Potter’s Wizarding World opens this summer

This spring, over thousands of citizens from all over the world will spill into Orlando, Florida’s Universal Studios amusement park and head towards the Islands of Adventure for the opening of the first ever Harry Potter theme park. 

After two years of construction, the twenty acres of the Wizarding World will finally be complete.  Based off the bestselling Harry Potter adventures by J.K. Rowling, visitors can experience famous scenes from the books and movies.

“I heard it from a friend and looked up stuff online,” said freshman, Kaylee Weinert, a Harry Potter fan at RB, “When I heard, I was so excited!”

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is known as the theme park within a theme park since it is set in Universal Studios.  You first pass through the gates of Hogsmeade, a charming English-styled village with blue-steeped roofs and rustic taverns.  Visitors can play the roles of shopping witches and wizards by exploring the pleasant stores it has to offer. 

“It seems like a really good idea for an interactive attraction,” said Sam Goldsmith, another Harry Potter fan.   Dervish and Banges is one of the many shops where visitors can discover many fun types of merchandise such as Quidditch accessories, wizard attire, stationary kits, and even broomsticks.  You can also find Hogwarts uniforms and many more magical items.

Venturing forward in the village, you can make a sweet stop at Honeydukes.  This candy store is lined with bountiful shelves of sugary sweets that you can find in the books as well as the usual fudge and chocolate treats.  Take a look at all the delightful surprises in Honeydukes; but you know this store would not be complete without the legendary Bertie Bott’s Every-Flavour Beans where you can collect all the yummy and not-so-yummy flavors of these well-loved jelly-beans.

Step into the timeless dusty shop of Ollivanders and gaze upon the numerous stacks of dusty wand boxes.  Here, visitors can interact with the Wandkeeper and be fitted with the best wand.  Amongst the plentiful collections and sets are also wand replicas from the movies.  

Take a quick break by stopping at the Owl Post.  Rest on one of the benches, then gaze up to overview dozens of hooting owls lounging in the rafters of the high-arched ceiling.  As for the Owl Post, it functions as a real postal office where visitors can deliver their letters to be sent with Hogmeade’s postmark.  Also look around to find many different accessories and writing kits. 

For meals in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, there’s a rural tavern known as the Three Broomsticks if you’d like something to eat.  And lastly in the village of Hogsmeade is Zonko’s, the fun-filled shop teaming with humorous toys, fun trinkets, goofy treats, and an array of Zonko souvenirs.  As exciting as Zonko’s seems though, fans tend to disagree.

“I don’t mind, it looks like it has a lot of cool stuff.  But I would rather have Weasley Wizard Wheezes,” Weinert said and Goldsmitha agreed. It seems like a few elements of this upcoming theme park are very relevant to the books while some sights are a few new attractions you might only find in the films.

Outside Hogsmeade are three high-speed roller coasters.  Embark on the dragon challenge where you can ride either a Chinese Fireball or the infamous Hungarian Horntail; two separate furious rides.  In a lower key, there is the flight of the Hippogriff, a family rollercoaster where visitors can speed past Hagrid’s hut and the pumpkin patches.  Finally, visitors can explore the Hogwarts building and experience scenes from the books and films. 

“I can’t wait to see it [the theme park]!” said Weinert, “But it better be accurate!”

You can encounter many mythical creatures on the thrilling ride, featuring fascinating technology in order to portray the enthralling adventures of Harry Potter.  Plenty of RB students who have grown up with the books are thrilled to see Universal Studios bring the world of Harry Potter to life.

“Just seeing everything in it’s entirety, I think would be really amazing,” Goldsmith said, “like a book come alive!”