Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Deliciously Sweet Day at Hogwarts

I remember reading the first Harry Potter book - I must have been about 11 - while I was, oddly enough, riding the Eurostar to London. I was quickly hooked and fascinated by the world of wonder and whimsy JK Rowling had created. I devoured every book (and movie!) and even wept a few tears when the series ended. There's always a feeling of utter sadness when you finish a book that has transported you elsewhere, isn't there?

But something about the Harry Potter story endlessly lives on. I recently started re-reading the books (now on an e-reader!) and am happily reconnecting with the story -- and the numerous details about the characters I had long forgotten about. The magic of these books, I think, are not so much in the overarching storyline of good versus evil but rather in the creation of a world from the ground up. A world so well described that you understand the way it operates and can imagine what it would be like to live in.

Last week, I made my way to Hogwarts (in Florida that is!) to visit the Harry Potter park I had heard so much about. So many little details made the experience magical - from feather quill pens used to sign receipts in the different stores to being able to taste the array of treats that makeup Harry Potter's world.
Even in the setting of sunny Florida, the shops of Hogsmede seemed wintery and quaint, with storefronts that recreated the magical window displays described in the books and seen in the movies. The best part was seeing dozens of amazed children (and adults) from all around the world tasting butterbeer for the first time with excited grins (it's a frothy mix of gingerbready cream soda and marshmallow-like fluff if you're wondering!). It was a little bit like being allowed into a new world for the very first time.

Entering Honeydukes was by far my favourite part. The candy store is filled to the brim with the candies and sweets from the series -- from chocolate frogs, to every flavour beans (some of the jelly beans were deliciously sweet, others purposely revolting -- like earwax, rotten egg and soap -- so much so that I had to spit a few out!). They were exactly like I pictured them to be when I read about them.






We then had lunch at the Three Broomsticks, where we sat down for a giant, smoked turkey leg with corn on the cob and some fish & chips and a glass of butterbeer.

12 comments:

EasyKoreanFood said...

Wow, I'm incredibly jealous that you went there! I'd love to go one day hopefully :) I recently just started a youtube Korean food channel, EasyKoreanFood, where you can learn how to make fast & easy Korean food! It would mean the world to me if you could check it out because I'm just starting out! Thanks!

La Table De Nana said...

I hope my 4 little boys will one day get to enjoy that place..It looks like so much fun..Love that pink spiral staircase w/ the apothecary jars..
Miss Florida:)

Gourmantine said...

Wow, I know quite a few people who'd kill to spend a day there. Lucky you :)

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

Thank you for this post! I've been dying to go to Harry Potter world and see what it's like. I've read things in the newspaper and magazines but of course they never have enough photos but you do! :D

Sara {home is where the cookies are} said...

Thanks for you comment over at Home is Where the Cookies Are!! I had to come check out your blog ;) We are going to Orlando later in the year, and my kiddos are huge Harry Potter fans - I'm sure we'll make a stop here. It looks like so much fun - and I think I'm going to have to do a little reading so I can fully appreciate it!

Cathy at Wives with Knives said...

Great fun for kids of all ages. I know my grandchildren would love a visit. And I'm sure I would enjoy it as well. I loved the books and this would bring them to life.

Beth said...

This looks wonderful! I'm a huge Harry Potter fan and would love to visit.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

That is such an awesome place! I'd love to spend a day there.

Cheers,

Rosa

Minha vida de campo said...

Que legal. Eu também era fã da série. Gostaria de conhecer esses lindo lugar.
Tenha uma ótima semana.

Jan @ Family Bites said...

You've totally inspired me to take my boys there! We're planning on spending some time in the Carolinas this summer and are looking at taking a little side trip to Orlando for a visit. It looks like you had a great time.

Caroline @ chocolate and carrots said...

I love Harry Potter World! Looks like you had a great time!

Kitchen Butterfly said...

What a treat - I really like the sound of the butter beer. Hmmmm.

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