Itinerary based on shooting location
DAY 1: LONDON INTRODUCTORY TOUR – TOWER
The tour begins with an overview of LONDON with a leisurely drive around the main areas including Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square, The Thames, St. Pauls and The City. You then have the opportunity to visit The TOWER OF LONDON, the 1,000 year old fortress which has been used as a Royal Palace, a prison and a zoo. It was here that many were executed, including Anne Boleyn and Sir Thomas More. Crown Jewels and many historic exhibits such as Henry VIII’s suit of armour are on view. It was by TOWER BRIDGE that Harry travels down the Thames by broomstick in the Order of the Phoenix.
DAY 2: EYE – DIAGON – PLATFORM 9 3/4 – GRINGOTTS
The first stop is The LONDON EYE, reached by passing Westminster Abbey, The Houses of Parliament and BIG BEN. You get a superb view of the whole city and the route taken by Harry on his broomstick along the RIVER THAMES. DIAGON ALLEY, filmed in Leadenhall Market, includes the entrance to The LEAKY CAULDRON. The starting point for the Hogwarts Express, PLATFORM 9 ¾ is at King’s Cross. At WESTMINSTER Underground, the deepest excavation in central London, we travel on the escalator used by Harry and Ron. Finally, Australia House, which was transformed into GRINGOTT’S BANK.
DAY 3: WARNER BROS – HERMIONE’S HOME – ZOO
The Warner Brothers Studios in North London we will take part in ‘THE MAKING OF HARRY POTTER TOUR’. After lunch, we pass No.9 Heathgate, the house which appears in The Deathly Hallows: Part 1 as the home of Hermione Granger. We walk up the street towards St. Jude’s Church as Hermione does in the movie before, visiting LONDON ZOO where Harry discovered that he could speak to snakes. It is in the 1927 Proctor and Dawber reptile House that Harry makes the safety Glass disappear, setting free the Burmese Python.
DAY 4: LACOCK – GLOUCESTER – COTSWOLDS
The 13th Century village of LACOCK has been the location for Harry Potter, Pride and Prejudice and Cranford. The cloisters under the old abbey became the CLASSROOM for Professor Quirrell’s Defense of the Dark Arts and where Severus Snape teaches potions. Also, Harry looks into the Mirror of Erised. Horace Slughorn’s house is also in the village. The Norman Cathedral at GLOUCESTER contains the shrine of Edward II and appears in three of the Harry Potter movies, particularly around the extensive cloisters. We travel through scenic COTSWOLD villages to Shakespeare’s Stratford for the evening.
DAY 5: LAKE DISTRICT – BEATRIX POTTER
The day begins by travelling to The LAKE DISTRICT, a National Park with dramatic scenery of mountains and lakes. You travel the length of Ullswater on a steam boat before visiting the idyllic village of Grasmere where William Wordsworth lived in Dove Cottage. Finally, we wind along narrow roads to Hawkeshead to visit the BEATRIX POTTER which displays many original paintings and drawings of characters such as Peter Rabbit, Jeremy Fisher and Jemima Puddleduck, before retiring to your hotel for the evening.
DAY 6: EDINBURGH TOUR – ELEPHANT HOUSE CAFE
On arriving in EDINBURGH we undertake a tour of the main attractions, beginning at the historic CASTLE which dominates the city and walking down the ROYAL MILE to the magnificent ST GILES CHURCH. After lunch in the ELEPHANT HOUSE Café, where Harry Potter was created by J.K. Rowling, you see the monument to ‘Greyfriar’s Bobby’, the Skye Terrier who visited his master’s grave every day for 14 years until his own death in 1872. Continuing down the Royal Mile to the Scottish Parliament building and PALACE OF HOLYROOD HOUSE, the Queen’s official residence in Edinburgh.
DAY 7: ALNWICK CASTLE – HADRIAN’S WALL
ALNWICK CASTLE is often called ‘The Windsor of the North’. The seat of the Dukes of Northumberland it is an imposing building with many works of art and grounds landscaped by Capability Brown. The Lion Arch was the entrance to HOGWARTS and it is where Harry’s first flying lesson with Madame Hooch takes place. From Alnwick, through Northumberland National Park to HADRIAN’S WALL andHousesteads, one of the best preserved forts along the wall with magnificent views of the countryside. Built by the Romans in AD122, the 73 mile wall is now a World Heritage site.
DAY 8: DURHAM CITY – HOGSMEADE
DURHAM CATHEDRAL is one of the finest Norman structures in Britain, founded in 1093. The Cathedral doubles for both interior and exterior views of Hogwarts and the Chapter House was used as Professor Donegal’s classroom. Quidditch practice was filmed in the cloisters and it was here that Harry regurgitated slugs in the Chamber of Secrets. The castle, now part of the University is next to the cathedral. You then journey 18 miles on the North Yorkshire Moors Steam Railway. Goathland station became HOGSMEADE station in Harry Potter and the station shop became the ‘Prefects Room’ and also the ‘Wizard’s Room’.
DAY 9: YORK CITY – MALFOY MANOR
YORK is medieval, built on a Roman city dating from AD71 and it is where Constantine was made Emperor of Rome in AD306. It became a Christian stronghold under the Saxons and became a Viking centre from 867. You explore the city walls and the fascinating interwoven streets of the city centre. York MINSTER is an extravagant Gothic cathedral and the largest in Northern Europe. It was begun in 1220 and took 250 years to complete. HARDWICK HALL is one of the finest Tudor mansions in the country. It doubles as Malfoy Manor in the opening sequence of The Deathly Hallows part I.
DAY 10: BURGHLEY HOUSE – CAMBRIDGE
On the way back to London we visit BURGHLEY HOUSE, built by William Cecil, 1st Lord Burghley and chancellor to Elizabeth I. The house was built in 1555 and the magnificent deer where Verrio painted Hell as the mouth of a cat filled with sinners. We drive to CAMBRIDGE where you are guided through the parks and colleges visit King’s College, founded by Henry VI park was created by Capability Brown. The interior is lavish and has the famous Hell staircase, in 1441. The chapel’s fine fan-vaulted ceiling is supported by 22 buttresses and the stained glass windows date from the C16th.