Every Harry Potter superfan wants to go to Hogwarts. To get an owl. To be chosen by a wand. To sit under the sorting hat. Author J.K. Rowling’s book series is a genuinely iconic work of literature, and Warner Bros.’ feature film adaptations brought the world of Harry Potter to life in vivid fashion. But of course none of it’s real. You can’t go to Hogwarts. You’ll never get lost in the Forbidden Forest. And you’ll never fly on a broom.
But with the arrival of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort, suddenly Harry Potter fans were offered the next best thing. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade opened at Universal Orlando’s Islands of Adventure theme park in 2010, literally bringing Hogsmeade to the real world. The entire area is immersive, as guests walk under a “Welcome to Hogsmeade” sign, breeze past the Hogwarts Express, and scurry through the snow-covered town on their way towards the crown jewel: Hogwarts itself. And of course Hogsmeade was only the beginning, as Universal opened The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley in 2014 in the neighboring Universal Studios Florida theme park, and construction is already underway on a brand new Potter ride in Hogsmeade.
If you’re a Harry Potter fan and are thinking of making the trek to Orlando, you’ll be in heaven. But at first blush the Wizarding World may seem overwhelming, so we’ve put together a handy list of must-do’s and must-see’s while at Hogsmeade in Islands of Adventure so you can be sure your time was well spent. Behold, the best things to do at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade.
And for even more recommendations, check out our first timer’s guide to Universal Orlando.