Meeting UK: The Day My Dreams Came True Part 2

Days since my last post: 3

And onwards with more Harry Potter stories! So as I've mentioned, the studio tour was huge and while I first thought the recommendation to stay in there for 3 hours was crazy, I can now say that it's not enough. At all.

Finally in a Hufflepuff robe. I feel proud. 

There was much to do in the studio, with tons of interactive stuff so it wasn't just a "walk around and take pictures" kind of place. It was an actual studio that brings you onto how they filmed it, and how you can experience filming it. This freaking place was magical.

So magical, I got to be a witch.

And as remarkable as it was to be in the studio, I thought it was even more remarkable that they had never forgotten important details to the entire franchise. This included adding on "magical" touches so you get to see some items "moving" on its own.

Like showing us The Burrow.

From the dining table.

Magically knitting a scarf.

Did you think this was it? No. I seriously thought there was no more to see and just headed towards what felt like the exit but I was mind boggled, looking at even MORE items on display. The tour felt like it was never going to end and I was so freaking happy, I think I looked like a crazy woman from an Asian country who has never seen what a studio tour looked like. And I'm not even kidding.

Let's play guess the suitcases! 

This shot, I've finally done it. *Wipes tears away*

As if it wasn't impressive enough for them to include all these details, they actually have staffs who are around and ready to help you snap photos! What kind of a studio tour does that? Oh right, I was in a magical land. 

All aboard!

This was the ORIGINAL train that they used in the movies,  preserved in the studio!

Okay, bye.

Several empty carriages were also placed on the side for those of you who wants to try "riding" the Hogwarts Express, and it was all very interactive because they actually tell you what to do and make different expressions for different occasions so your pictures all turn out well...different.

And finally! 

Butterbeer!!! 

Always wanted to try Butterbeer from The Three Broomsticks? Okay, go for the cafe that stands in between the two studios. It is only sold in this cafe, and while it was (disappointingly) not called The Three Broomsticks, their Butterbeer was still a hit. I believe I paid £5.95 for the tankard in the first picture and then another £2.95 for the cup in my selfies. I gave the empty cup to a friend of mine back in Malaysia, and her eyes lit up brighter than I could ever imagine. Happiness is priceless.

 Frothy, salty, and sweet.

I really can't describe the taste of the Butterbeer as much, but it's just got that mix between being salty and sweet. It's oddly peculiar but seriously damn satisfying, even when the weather outside is cold and the drink colder. I did think the cream on top was a bit cloying though, so if you could just whip those off, it'll be pretty good. Think of it as a root beer fusioned with cream soda. Or something like that just to fuel your imagination.


Outside of 4, Privet Drive.

"Yeah, yeah, take it away, Ernie! It's going to be a bumpy ride!" 

On the Hogwarts Bridge. 

If you'd notice, I brought my companion out for pictures through these scenes because he was otherwise not very noticeable in the studio. The lighting felt perfect outside, without it being too sunny but it was cold. Like seriously cold. I also liked how they added in fun facts for every piece in the studio, like how the Hogwarts Bridge was never mentioned in the books but director Alfonso Cuaron made one so the scene of which Harry and Hermoine used the Time Turner in "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" felt more exciting. Again, details! 

Recognize this bike?

Diagon Alley! 

Imagine my excitement when I knew there was a different part to the studio, and it really wasn't the end even if you walked past the second set of doors oh my! What you'd expect to see is a big set up of Diagon Alley, complete with Gringotts, Ollivanders and other places such as Flourish and Blotts, among shops known in the books and movies. 

 
Bonus, okay? They even had a freaking Buckbeak! 

They also had little parts explaining how some of the CGI worked, and how they tirelessly created costumes for characters like Hagrid, making him appear huge. Oh and remember the troll from "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone"? Yes, he's there too.

Before the shoots.

And everything is made of paper and boards.

 Painstakingly created in paper and boards. Including the insides!

I was in complete awe at this rate, because they also showed us things like how to created some scenes and how they had to plan them very carefully, including knowing how an interior of a place would look like. There's so much more than what I'm showing you here, so if you ever had the chance, you just have to be there. Because the ending...

Put me in tears. Literally. I cried.

It was amazing. I didn't think it would end this way, but the sight of the entire Hogwarts Castle by the end of the tour made everything felt so worth it, and just the perfect wrap up to the experience. I had never felt more content, and it just gave me a buzz all day long.

 And I would never, ever, EVER forget it.

Even as I was leaving. 

I guess I ended up taking a little more than 5 hours, including tons of picture taking, quick bites at the cafe, and a whole lot of girly squeals as I looked at everything that my brain could process. The initial recommendation of 3 hours by the staffs was nothing! You will end up however at the official merchandise store, where you will be compelled to spend everything you have just to buy it all. I confess, I must have spent close to £100 in the store itself, but they were mostly from my friend who went crazy as I continuously sent her pictures on WhatsApp. The evil deed was done, and soon a fool and her money had parted.

And yes, my tour ended there. The overall experience is really to die for, and I wouldn't exchange a single moment for it. I seriously recommend every Harry Potter fan to make this a priority in life, to just book your flight and fly over to see the real Warner Bros. Studio where the magic is just all brought to life. Even if it costs you your liver. It's worth it.

Getting here: The Warner Bros. Studio Tour is located at Leavesden, a tiny town that's located a little north from London. You can get here by jumping on the London Overground or National Rail to Watford Junction, then looking out for the bus that's been wrapped with everything Harry Potter! The bus will cost you about £1.50 but it's a double trip so you pay once to go, keep your ticket, and they'll send you back to the Watford Junction station later on.

 It's not the Knight bus, but it will have to do.

Oh and as if the studio tour wasn't enough for me, I had to make that one special trip down to the original King's Cross station where the magic began.

It's the real Platform 9 and 3/4 at the King's Cross Station!

Hufflepuff shall leave now.

Outside the Harry Potter shop. 

They've got really friendly staff who are ready to take pictures for you at the King's Cross station too, and then you can opt to buy a print out at the Harry Potter shop, where your money and you will part even more. While I kept my wallet safe, my mind had truly gotten boggled by the entire trip. And I think it'll be something I will remember for the rest of my life. This time, it's mischief managed for real.

Share:

0 comments