Note: For some reason WordPress decided to delete quite a bit of text from my post, thus I had put this on private to edit it later. If you’ve already read this post yesterday, you might have missed something!
Warning: Lot’s of fangirling and caps lock ahead.
This was originally going to be one post, but I quickly noticed that this was getting rather long… SO TWO POSTS IT IS.
I had fallen asleep quickly the previous evening, but woke up a few times during the night and finally got up at five in the morning, after all it was eleven in the morning in Amsterdam and I just couldn’t sleep anymore. So we showered, dressed and went out for breakfast, but that is irrelevant guys. Because after breakfast, we needed to get ready for the shuttle to… UNIVERSAL STUDIOS.
Since Diagon Alley wasn’t open yet when I was there two years ago, we decided to start there and then catch the Hogwarts Express to Islands of Adventure. Today would be dedicated to Harry Potter (though we couldn’t ride the Hippogriff that day and had to wait until the next day, but more on that later).
When we arrived at the park we had to turn in our voucher for our actual tickets, but there was a problem. We needed an ID and my mom hadn’t brought any. That same morning I had asked my mom if she didn’t need to bring any (not even for the tickets, just in general) and she was like ‘nah’. So when the woman behind the desk asked for an ID, naturally we were like ‘OH SHIT’. Thankfully the woman was really sweet and patient, and in the end we showed her an email from Arkefly where we had booked our trip and tickets for Universal and she allowed that (we were so lucky as I doubt there are many people who would have done that. She actually needed something with my mom’s name and picture on it). So after that nerve-wracking ordeal we entered the park and made our way to London (which sounds really weird haha). We did stop at the Revenge of the Mummy ride as that was one of our favourites two years ago and there was only a 10 minute wait. Oh, and of course selfies needed to be taken!
After that we really made our way to London, or at least where we thought it would be. A map would’ve been useful, but I could remember where they had been building two years ago, and you can’t really get lost in Universal! (though it would’ve been a lot like us to get lost). We knew we were headed in the right direction when we spotted King’s Cross, but of course we couldn’t take the train yet! No, we had to explore London, needed to take a picture with the Knight Bus and go to Diagon Alley!
I swear the people who build everything at Universal are so talented. I was constantly awed by everything.
ANYWAYS. It was time to enter Diagon Alley itself.
After taking a few photos we immediately made our way to Gringotts, as it would only get busier and busier (in case you didn’t know, that’s the ride in Diagon Alley). We were really lucky, as the wait was only 45 minutes! (I mean, I expected it to be at least an hour!). So after putting our stuff in a locker (it’s required, so IMMEDIATELY head there! And make sure you remember which finger you use for the fingerprint to open your locker) we quickly went inside. Part of the line is outside (with fans HALLELUJAH. As in ventilators. I’m sure I wasn’t the only Potterhead there, but I was praising the ventilators that saved us from dying from the heat) with some amusing posters:
The line outside was pretty quick as we made our way back inside, where you really enter the bank. Which is really, really gorgeous with goblins everywhere (who move and one of them even talks).
As you walk further into the bank you pass the goblins’ offices where you also sort of meet up with the Golden Trio and Griphook (you see them in the doors of the offices. We missed this the first time because the line went too quick, so keep an eye out!) as they talk about their break-in.
Then you end up at Bill Weasley’s office where he and another goblin talk about our tour at the bank and Bill decides to join our tour. I filmed their conversation, but it’s a lot more fun to see it for yourself! (If you want to see it, let me know and I’ll upload it on Youtube and send you the link) The holograms they used for Bill and the goblin are amazing- it looks so real!
Heads up: do not get too excited at this part. You’re not there yet! (I made that mistake). You end up in another line where you also get your ‘safety goggles’ aka 3D glasses, but this line is quite short and before you know it you’re already sitting in a cart!
The ride itself was a lot of fun and SO WELL MADE. The second day we were sitting in front of the cart and I actually got scared a bit (Voldy got a little bit TOO close). The actors appearing in it all did a great job and BILL WEASLEY GOT THE SCREEN TIME HE DESERVED. FINALLY. That was the first thing I thought as we neared the end of the ride haha. I just really love Bill guys.
I won’t tell you too much of course, as that takes the surprise away! I wish you guys could’ve seen/heard me. It was a lot of ‘AAAH’ obviously and ‘OH NO’ and ‘OH SHIT’. The only fault I had was that the employees working the ride said ‘have fun Muggles’. Muggles. I AM NOT A MUGGLE.
After we got off and did a bit of shopping (the store was so pretty! But all stores were) we made our way to the Leaky Cauldron as we were starving, especially me. And when I get really hungry I’m not fun to be around haha.
When you get inside you get in a line, but don’t worry! It’s a quick one (though maybe not so quick if you’re hungry…) and once you’re through you’re directed to a register where you order your food and pay, at which you get this really cool candle with a number on it to take to your table with you, where you have to wait for your food. Again, don’t worry: you get your food really fast, but sadly they take the candle away. I just loved holding that candle guys. It was so much fun, which may sound weird, but it was!
I ordered fish and chips, but from the kiddie menu as I knew that I would never be able to finish the adult sized one and I found that a waste of money. Of course I also got a Butterbeer! How could I not?!
And this is where I leave you! Next time: Shopping at Diagon Alley! More photos! I review Butterbeer ice cream! A video! And more! So stay tuned.
Have you been to Diagon Alley yet? Did you have as much fun as I did? Did you write a post about it? Tell me in the comments!
– The Writing Hufflepuff