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Muggle-Proof Magic: Exploring Universal Orlando's Wizarding World   Sara Walker

Muggle-Proof Magic: Exploring Universal Orlando's Wizarding World Sara Walker

For anyone that has been to Universal Orlando, it is no surprise that it immerses you into a world of fantasy and wonder. From Halloween Horror Nights to The Grinch Character Breakfast – the holidays are always focused on a theme to enhance your experience. However, for me, the most magical day to visit Universal Orlando is any day, as long as you visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.   

I grew up as a devoted Harry Potter fan. I vividly remember standing in line for hours outside bookstores eagerly awaiting every new book release. Even my 16th birthday party revolved around a new Harry Potter movie release, so when Universal Orlando announced that they were opening up a new section of the park that would be centered around the world of Harry Potter, I was happier than a kid in a candy store… or should I say a young wizard in Honeydukes. 

A few times a year, I try to visit The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Here, not only do I find myself transported to a magical universe, but I am also whisked back to a time of childhood nostalgia. Similar to how wizards improve their spells or Quidditch skills over time, I’ve also perfected my strategy to navigating this fantasy-filled universe.  

Prior to arrival, it is important to select a resort that will allow you to make the most of your stay. When you stay at certain Universal Orlando resorts, you are given early access to the parks. My personal resort preference is the Loews Royal Pacific Resort. This resort is a Polynesian experience with lush, tropical scenery. Not only does this resort transport you to an oasis, you also automatically receive an express pass with your booking, and it is only a half-mile walk to the Universal CityWalk. 

Once I arrive at the park, I make my way straight to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter where the magic begins. My first stop is almost always Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure. Here, you ride on the bike or in the sidecar of Hagrid’s motorcycle as you are whisked through the sky. You cannot use an express pass here, so it is essential to find your spot in line before the park gets too crowded. Take full advantage of the early access that you receive from staying at a Loews property.  

After I get a boost of adrenaline from this unique rollercoaster, I’m ready to explore! It is at this point that I wander around Hogsmeade and take in all of the sights of this enchanting village. From the charming storefronts to the cobblestone streets, every detail is meticulously crafted, offering an immersive experience that goes beyond mere theme park attractions. This is a perfect time to get photographs without the crowds. 

After exploring Hogsmeade, it is time to hydrate with an essential – Butterbeer! Just as it is described in the book, Butterbeer is a creamy, butterscotch-flavored beverage. Once I’ve fueled up on Butterbeer, I pay a visit to either The Leaky Cauldron or Three Broomsticks for lunch. Both of the restaurants are nearly identical to the book’s description, capturing every essence of wizarding world described in J.K. Rowling's magical universe. 

Once you’re ready to explore a different universe, don’t worry! If your feet are sore and your broomstick riding skills are rusty – you can always take the Hogwarts Express from park to park. The iconic train provides a seamless transition between Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure, allowing you to travel in style and comfort – no matter where your adventures take you! 

A theme park vacation every year may not be for everyone, but for my fellow Gryffindors who value loyalty and bravery, this may be the perfect getaway for you! Ready to immerse yourself in a world where magic is real and adventure awaits? Reach out to me or your travel advisor today!