The Making of Harry Potter - Studio Tour in London

Harry Potter Studio Tour


Last month, my husband and I went on a trip to Scotland & England. It went by so quickly and overall, I felt like we barely enjoyed London. Perhaps because we only spent a day and a half in the city proper. However - one of the things I had as a MUST DO on our list was the Harry Potter studio tour. I laughed. I cried. OK I cried a lot. This tour is not an amusement park filled with rides. It's the actual Warner Brothers J & K studio lots filled to the brim with real costumes, props and sets used in all eight movies.


Cost.
It was a modest $120 USD for our two tickets. And 110% worth it.

Opt for an earlier time
We had a 3:30 tour time. Even though the studio closes at 8pm, we definitely ran out of time. The studio takes up two lots, with a courtyard and cafe break in-between. We found ourselves rushing through the end of the first part to make it outside before sunset. There are some amazing props and buildings to photograph outside (the Potter house, 4 Privet Dr, Hogwarts Walkway, Knight Bus, Weasley's enchanted car, and so much more!).

Taking the Studio Bus
The studio bus is one of the few ways to be brought directly to the studio (the photo below was taken right as I got off the bus). It's 2.5 GBP a person, so a 5 LB note will get you two tickets with  free return. They only accept cash. Plan to arrive at the station 1 hr before your tour time. The wait for the bus was extremely long. We waited in line for at least an 30 minutes and two bus cycles before finally getting on-board. By the time we arrived to the studio, waited in the line to get in and actually made it inside - we were perfectly in line for our 3:30 tour. The last bus out of the studio actually leaves at 7:45. Even though we lined up outside at 7:20 pm the line was already long again. So always give yourself at least 30 minutes to wait for your bus on the return journey.

Try the Butterbeer
Take some time to try the butterbeer. We got both the drink and the ice cream. and of course a plastic souvenir cup. It's a little pricey, but for a once in a lifetime experience we thought it was worth it. The ice cream was my favorite.

Save up for the gift shop.
We were prepared to throw down some serious cash in the gift shop. There are so many crazy and fantastic things to see in the gift shop. They've also stashed away hundreds of more props in the gift shop to see, so look up! Art books, prints, prop replicas, wands, house clothing, books, collectible toys, Weasley candies, quidditch balls, uniforms, robes, Neville's sweater - you name it! You can probably buy it here. We bought 3 wands, some jewelry, two chocolate frogs (our cards were Guilderoy Lockhart and Salazar Slytherin) and some other candies. The wands here are nicer than any other wands we had seen during our trip, including the ones at the Platform 9 3/4 shop in Kings Cross station.

Take all the photos!
Bring your camera! Bring extra memory cards! Charge your phone! Oh my god I took over 400 photos (and only posted 40 - what amazing self control). There's so much to see and do here. If you have it, use a lens that performs better in low light. There were a few rooms with great lighting. But a large number of my photos didn't come out too well because all the lens I brought don't take in a lot of light.



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The was easily one of our favorite things in London. It was worth sacrificing half a day. If you're a fan of Harry Potter, then what are you waiting for?


- Stephanie

Wanderlusting for the U.K.

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In just a few days we'll be traveling to Scotland and England for a much needed vacation. This is the first one we've taken since our Honeymoon and I can't be more excited.

I don't want to post too much to spoil the fun. But we'll be traveling for 10 days in Scotland, Liverpool & London. We'll be meeting friends for the first time in person and checking our some fantastic spots. Among them, we'll be exploring the Warner Brothers London: Harry Potter Studios tour and a day trip through the Scottish Highlands.

Sigh... is it time to wander yet?


~ Stephanie

Casa Collections #1

One of the most favorite things in my home is the large built in display we have in our living room. It's packed to the brim with books, comics, toys and collectibles. I'm constantly shifting things around in here but overall this is how it's stayed for the last two years. Nothing shows off who we are as a family than to have this smack in the middle of our room for guests to enjoy.

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We've got lots of little collections around the house and many displays in every room. We're a bit cramped for space because of all the neat things we collect! I hope to give you all a home tour sometime soon. Even though we've nearly been in our house for 3 years, I can't help but feel like it's never quite done. We're currently remodeling the office. So expect some sneak peaks soon. ;)


~ Stephanie

Happy New Year

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I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season and New Years.

We failed at sending out a card this year but managed to snap this snazzy photo of us in our holiday sweaters. Our cats stayed still for all of .5 seconds before everything went to hell.


Here's a wonderful 2017!


~ Stephanie

The League of Thrones: GoT Fantasy League

a fantasy football style league, but with Game of Thrones characters.

This last weekend we had a a really wonderful game of thrones celebration with friends to watch the Premiere of Season 6. To make everything more interesting, a friend of ours suggested we join a Fantasy League involving the characters from Game of Thrones.



**WARNING: Season 6 Spoilers ahead ** 

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Fantasora


is a fan-made website devoted to running a Game of Thrones fantasy league. It's super easy to setup and fun to pick your players. Every named character is draftable! You score points throughout the season for the following things your selected characters do:

  • Killings
  • Insults Delivered / Funny Lines
  • Acts of Intercourse
  • Glasses of Wine Consumned
  • Political Wins
  • Death
  • Special Abilities


I named my team "Bran's Downplayed Puberty" to poke fun at the fact that this kid has aged so much. Taking a season off didn't help him much. Is he as tall as Hodor now?


My team had a strong start. Doran Martell walked in the first episode and then was killed. This won me a whopping 109 POINTS!!!! The next highest scorer on our team has 36 to put it into perspective. It's really fun and has kept me more engaged with the characters. Every time Brienne of Tarth went to kill someone I was super excited! And of course, saddened one of my characters was a no-show.



It'll be exciting to see how the rest of the season pans out. I sure hope this lead holds true for the rest of the season. With many battles and coups coming up, I'm sure it'll be an exciting adventure.

This scene awarded points to both characters!

You can start your own Fantasy Game of Thrones league on Fantasora's website. It's not too late!
http://fantasora.com/



XO,
Stephanie