If you are a potter-head like me, who can’t go to the Harry Potter Studio Tour in London, then the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Universal Studios Japan (USJ) is a great alternative. Along with this travel guide, I will also share a travel video and of course picture spam! So prepare yourselves for some major eye candy!
Wizarding World of Harry Potter Attractions
Flying Ford Anglia
Not so far from the entrance, the wreck of the Flying Ford Anglia welcomed us. It feels totally real. It was very crowded at that time but I was not bothered because of excitement. I wanted to shout!
The Dreamy Village of Hogsmeade
As we walked down the tree-lined path towards the entrance of Hogsmeade, the Harry Potter theme music played which made me feel nervous, ecstatic and teary eyed all at the same time! I felt like a first year student about to see Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry for the first time and about to get sorted to whichever house I belong.
From the cobblestone roads to the snow-coated thatched cottages and shops in Hogsmeade, I felt like I was not in Universal Studios anymore. It was incredible how they managed to separate the Wizarding World of Harry Potter from the rest of Universal Studios Japan.
Hogsmeade Station and the Hogwarts Express
The Hogsmeade Station is the terminal of the Hogwarts Express, which brings students to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from London King’s Cross Station Platform 9¾. This is actually the first thing that you will see when you enter Hogsmeade.
When in Hogsmeade, go get some Butterbeer!
There are two Butterbeer carts in Wizarding World of Harry Potter, one of which is located near the entrance of Hogsmeade. The ones they sell at the theme park are non-alcoholic drinks that come in hot and cold. It tasted like soda with caramel whipped cream. You can opt to buy it in a regular plastic cup, or in a collectible mug that you can take home with you!
Honeydukes of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter
One of the most crowded areas in Wizarding World of Harry Potter is Honeydukes. Here you can find actual Bertie Bott’s Every-Flavour Beans, Chocolate Frogs, Peppermint Toad, etc. I was so excited to see what’s inside and it did not disappoint! That was exactly how I imagined it! Almost all edible merchandise are expensive though so I did not buy. Lol!
Just looking at the window displays will make you want to cry tears of joy! I kind of die from Happiness!
Ollivanders Wand Shop
In the Harry Potter series, Ollivanders Wand Shop was actually located in Diagon Alley, whereas the one built in Universal Studios Japan was a branch located in Hogsmeade. I’ve learned that this was the case at all Universal Studios locations. Anyhow, this was one of my most favorite parts of the tour. I was thrilled to see everyone’s wands displayed next to each other. Here you can purchase your own wand, which can serve as a collectible or for practicing magic. Lol!
Dervish and Banges
At Dervish and Banges, you could shop for magical supplies and wizarding equipment including Spectrespecs, Omnioculars, The Monster Book of Monsters, plus Quidditch equipment, Hogwarts uniforms, and an array of dragon-related merchandise.
The Monster Book of Monsters in a cage because a belt is not enough to contain it. I spent a good 2 minutes to see its aggressive nature but too bad it was asleep that time. Haha
Hogwarts Castle and the Black Lake
And of course, the hightlight of the whole Wizarding World of Harry Potter experience – HOGWARTS!!! It was unfortunate we did not get to try the Forbidden Journey ride. I need some floo powder right now. Take me back to Japan! Perhaps the next time I visit, I’ll probably line up to this attraction right away!
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando, Florida does not have Black lake. So when in this area, take tons of photos! Or just marvel at the views just like what I did.
Wizarding World of Harry Potter Travel Notes
What type of tickets do you need?
- 1-Day Studio Pass (about 3,800 pesos) – the general admission ticket to USJ
- Express Pass (starts at 2,600 pesos) – This is OPTIONAL. This pass allows you to skip long lines at top attractions like The Forbidden Journey 4K3D Ride and The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man 4K3D Ride.
- Timed Entry Tickets (FREE) – Entry to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is already included in the price of the 1-Day USJ Studio Pass. However, since this attraction gets very crowded, you need to get a Timed Entry Ticket from the Harry Potter ticket booth located at the Central Park of USJ.
Where to buy tickets?
Although you can buy tickets at USJ personally, I recommend buying it online from Voyagin or Klook so you won’t have to fall in line. Once paid by credit card, you will receive the e-ticket with the QR Code. No need to print this e-ticket since it can be scanned from the entrance of USJ from your smart phone.
How to maximize your visit in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter?
- Buy tickets online
- Arrive at USJ early before 8:30 AM
- Once inside the park, head straight to the Central Park to get Timed Entry Tickets
- Once inside the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, head straight to Hogwarts Castle and look for the queue line of the Forbidden Journey Ride. Prioritize this attraction because it is the most popular and lines get very long all day.
- Once done with the Forbidden Journey Ride, you may now explore the rest of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter
First Published: May 2, 2015
Have you tried their Butterbeer?
Yes, we did. It tastes like soda with butterscotch 🙂
My. I’m so jealous. How long did you have to line up to get in? 🙂
Hello Jacq! During peak season, tourists are required to get a timed entry ticket. You'll choose what time you can enter in WWOHP. When we went there, only two slots are left (5:30 PM and 5:45 PM). So while waiting, we just explored the whole Universal Studios and tried some rides 🙂
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