Saturday, March 26, 2011

It's truly magical

Harry Potter World or more properly "The Wizarding World of Harry Potter" as the PR people would have me say, is truly magical.
It's pretty amazing what lots and lots of money and a little imagination can do.
I can tell you a little about it here but I have to save the most of it for The Deseret News travel section story since the paper authorized the trip.
This is the magical place
It's a kingdom inside a park or rather another piece of the Universal Studios puzzle. (If you don't know where it is exactly, just follow the thundering herd.)
There are basically four "rides" to be ridden: the ride inside the castle which is immense and richly detailed in Harry Potterism, the kiddie ride on the Hippogriff and the duelings dragons — a pair of intertwining roller coaster rides that take your breath and shoes away.
The whole world is located inside a realistic and unusual setting that includes screeching plants with baby faces and tall, stone buildings with crooked chimneys.
There are sweet shops and wand shops and the joke shop where you can get Extendable Ears and Frisbees with fangs.
Magical Marc
You can spend money in every direction (wands, T-shirts and "Fluffy" stuffed dogs cost $30, robes are $100).
There's Butter Beer abundantly available in souvenir cups ($10.50), frozen and with froth. Nearly everyone in the park is walking around with a froth mustache.
For the Harry Potter, Ron and Hermione fan, it's truly like stepping into their world. The music from the movies is playing overheard and the workers are all dressed like Gringott's goblins (poor kids in black in the Florida sunshine!)
There's plenty to take in and you feel like part of a friendly crowd since everywhere you look there's somebody dressed like Harry or Ron or Hermione.
A wicked toss
If and when you go, here are my top suggestions: Go early in the day. Get an Express Plus pass to buy your way in more quickly. Wear sunscreen. Pack lightly or in pockets so you don't have a big bag to haul around or to check. (The lockers are free but checking things takes valuable time.)
And take money, lots and lots of money and a little imagination.

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