Florida Adventures + Harry Potter World!

Man, winter in Florida is awesome.


On Saturday before Meghann’s wedding, Matt and I originally talked about hitting up the Kennedy Space Center, but unfortunately realized we didn’t have enough time – apparently it’s an all day thing and we only had a few hours. So instead, we explored the nearby area! It was a beautiful day so it ended up working out.



After exploring, we headed to Crackerjacks Seafood & Tiki Bar (recommended by Meghann & Derek in their guest wedding bag welcome letter) for a late lunch. How about this view, huh?


I ordered the fish tacos with a side salad.


They were AMAZING. I <3 fish tacos.


On Sunday, Matt and I didn’t fly out of Orlando until 9 p.m., so we decided an adventure was in order. Harry Potter World was a go. :) Thanks for all the reviews/recommendations! Unfortunately we were moving a little slow after the wedding festivities, so we didn’t get there early, but we still had plenty of time to enjoy the park. We arrived around 11:30 a.m. and bought a ticket for Islands of Adventure (where Harry Potter World is)!





Our first stop in the park was a quick lunch, and then it was straight to Hogsmeade. :)




The park was packed but it was still really cool to walk through Hogsmeade. They did a great job making it true to the books! Loved all the cool shops.


Look, extendable ears!


And every flavour beans!




The Hogwarts Express was there, too. :)


We decided against going in the wand shop since there was a big line and you guys said it wasn’t really worth it, so from there it was on to the main event – Hogwarts and the ride inside it!






While waiting for the ride, you get to walk through the castle. So cool! Again, great job making it like the movies. I especially loved this wall of photos – they all moved/talked, too! We also walked through Dumbledore’s office and one of the classrooms, where there were cool holographic image videos of the actual characters talking to us. Guess they filmed it specially for this park!


The ride inside the castle was AWESOME. They used a mix of movement through the castle/real stuff and really realistic videos that had you feeling like you were actually riding on a broomstick with Harry and running from dementors. Matt and I actually came back later and rode it again (that time, we hit up the single rider line – awesome tip from you all – and were on in a flash AND still got to ride together!) since it was so fun!

Of course, we also got Butterbeer. :) Matt and I shared one and we opted for frozen – it tasted like a melted Werther’s Original! VERY sweet but tasty. :)


It really did look like a beer – the “foam” on top was actual some sort of sugar!


The rest of the day was filled with the other rides in the park. We rode pretty much everything, including all the water rides (thankfully we had a change of clothes in the car because going on a plane soaked would not have been fun), and left just before the park closed around 6:30 to head for the airport.


What a fun day! :)

Do you like amusement parks? I love them – especially water parks!

p.s. Thank you so much to everyone who entered my Wasa giveaway! I randomly selected a winner and sent their contact info to Wasa, so if it’s you, you’ll hear from them!


  1. 1

    How fun!! I’ve heard the butterbeer is tasty. It’d be fun for a party, like Gretchen threw.

  2. 2

    Harry Potter World looks so awesome!! I live here, and I STILL haven’t been. I need to change that!

  3. 3

    I MUST go to Harry Potter world! How FUN! :)

  4. 4

    I neeeeeed to go to HP land. It is the stuff of my dreams! Looks like you had a great time!

  5. 5

    Look like a really fun time! I am trying to get my family to go to Orlando soon!!

  6. 6

    So fun..I can’t wait to go there. Thanks for all the pictures!!!!

  7. 7

    I love amusement parks, especially when they’re done up right and apparantly this one is. I really want to take my kiddos there this year!

  8. 8

    this just majorly reinforced my desire to go to the HP park. i’ve been wanting to go since i was in high school (i’m a 1st year undergrad student right now!) and am determined to make it happen before i graduate college, even if it is all the way across the country!

  9. 9

    I’ve always wanted to go to Harry Potter World… it’s just on the other side of the country. Personally, I’d choose it over the space museum every day of the week. :-)

  10. 10

    Ahh I went to the Harry Potter park two years ago and LOVED it! It was so much fun, the Hogwartz ride was great. We actually lucked out and had very few lines (the week after Thanksgiving, random awesome week to go). I really didn’t like the butterbeer though, I thought it was too buttery/sweet.

  11. 12

    I LOVED Harry Potter world… the ride inside the castle though did make me a bit nauseous, which is strange because rides never seem to be a problem for me.

  12. 13

    I love amusement parks! Universal in Florida is one of the best; not that I’ve been to all that many, we don’t have any in Ireland!!!

  13. 14
    Healthy Eater says

    You two have more fun than any other there couples! Well done! (And looking forward now to the girl on the flying trapeze post!)

  14. 15

    That looks so fun, I really want to go! I went on the Harry Potter Studio tour just outside London a couple of months ago, so fun to see the actual sets- you can have a look at my pics to compare the real great hall and the hogwarts set…

  15. 16

    I love amusement parks! I’m actually headed to Disney in February for the Princess Half and I can’t wait!

  16. 17

    I’m going to Disney in February and really hoping to squeeze in some HP fun. I keep hearing such good things about it!

  17. 18

    Did the birds try to eat your food? I once saw a full-grown man fight off a flock of seagulls for a plate of French fries. Also, Orlando looks so sunny gorgeous!

  18. 20

    I’m so glad you went to Islands of Adventure! My hubby and I loved celebrating our one year anniversary there. We also really liked the Dragon rollercoaster in HP World. Short but fast!

  19. 22

    Great photos….glad you went!

  20. 23

    Looks fun! And great beach/sun photos…I’m gearing up for another cold, grey day so it’s always good to see reminders of sun!

  21. 24

    This looks like a fun day!! I haven’t been to Islands of Adventure in the past 4 years and I live less than an hour away! Shame on me :) I love the east coast of FL and lately have spent more weekends over there than I have here in Tampa. Next time you’re down – and in the Satellite Beach/Melbourne area. Definitely try Da Kine Diego’s burritos. Get the spicy carrots – you will be floored.

  22. 25

    I was JUST at Universal for New Years week and LOVED Harry Potter World as well :-) So fascinating to see it in real life–glad you got the butter beer, the frozen was better than the regular kind in my opinion!

  23. 26

    I was just in Universal in November.. Harry potter world was THE BEST and butterbeer was SOOOOOOO GOOD!

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