Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Where Is Diagon Alley in 'Harry Potter'?


Universal Studios has done Places of Fancy a magical favor. By adding Diagon Alley to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, the theme park resort has obliviated the need for us to draw half-ass comparisons between the beloved Potter landmark and witch markets in third-world countries. 

Diagon Alley, or at least its Earth version, opened Jul. 8 to rip-roaring reception, as you would understand. If you have been a Harry Potter bibliophile since the 1990s, or even just a casual fan of the movie adaptations, you can't be faulted to walk in it like this:

For the culturally illiterate Muggle, Diagon Alley is like the Oxford Street of the sorcery world. Universal really pulled out all the stops on this one. 

Magic is in the air. Photo via WDW Magic

A rollercoaster is the centerpiece of the whole thing because theme parks. The thrill ride, called Escape from Gringotts, is supposed to take place in the bowels of the eponymous bank, where Harry and friends rode mine trolleys in search of horcruxes. Escape from Gringotts promises to be unlike any other with specially acted scenes projected at certain points of the ride. You even have to be at least as tall as a goblin to ride: 42 inches.

Helena Bonham-Carter slips into Bellatrix's boots again for Escape from Gringotts. 

You would also want to sidle by Ollivander's. If you're craving for seven, eight inches of supernatural awesomeness, Christian Grey Ollivander is the man.

Via Disney and More

But what's the use of wands if you can't perform actual magic? At certain locations in the Alley, you can wag wands and expect some magical feedback. James Phelps, Fred Phelps, and Bonnie Wright, aka the Weasley siblings, will show you how.


Otherwise, Fred and George Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes will provide all the magical folderol you need.  

Via NPR

Because magic is both black and white, Diagon Alley gives you options. You're free to make the right wrong turn to sinister Knockturn Alley.

Polish your Imperius and Cruciatus curses at Borgin and Burkes. Via Ricky Brigante

Then there's the Leaky Cauldron, where you can guzzle Butterbeer and grab some traditional British nosh like fish and chips.

Via Ricky Brigante

But if you seek Butterbeer-flavored ice cream instead, there's Florean Fortescue's Parlour.
Diagon Alley comes complete with a mock-up of King's Cross station in London. From there it will take you to another end of the Wizarding World: Hogsmeade in Universal's Islands of Adventure.


We have barely enumerated all the shops, eateries, and hangouts here, but we can assure you that it's a lifestyle district to end all lifestyle districts. Get your grocery list ready.

Via Gamer Hub

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