With the Harry Potter universe being brought to life in every little detail inside Universal Orlando’s newest theme park, Diagon Alley, you might expect the restaurants within to be great, but they exceed even your highest expectations. From the look and feel of each restaurant to the taste of the food itself, it feels like you’ve been transported into the pages of a Harry Potter book and are dining at The Leaky Cauldron or Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlour with Harry, Ron, and Hermione. Here are our top five dining experiences at Diagon Alley!
I felt like I was experiencing a true moment of magic as soon as I entered the gates to Diagon Alley. The street is in total darkness with windows and names glowing along the way. We walked to Gringotts bank, where we had a reservation, and it was such an incredible experience walking through and finding iconic buildings such as The Leaky Cauldron and Eeylops Owl Emporium. One really cool feature that they have is that they actually have live owls on site! If you want to buy any other souvenirs or gifts for your friends back home, there are plenty of shops lining the street.
It’s no secret that Butterbeer is one of the most popular drinks from the Harry Potter series. And, it’s been lovingly recreated in a variety of ways across North America. At Diagon Alley you can order your very own – with just the right mix-ins – to sip and savor while on your way around the shops. It comes served frozen or hot (perfect for cold days), and has quite a bit less sugar than other versions you may have tried in your lifetime.
The Great Feast Buffet
If you want to experience the magic for yourself, head to The Great Feast Buffet, which features an array of stations to sample from. More than 150 dishes will be available for guests, with favorites such as Jellied Eel and Shepherd’s Pie available alongside regional dishes such as Lamb Stew and Welsh Rarebit. Seasonal items like Pumpkin Pasties and British Fudge await those visiting in the fall, while summertime foods include Cornish Pasty and Roast Beef Bites. Guests can also enjoy beverages including Butterbeer, English Beer, Imported Cider, or Specialty Cocktails.
After my trip to London for the day, I had another full day planned. I arrived early in the morning to catch a quick breakfast and realized that just down the street from where I was staying was none other than the famous Harry Potter attraction, Warner Bros. Studio Tour London. Of course, I’d have to check it out before leaving town! Walking through the doors felt like walking into one of my favorite movies as I went on an immersive journey back into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Seeing costumes, props, sets and even animatronics all up close and personal gave me such a feeling of nostalgia that it’s hard to put into words.