With the flick of a wand, Universal Orlando gave us a Harry Potter Christmas in full-blown wizarding world of splendor.
Both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley got a Christmas makeover for the 2017 season. There’s holiday themed food, drink, decor, live entertainment and a spectacular projection show beamed onto Hogwarts Castle.
DECK THE STREETS WITH BOUGHS OF HOLLY
There’s festive decor and ornate garlands lining the streets of Hogsmeade, Diagon Alley and the London Embankment.
Each storefront is decked out with uniquely themed decorations.
SPECTACULAR CASTLE PROJECTIONS
The icing on the Harry Potter Christmas cake is the magical holiday transformation of Hogwarts Castle.
State-of-the-art projection mapping and special effects wrap the iconic castle – bringing holiday spirit and memorable Christmas moments from the Harry Potter series to life-like never before.
The Harry Potter Christmas show starts around dusk and last for about 8 minutes. The show is repeated roughly every 20 minutes.
You’ll need to have your plans mapped out in advance because traffic flow is controlled. As soon as dusk falls, the entrance to Hogsmeade via the bridge from Jurassic Park is closed off and becomes an exit only. The only way to enter is from The Lost Continent.
The layout is also made into two lanes with tape guiding your way. The widest part on the right is for those who want to watch the show. You shuffle forward up the incline with the crowd until you reach a viewing area. The left hand land is for those not waiting to view the show and is generally downwards towards the Lost Continent exit.
The Harry Potter Christmas makeover includes an array of live entertainment.
In Hogsmeade, The Frog Choir perform a bunch of traditional Christmas songs and a few spellbinding songs:
- “Christmas at Hogwarts” – This wizarding carol casts a Christmas spell that echoes through the halls of Hogwarts.
- “We Wish You A Merry Christmas” – The choir will bring a new and festive life to this classic holiday song.
- “The Most Magical Yule Ball of All” – Hosting the TriWizard Tournament also brings with it a magical event known as the Yule Ball. This song captures all the magic, elegance and wonder of this very special night.
- “I Cast a Spell On Father Christmas” – This fun song is a cautionary tale asking young wizards to be sure of the incantation before casting a spell.
Over in Diagon Alley, Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees belt out songs from the Christmas album Nothin’ Like a Holiday Spell dressed in holiday finery. Songs include:
- “Nothing Like a Holiday Spell” – There are many spells and charms in the wizarding world. But during this time of year, conjuring warm feelings of yuletide cheer is the most magical spell of all.
- “Accio Christmas” – This calypso inspired song officially brings a Christmas rhythm of the islands to the British Isles.
- “My Baby Gave Me a Hippogriff for Christmas” – Have you ever received a gift that wasn’t exactly what you were expecting? This song describes one such moment our singing sorceress experienced.
- “A Witch and Wizard’s Wintry Wondrous Land” – This classic wizarding carol shows there’s nothing more lovely than sharing the Christmas season with family friends—and of course Celestina’s fans.
WHAT’S ON THE MENU FOR THIS HARRY POTTER CHRISTMAS?
Holiday Feast: Both The Three Broomsticks in Hogsmeade Village and Leaky Cauldron in Diagon Alley are offering a two course Holiday Feast with traditional British favorites. The platter serves four and costs $64.99. Additional portions can be added at $15.99 per person. The appetizer is Winter Harvest Salad with mustard ale vinaigrette dressing. Main course includes oven roast turkey with a wild mushroom and sage stuffing. Sides include brown-butter and walnut Brussels sprouts, root vegetables, roast potatoes and English chipolata sausages. The platter is served with traditional gravy and spiced cranberry sauce.
Pudding: Also available at both locations for the holidays is a traditional Christmas Pudding with hot brandy butter and orange glaze.
Soup: Over in The Leaky Cauldron, there’s a butternut squash soup drizzled with sour cream and topped with chives.
Butterbeer: This delicious sweet offering comes 3 ways – the usual frozen or chilled is available all year round, but during the Harry Potter Christmas events you can get it served up warm too. You can also get Butterbeer ice-cream, Butterbeer fudge and Potted Butterbeer Cream throughout the year.
It’s not just a Harry Potter Christmas, there’s plenty more going on in Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure too. Check out the array of Holiday events planned at Universal Orlando.
So what are you waiting for? Start planning your magical Christmas in Orlando right away!