I have been a huge Harry Potter fan from the release of the first book. Since then I have been to the cinema to watch each of the eight films and I was one of those people who queued up at midnight when a new book was released. The Warner Brothers Studio Tour was obviously on my must do list. I was ecstatic when I was asked to review the Hogwarts In The Snow tour on the blog.
Admittedly, I was concerned about how Adam would cope with the tour. Sensory Processing Disorder can make days out tricky. It was quite a long drive for us to get to Watford in London and up until a few days before the tour Adam had never heard of Harry Potter. We asked Nana and Grandad to come with us to help. However, once Adam had watched half of the first film I knew he would be captivated.
We visited The Warner Brothers Studio on January 14th – sadly we were there the day it was announced that Alan Rickman, who played Professor Snape, had died from cancer. We attended the “Hogwarts In The Snow” special event that ran from November to the end of January. The difference between the special event and a usual tour at any other time of year was that the sets were decorated for festive scenes. We also got to see how filmmakers created fire, snow and ice.
When you book tickets you are allocated a set time to start your tour. The process is well run and we didn’t have to wait long. Immediately, Adam fell in love with the ginormous Christmas tree in the main foyer as well as the Flying Ford Anglia.
After watching a short introduction film, we were led into the Great Hall. This was decorated for a grand feast. We got to hear about how the food was created as well as some insider information on the costumes.
From then on we were able to go around the tour at our own leisure. We got to experience iconic props, costumes and sets from across the Harry Potter series. It is hard to get across the attention to detail that went into each of the films. There was plenty to keep Adam entertained. Highlights for him included the huge clock pendulum, Weasley’s Burrow with the moving objects and Dumbledore’s room.
When researching the tour, I knew Adam would enjoy the Hogwarts Express. It opened in March 2015 and has the original Hogwarts Express steam engine, along with a recreation of Platform 9 3/4. Adam was simply enthralled. He spent ages at the edge of the platform waving to the steam engine expecting it to drive off. He then spent countless times going on the train to see the different carriages.
We never thought we would get Adam away from Platform 9 3/4. The promise of a Butterbeer icecream finally persuaded him. I got to enjoy a Butterbeer drink too and purchased the souvenir tankard.
Whilst enjoying our lunch break, we had great views of the Knight Bus, Privet Drive and Hagrid’s motorbike. We were treated to a snow storm too, which added to the effect of the tour.
After walking down Diagon Alley, we got to experience my own personal highlight of the tour – seeing the Hogwarts Castle in the snow. When I had seen the Hogwarts castle on pictures I had expected it to be on a large table which you walked around. I hadn’t expected the castle to take up an entire room and a huge room at that! The 1:24 scale model is nearly 50 feet in diameter. The snow effect made the castle even more impressive. Even Adam stood still to take in the castle.
In total we spent six hours on the Warner Brothers Studio Tour and still could have stayed longer. Adam thoroughly enjoyed the day and has talked non stop about the Hogwarts Express, the Knight Bus and the Hogwarts Castle. It was truly a wonderful experience.
Disclaimer: We were given four tickets to attend the Warner Brothers Harry Potter Tour: Hogwarts In The Snow to review. All thoughts and opinions are our own.
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