A Harry Potter’s fan guide to London

Love Harry Potter? Planning a getaway to London? Here’s our Harry Potter fan guide to London including the many iconic buildings and places featured in the movies. So what are you waiting for, get on your broomstick and explore.

1. Warner Bros. Studio Tour  – The Making of Harry Potter, Watford

Perhaps the best place to start is by experiencing, the magic behind the making of the film. The Making of Harry Potter, is a site of pilgrimage for Harry Potter fans all over the UK. Explore iconic props and costumes with the opportunity to experience original sets, animatronic creatures and breathtaking special effects. A great day trip from London, this thrilling experience has been voted 5/5 on TripAdvisor by visitors.

Travel: Regular services from London Marylebone to Watford station
Stay: Stay in our Watford or London Marylebone hotel

The Making of Harry Potter

2. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child , Palace Theatre

Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany; Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a new play (the eighth story in the Harry Potter series) and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. Composed of two parts, that are intended to be seen in order on the same day or 2 consecutive evenings, this magical play has won five star reviews from critics. Tickets are on sale now for a limited period for performances up until April 2018. Lots of patience and a bit of luck are required if you want to get your hand on a ticket.

Travel: Covent Garden tube
Stay: Stay in our London Covent Garden hotel


3. Watch all Harry Potter films back-to-back, Prince Charles Theatre

Need an excuse to partake in a Harry Potter binge film-watching session? If you feel like reacquainting yourself with Harry’s world, then this April you can watch all 8 Harry Potter films back-to-back. Tickets cost £32.50 (£30 if you’re a member). Starts Sunday, 30th April at 08:30 pm and is scheduled to run right the way through to 5.25pm on Monday 1st May. Warning: Lots of coffee required.

Travel: Piccadilly Circus or Leicester Square tube
Stay: Stay in our London Covent Garden hotel

4. Kings Cross station

Kings Cross station is where students of Hogwarts board the Hogwarts Express on Platform 9 ¾. Harry Potter and his friends access the platform by walking through a brick wall between platforms 9 and 10. In the real world, the platforms are separated by tracks, but look out for the sign that says “Platform 9¾ “ on the wall of the station concourse and strike a pose with the embedded trolley.

Travel: King Cross St Pancras tube station
Stay: Stay in our Kings Cross Central hotel


5. Millennium Bridge

The Millennium Bridge is a 330 metre steel bridge linking the City of London at St. Paul’s Cathedral with the Tate Modern Gallery at Bankside. The bridge was annihilated following an attack by Death Eaters in the film adaption of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Don’t fear, a walk across the bridge is completely safe in the Muggle World and is one of the top free things to do in London .

Travel: Southwark or Temple Tube stations
Stay: Stay in our London Central Bank hotel


6. London City Hall

Located in Southwark, on the south bank of the River Thames, London City Hall is the HQ of the Greater London Authority, the Mayor of London and London Assembly. It appears in Harry Potter and the Half-blood Prince when workers witness the attack on the Millennium Bridge. And even for non-fans of the movies, the unusual spherical shape of the building is worth seeing.

Travel: London Bridge station
Stay: Stay in our London Central Tower Bridge hotel


7. Great Scotland Yard

On the corner of Scotland Place and Great Scotland Yard, Harry and Ron enter a phone box to descend into the Ministry of Magic in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. While you can go and view where this “happened”, you won’t find the phone box used in the film. It was specially brought and taken away once filming was over.

Travel: Embankment Tube stations
Stay: London Waterloo hotel

8 Leadenhall Market

This beautiful Victorian market, was used as “Diagon Alley” in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. The entrance to the wizard’s pub called the Leaky Cauldron, is an optician in real life and situated in Bull’s Head Passage in Leadenhall Market.

Travel: Bank station
Stay: London Central Bank hotel


9. Australia House

The scenes featuring Gringotts Wizarding Bank were filmed at Australia House (home to the Australian High Commission). Filming took place inside the Grade II listed building, which is not normally open to the public. To catch a glimpse of the grand interior, take a quick peep through the doors and look out for the magnificent crystal chandelier which features prominently in the films.

Travel: Temple or Covent Garden stations
Stay: London Central Bank hotel


© Richard Rogerson

10. Claremont Square

No 12 Grimmauld Place in Islington is the Order of the Phoenix’s HQ and the house of Harry’s godfather Sirius Black. The row of houses on Claremont Square appeared in the Order of the Phoenix and Deathly Hallows Part 1.

© Copyright Andy F and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

© Copyright Andy F and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Travel: Angel tube station
Stay: London Central Kings Cross

Fans in the know, will tell you there are many more places to visit in London with some kind of Harry Potter connection.  You can visit the Reptile House at the London Zoo (the scene from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone where a burmese python speaks to Harry Potter) or the iconic Tower Bridge which Harry flies over on his broomstick in the Order of the Phoenix.

With all of these, plus many more, you can be rest assured that when planning a “magical” Harry Potter trip to London, you’re spoilt for choice.