Harry Potter Tours and Experiences in London

London is the city of Harry Potter and throughout the city you will find references and locations of the saga. I tell you about the different tours about the young wizard that you can do in the British capital.

Vicky Del Moral

Vicky Del Moral

10 min read

Harry Potter Tours and Experiences in London

Hogwarts Express Train | © Martin Pettitt

For many of us, London is not only Big Ben, Nothing Hill or Hyde Park; for many, London is Diagon Alley, Platform 9 and ¾, Gringotts and the Leaky Cauldron. Welcome to Hogwarts (or almost...).

One of the activities that I recommend you to do in London if you are a fan of the Harry Potter saga, is to hire a tour of the locations where the movies were filmed. With a specialized guide, you can visit the most important points of the city that gave life to the eight stories of this famous wizard, such as Trafalgar Square, Covent Garden or Soho.

The most economical option

Harry Potter Tour in London

Tour of Harry Potter locations in the city of London.

As you stroll through the streets of London, an expert guide will show you places that appear in or inspired the Harry Potter films.

The city of London is full of places that have to do with the Harry Potter films and with this tour you will not go unnoticed. A guide will show you Platform 9 and 3/4, Diagon Alley or Gringotts Bank while you walk around London like a Muggle.

This tour is also in small groups of (at most) about 25 people. This means that the guide can focus on the explanations you ask for in a more personalized way. The guides who do this kind of tour have two qualities: they know London inside out and they are also fans of the Harry Potter books and movies. Take advantage of the opportunity and enjoy every moment of the tour!

  • Recommended if... you want to enjoy the Harry Potter universe at a reduced price or if you are left wanting more after seeing Warner Bros.

Here are the walking tours of the Harry Potter locations in London

The Harry Potter space at St. Pancras train station.
The Harry Potter space at St. Pancras train station.

Throughout the city of London you have different locations that inspired the books and movies. Years ago fans had to locate them on their own, now there are expert guides who show them to you on a walking tour of Harry Potter locations while telling you trivia from the saga.

On this approximately two-hour walking tour, a guide specializing not only in the saga but also in the history of London, will take you to Harry Potter locations in London such as the following:

Platform 9 and ¾ at King Cross Station

At King Cross Station you can find a corner where the famous platform has been recreated with a luggage trolley going through the wall. You can take pictures on it and then go through the Harry Potter souvenir store while the guide tells you how this tourist spot was enabled after the success of the films and how J.K. Rowling used this station to set her books. The pity is that you won't be able to take the Hogwarts Express...

Diagon Alley in Leadenhall Market

This is one of the oldest markets in London and is inspired by the famous Diagon Alley where Harry bought books, potions and, of course, Ollivander's wands. It is one of the longest and most special stops on the tour; you will discover how reality inspires fiction and how fiction transforms this reality as well. Your guide will tell you all about Knockturn Alley or the Leaky Cauldron Inn and then leave you a few minutes to explore the area at your leisure.

Gringotts Bank and Australian Embassy

The famous goblin bank that appears in several of the movies, is inspired by the Australian Embassy in London, perhaps you had passed by there and had not noticed the striking resemblance, but to give you a clearer picture of it, your guide will show you pictures from the movies that show that indeed the wizarding bank was inspired by this building.

Premieres and Trafalgar Square

Not everything on this tour revolves around the locations of the films, you will also learn anecdotes about the actors and the significance of the saga and Trafalgar Square will probably be the place your guide will choose to tell you. It is precisely from there where thousands of fans lived the end of the saga as well as other moments related to the release of the films.

Book a Harry Potter tour in London

Other options to enjoy Harry Potter in London: Thames cruise tour or private tour

Original Harry Potter costumes
Original Harry Potter costumes

If you want to complete the experience of walking through the Harry Potter locations in London, you can book a tour that includes a cruise on the Thames. Also accompanied by a guide, you can learn interesting facts and anecdotes about the films, while relaxing on a boat ride on the river. This activity also includes interactive games that you can share on board with other fans of the saga.

And if the two-hour walking tour is not enough for you, I recommend that you consider the possibility of a private driving tour of the Harry Potter locations in which the guide will be dedicated exclusively to you and the group you are traveling with. This tour lasts about four hours, is fully adaptable to your preferences and is available in English, Spanish and French.

It is a highly recommended option if you are traveling to London with children, since you can ask the guide to alternate during the tour locations of the film with other emblematic tourist spots in London.

We compare all the options

Organize your own tour of the Harry Potter locations in London

Simon Rae| ©Leadenhall Market
Simon Rae| ©Leadenhall Market

If you decide to take a guided tour of the Harry Potter universe in London, whether it's a group tour or a private tour, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • As the tour is on foot, it is logical that you will not visit all the locations as London is a huge city and many of them are quite separated from each other.
  • The meeting point will always be in a central location that you can easily reach from your accommodation. If you have any questions you can ask your guide once you have booked your place or ask for a surcharge to be picked up from your hotel.
  • Tours last between two and three hours, so be prepared to walk. They depart almost every day of the week and the best time to go will depend on the weather.
  • You will have the chance to buy Harry Potter souvenirs at many of the stops on the tour as you will pass Harry Potter stores in different parts of London and the guide will leave you time to do so.
  • If you have the London Pass, you will have included a tour where you will see locations from Harry Potter and many other movies that were filmed or inspired in London such as Mary Poppins, Sherlock Holmes or James Bond. You have more information about the city passes in this article about the London Pass. London Pass.
  • Take a look at the theater listings when you have decided on your trip to London. If you are lucky, you may be able to see a performance of Harry Potter and the Cursed Legacy.

Book a Harry Potter tour in London

Visit Warner Bros. Harry Potter Studios

Simon Rae| ©Leadenhall Market
Simon Rae| ©Leadenhall Market

If, as is my case, you are a real Harry Potter saga geek, you also have to consider a visit to the Harry Potter Park at Warner Bros Studios London. To make the most of it I am going to give you some tips:

  • How to get there: Transportation to Warner Bros Studios is an important detail to take into account. Don't forget that they are far from the center of London so it is best to hire it in advance for the outward and return trip. From Watford Junction train station there are direct buses to the studios.
  • Duration of the visit: Take your time in each of the spaces of the Warner Bros. studios. Don't be in a hurry to see everything; the details are so well taken care of that it will be worth your while to recreate yourself in every nook and cranny. To see everything well, I recommend that you reserve between 3 and 5 hours for the visit.
  • Schedule: when you buy your ticket (always in advance, since you can only redeem it in the studios), you can choose the day and time of visit. I recommend you to choose the first shift to avoid crowds. Keep in mind that you have an entry time, but not an exit time, so more and more people will accumulate in the facilities.
  • Take the audio guide: it costs about five pounds, but it is worth it, while you immerse yourself in the magical world, they tell you details you did not know about the film, the actors and the saga.
  • If you go with children they will be fascinated by the tour, but the younger ones might be scared by the realism of some scenarios or the visit to the Forbidden Forest. Just keep this in mind in case you want to avoid these rooms.
  • Where to eat: Don't forget to stop by the bar if you want to try the famous butterbeer or the Frog café if you want a chocolate frog. In the surroundings there is no place to eat, so if your visit coincides with lunchtime, you will only have the opportunity to eat in the restaurant set up by the studio where the price will not be very cheap.
  • Souvernirs: The gift store is also a must, even if it is only to get our teeth long. Here you will find all the merchandising of the saga available. You can take pictures, but don't let the camera spoil the experience; better to live it than to record it.

Book tickets for Harry Potter Park

This is the Harry Potter tour of the Warner Bros. studios

Costumes of the saga on display at Warner Bros Studios
Costumes of the saga on display at Warner Bros Studios

During this visit, in addition to seeing the set design and costumes of the films, you will learn more about the saga and how the films were made, including special effects. Taking into account muggle details, the recommendation is to book tickets for Warner Bros. Studios in advance due to the large influx of visitors and hire transportation to and from there, as they are far from the center. A word of advice: be careful if you are offered resale tickets for the Harry Potter Studios.

If you want to make sure whether or not it is worth visiting the Warner Bros. studios to do the Harry Potter tour, I will give you a small sample of what you will find there. For starters, I'll tell you that the studios are divided into interiors and exteriors and the sets in both places not only have original objects from the movies, but also cinematic information on how they were made. But step by step.

Also, the Harry Potter studios in London are not just for watching: in many of them you will be able to do magic by waving a wand or lifting a broomstick.

What you'll see in the indoor studios

  • Start the tour in the Great Dining Hall, where you are greeted by the figures of the professors from the head table as they do every year with Harry, Ron and Hermione, or at least the years when no one crashes a flying car into a boxing willow (which, by the way, you'll also see on this tour).
  • After this it's time to walk through the corridors of the school, including the staircases that change places; in them you will see many pictures of former heads of Hogwarts houses including the Fat Lady.
  • You will follow the typical tour of the beginning of the course passing to the common room and then to the Gryffindor dormitory.
  • The professors' offices are also waiting for you during your visit, as well as showcases where you will find all the information you want about the sport of Quidditch.
  • You will visit Lucious Malfoy's house (creepy), the Weasley's living room or a very elaborate forbidden forest full of creatures, visual and sound effects.

What you will see in the exterior studios

As for the outdoor studios, they are also full of surprises. In them you will see the Dursley' s house on Privet Drive (stairwell included), the night bus, platform 9 and ¾, Ollivander's store and many more corners. The only downside to this tour is that once you leave the studios, it will be difficult to mingle with Muggles again.

Hiring transportation to the studios from London

It is not recommended to hire transportation without having secured your tickets, as their availability is very limited and you run the risk of getting there and they are sold out. In addition, many park ticket options also include travel from London.

In any case, if you have already purchased your ticket and what you want is to hire a shuttle service to drop you off at the gate, you can take a look at this post on how to get to the Harry Potter Studios from London.

Book tickets for Harry Potter Park

If you are interested in a tour of Harry Potter London you may also be interested in

Simon Rae| ©Leadenhall Market
Simon Rae| ©Leadenhall Market

If you enjoyed the Harry Potter walking tour experience, be sure to take the London walking tour during your visit to the UK capital. You may think that the Muggle world is not as charming as the magical one, but remember that London is also the city of Sherlock Holmes or Peter Pan and that, on its own, has many stories to offer you without resorting to fantasy.

As I say, this was my favorite, but the truth is that the offer of guided tours in London is endless and I have written a guide to help you sort out all the ideas, which are the best tours and why. You can read it in this article about Top 10 Tours and Excursions in London.