13 Sights Every Harry Potter Fan Should See

How to add some extra magic to your London hen do

J.K. Rowling first had the idea for Harry Potter on a train to Kings Cross. Since that day, London has been a huge part of the wizarding world. So we’ve put together this guide to geeking out at many of the iconic London locations from the books and films to add extra magic to yourLondon hen weekend.

Platform 9¾ - Kings Cross Station

Perhaps the most iconic sight on this list, Hogwarts students depart from Platform 9¾ each year to board The Hogwarts Express. While the arched wall used in filming is actually between platforms 4 and 5, head over to the Harry Potter Shop, designed to look just like Ollivander’s wand shop and try Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans. Next to it, you’ll find a magical photo opportunity - a trolley pushed ‘through’ the wall.

Nearest Tube: King’s Cross St. Pancras

St Pancras International

After Harry and Ron miss the Hogwarts Express in their second year, they take off in the Weasley’s flying Ford Anglia. Of course, they do so outside the impressive Victorian architecture of St Pancras International where they were seen “by no less than seven Muggles” - which is actually pretty lucky considering how busy it can get.

Nearest Tube: King’s Cross St. Pancras

Piccadilly Circus

As Harry, Ron and Hermione flee Bill and Fleur’s wedding in Deathly Hallows Part 1, an unfortunately timed apparition nearly lands them under a bus in none other than London’s iconic Piccadilly Circus. This busy city landmark is hugely popular with tourists even before it became the filming location, so it’s worth taking a stroll through - although if you don’t want to get hit by a bus, don’t retrace their steps exactly.

Nearest Tube: Piccadilly Circus

Millennium Bridge

Of all the shots of London, it’s the Half-Blood Prince’s opening that’s the most ominous as this suspension bridge begins to twist and turn before plunging into the Thames. After this, it’s understandable you’d be cautious crossing it, but although it can be insanely windy, Death Eaters probably won’t rip it apart. Instead, you can enjoy views of St Paul’s Cathedral and the Tate Modern.

Nearest Tube: Blackfriars

The Leaky Cauldron - Charing Cross Road

In the books, the gateway to the wizarding world and Diagon Alley is described as a “tiny grubby-looking pub” on Charing Cross Road. None of the pubs actually fit the description, so it’s up to you to decide which it might be. Just around the corner, Cecil Court seems more likely to have inspired the pub and Diagon Alley, with all its quirky shops.

Nearest Tube: Leicester Square

Diagon Alley - Leadenhall Market

In the Philosopher’s Stone, Leadenhall Market was the home to Diagon Alley, and you can find an opticians on Bull’s Head Passage which was the original filming location for the Leaky Cauldron. Leadenhall Market is an ornate Victorian-style covered market dating back to the 14th century; it’s filled with colourful storefronts that bring their own kind of magic to the streets of London.

Nearest Tube: Monument

Diagon Alley (again) - Borough Market

In the later films, more specifically, The Prisoner of Azkaban, the entrance to the Leaky Cauldron was filmed at a flower shop underneath a railway arch in Borough Market. Next door to that is the filming location for Third Hand Book Emporium where Harry meets Gilderoy Lockhart and Lucius Malfoy for the first time. If you’re around Borough Market anyway, might as well check out the amazing food on offer.

Nearest Tube: London Bridge

Gringotts Bank - Australia House

The grand, goblin-filled wizarding bank, Gringotts, which we see in the Philosopher’s Stone and Deathly Hallows Part 2 was filmed at the Australia House on the Strand. It’s, as the name suggests, the Australian Embassy which means you can’t have a look around inside, so you’ll have to imagine the interior is as impressive as the outside.

Nearest Tube: Temple

Westminster Tube Station

On their way to the Ministry of Magic in the Order of the Phoenix, Harry and Arthur Weasley travel through Westminster Station. You might have laughed at Mr Weasley’s inability to use the ticket barriers, but as every Londoner knows, this happens a lot. When filming this, they closed the station for a whole day - you can only imagine the chaos it caused. It’s a popular station close to tons of landmarks, so it’s worth exploring.

Nearest Tube: Westminster

Lambeth Bridge

As the magical night bus hurtles through London at full speed in The Prisoner of Azkaban, it’s on the red and green Lambeth Bridge that its extreme stretching abilities come to good use as it squeezes through traffic. As a Muggle, the closest experience you’ll find is riding a normal red double-decker, which, let’s face it, is a lot less magical.

Nearest Tube: Lambeth North / St James’s Park

Tower Bridge

While only in Order of the Phoenix for literally just two seconds as Harry and the Order soar past on their brooms, London’s famous landmark is unmistakable. They also pass the HMS Belfast and much of London’s skyline in this thrilling sequence. The best way to follow in Harry’s footsteps (broom-steps?) is to speed down the Thames in a speedboat or maybe just a cruise.

Nearest Tube: London Bridge

Grimmauld Place - Claremont Square

When it came to filming Sirius’s hidden home and the Order of the Phoenix headquarters, Number 12 Grimmauld Place, it was Islington’s very own Claremont Square that made the cut. It features in two films, Order of the Phoenix and Deathly Hallows Part 1.

Nearest Tube: Angel

Ministry of Magic - Scotland Place

Scotland Place is a pretty unremarkable little road known mainly for its red telephone booth which was used as the Ministry of Magic’s visitors’ entrance. Unfortunately, it was a prop and is no longer there - looks like you won’t be going to the Ministry after all. This is also the same road in Deathly Hallows: Part 1 where the trio corner Ministry employees to disguise themselves as them.

Nearest Tube: Charing Cross

London is the perfect place for an unforgettablehen do. We offer hundreds of fun and exciting activities and nightlife ideas across all of these areas in the city. Check out ourLondon hen do ideasfor inspiration