couple when they came out but Spud has asked if he’s allowed to watch the films yet (he’s 7 and I thought the recent one’s were supposed to be a bit dark from what I’d heard – what would you say?). Good to hear there are some less expensive options and free photo ops too – I’m always the Mum saying ‘NO! It’s too expensive!!”. Looks like you had a fab day out – enjoy re-reading and watching the films :) #picknmix

  8. 8 July 2016 / 11:40 am

    Hi Stevie. We are massive Harry Potter fans too. We went as a joint birthday treat 2 years ago (my daughter was 8 and I was 33 ha ha!). We loved it so much. The Hogwarts Express was not there then though and I am so desperate to go back again. All three kids are now big fans too. Think my hubby is the biggest.
    I’ve just been made redundant and I’m due my pay at the end of the month, think I may have to treat us. Sarah #PicknMix

  9. 8 July 2016 / 12:28 pm

    It’s quite strange because I haven’t read any of the books or seen any of the films yet the tour has been on my Wishlist for a while! It is quite local to me, would you recommend reading the books first?

  10. 8 July 2016 / 1:25 pm

    This looks fab Stevie, and makes me really want to go there. I love Harry Potter, and really enjoyed reading all the books – it makes me want to read another book and watch the films again. The closest I’ve got to any Harry Potter is seeing the Platform 3/4 at Kings Cross Station. Claire x #PickNMix

  11. 8 July 2016 / 1:47 pm

    We went a few years back and I was equally excited! I’m such a huge fan – it was a magical day! #picknmix

  12. 8 July 2016 / 3:36 pm

    My husband loves HP, I had watched the first film only when the tour first opened. We went when I was 8 1/2 months pregnant with Alice! Andy loved it and I did really enjoy it to, I loved walking up the street and looking in all the shops. But Hogwarts was Amazing!!! Andy then made me watch the other films when I was in labour!!!!! Xx

  13. 8 July 2016 / 6:25 pm

    We have promised our daughter that we will take her for the tour over the Summer Holidays. I have held back to be honest as sometimes these tours can be a bit of a letdown, but looking at your pics etc I have to admit it looks great. Better go and book those tickets. #picknmix

  14. 8 July 2016 / 8:18 pm

    I’ve still never watched a Harry Potter or read a single book, and I have no inclination to! That said, this does look fantastic and my kids are all Harry Potter fans!! Maybe one day I’ll send my husband and the kids!! #picknmix

  15. 8 July 2016 / 8:57 pm

    This looks like an amazing day out, my teen is a huge Harry Potter fan so I know she would love to visit here xx

  16. 8 July 2016 / 9:01 pm

    Ooooo this is so magical, my kids would love to visit here #picknmix

  17. 8 July 2016 / 9:43 pm

    Oh my goodness I want a wand! Think I’d be happy to go just to the shop alone, it looks amazing. I have started a tradition of trying to watch the harry potter series over Christmas – seem to manage it every other year (last year being the acception due to having a six week old baby!) I’ve often wondered if this would be any good to visit or a bit of style over substance – I think now I’ve read this we will definitely have to go when my daughter is old enough. #picknmix

  18. 9 July 2016 / 1:12 pm

    Looks like you had a fab day! #picknmix

  19. 9 July 2016 / 9:08 pm

    I soooo want to go here! My husband is not the biggest Harry Potter fan and if would be totally lost on my kids. I’m thinking of recruiting my mum to go with me. I totally have an inner geek too!

  20. 10 July 2016 / 9:31 am

    I absolutely love Harry Potter and would love to go…I’m saving it up for when my little girl is older! Great pictures, looks like a fab day. Thanks for hosting #picknmix

  21. 10 July 2016 / 12:20 pm

    This has also been on our Wish List!! Cannot wait to go! We visited Diagonal Alley at Universal in Florida and from your description it sounds that the same level of detail has been reproduced here too. We loved our Butter Beers so will defo be having another!!! Great review thanks! #picknmix

  22. 10 July 2016 / 5:41 pm

    I can feel your rolling eyes Stevie as I have never read a book nor watched a single film (I know, I know). However I would still go as the kids and my husband love Harry Potter. We have been to the Harry Potter attraction in Florida, and despite me not being a fan I still enjoyed it. Great review and I must admit it does look like an incredible attraction x

  23. 10 July 2016 / 8:05 pm

    It’s so much fun isn’t it? We went for my birthday a couple of years ago! Definitely makes you feel like a child! #picknmix

  24. 10 July 2016 / 9:08 pm

    Looks like you had an awesome time. I have to admit I have never been into Harry Potter but am really wanting to now! #picknmix xx

  25. 10 July 2016 / 9:20 pm

    Oh wow, just wow! I loooove Harry Potter, read all the books and watched all the films, and would love to visit the studios. I can’t wait to get the girls reading the books. #PicknMix

  26. 13 July 2016 / 10:29 am

    I love Harry Potter so much, even more than my kids so Its a defo on my list! I too will insist that all the family comes with me:) Looks like there is loads to do and I really like the sound of the service about the car parking space and popping up to get the tickets. Fab!

    mainy
    myrealfairy
    #PicknMix

  27. 13 July 2016 / 11:36 am

    Sooo glad you enjoyed it – it was so much fun when we went too but next time I want to go minus the boys so I can properly geek out over it all! :-) #PickNMix

  28. 14 July 2016 / 11:53 am

    I have heard great things about this studio tour…my friend (who is 39), cried when she saw some of the sets. This tour is a must for Harry Potter fans. #PicknMix

  29. 14 July 2016 / 1:24 pm

    I definitely want to take our two here at some stage – I think they’re a bit young at the moment though #picknmix

  30. 14 July 2016 / 10:54 pm

    We loved going there. I really want to go back, there is so much to see and I loved the butterbeer too x

  31. 15 July 2016 / 12:18 am

    I’m obsessed with Harry Potter & really want to go here! I’d particularly like to do the Hogwarts in the Snow tour at Christmas time! #PicknMix

  32. 26 February 2017 / 1:11 am

    Seems like you had so much fun, Stephanie! Warner studio tours sound very interesting, I would add this to my bucket list!

  33. Anonymous
    2 December 2018 / 4:25 pm

    I’ m a HP fan and I’ m going there next year. Do the shops have any posters?
    Sorry for my english:-)

    • 2 December 2018 / 6:43 pm

      It was quite a while ago that we went, but I am pretty sure they did when we were there! :)