“No story lives unless someone wants to listen.” – J.K. Rowling

Guess who’s back on American soil? After two weeks in London, I am so excited to update everyone on how my trip went and my favorite sights and experiences!

For those who do not know, I spent ten days in London on an academic travel course about…wait for it…Harry Potter! As a huge fan and a self-proclaimed Weasley, this was the chance of a lifetime, and to be able to combine my love of the series with scholarly discussions about religion was the perfect marriage. This post addresses the first few days of the trip, including what I did, stories of the travels, and of course, how it relates to Harry Potter.

Our first full day was spent at St. Paul’s Cathedral, which was not only jaw-droppingly gorgeous and chock-full of history but also was the site of filming of the Divination stairs. Aside from the fact I had definitely not eaten enough to warrant a two hour walking tour around the cathedral, I think I learned more during that tour than I did in my religion class last semester (sad, but true). It was then that I realized that I was going to be eternally jealous of the amount of history that London had to share, and that America has nothing on that.

After St. Paul’s some friends and I went to Buckingham Palace for photos and sightseeing, and lucked out finding some empty gates to snap some pictures in front of. This was the point where I realized that the booties I brought were absolutely miserable to walk in. My feet were in the same level of pain as during the first day of sorority recruitment! Despite the pain, having a free afternoon was a great excuse to wander around London and really start to find our own ways around, making us feel more like locals than simply tourists.

And last but definitely not least for this post, we come to the Harry Potter Studio Tour. Admittedly, I had a bit of a struggle getting to the location, but once I was there I nearly bubbled over with excitement. As the tour guide said, on a scale of 1-10 of excitement, I was at a solid 9 3/4. Not going to lie, I definitely cried a little when I walked into the Great Hall, and my face stretched into a massive grin when I saw Weasley’s Wizard Wheezies. Having the opportunity just to walk down these “streets” and see the creatures and learn how everything came to life is something I know I will treasure for the rest of my life, and you can bet your sweet bippy that I will definitely return!

Enjoy the photos above and I’ll see you soon to tell you about the second half of my travels!