Celebrating Harry Potter. Celebrating JK Rowling.

Casual Vacancy or not, JK Rowling is a name that will always stay attached to the cult that was created with Harry Potter. A magic series like no other, Harry Potter catapulted JK Rowling to the heights of literary imagination. Hailed by some as a Wiccan (even a witch), JK Rowling is a name that would find no comparison, ever.


As this word magician turns 49, here’s celebrating her flight of fantasy with an itinerary that would be a wishlist of every Harry Potter fan. 


Alnwick Castle, Northumberland
Be it the first Quidditch lesson at the Hogwarts or the induction ceremony of the freshers, the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry would never be forgotten. More so, for it was shot at Alnwick Castle.


Christ Church, Oxford 

This is the closest that you can ever be to those fine spreads of meals at Hogwarts’ Great Hall. While you might not bump into Nearly Headless Nick here, this place is still going to make you hit the nostalgia mode.


The Jacobite, Scotland

Photo Courtesy – Daily Mail

The only way to hop on to the fantasy Hogwarts Express that resulted from JK Rowling’s imagination is to get aboard the Jacobite. This steam locomotive takes the same meandering route to your heart that the Hogwarts Express took!


Gloucester Cathedral, England

The most ardent fans would know this sight well, for this is where Mrs Norris, the cat, was found (almost) dead in the Chamber of Secrets. A haunting site, the first declaration of Voldemort’s coming back, this corridor would still give you the creeps. Almost magical you see.


King’s Cross Railway Station, London

Photo – weekendnotes.co.uk

Oh yes, this is exactly how it looks, Platform 9¾. A trolley that is half carved into the wall as a dedication to the Harry Potter cult, it’s one of the most famous stopovers for the Harry Potter fans. 


Lacock Abbey, England

This stretch of the Lacock Abbey is the place where we heard the Basilisk for the first time. Perhaps the spookiest of the whole lot, Lacock Abbey was the stage for some of the more scary sights in the Harry Potter movies. 


Market Porter Pub and the adjoining lanes, London

Photo Courtesy – londonunveiled

Made more famous by the filming of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azakaban, this pub is a must visit for fans as well as ale lovers. The nearby lanes were extensively used in the market scenes when Harry went shopping in the movie installments.


Reptile House, London Zoo

Photo Courtesy- zoochat.com


Harry’s first (though unintended) magic trick in the public which also had him talking to a Burmese python in the first movie was shot. While Dudley landed in quite some mess here, you are sure to have a fan’s day out. 


Steall Waterfall, Scotland


Remember the falls where Harry battled the dragon for the egg in the Triwizard Tournament? Well, Steal Waterfall is the magic place that saw the battle happening. 


Leaving you there, right by the waterfalls, I’ll scoot away to get a JK Rowling birthday cake. Oh yes, almost every baker in the town is baking those! Expecto Patronum! 


About the author

Shikha Gautam loves to play with steering wheels, roads, words, flute and guitar among other things. Not necessarily in that order! You can contact her on twitter @ShikhaGautam