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With the Harry Potter book series all squared away and only two movies left to be seen - there seemed to be little to look forward to, for fans of the young wizard - Until now. Last week, Universal Studios, Orlando unveiled plans of their upcoming attraction - 'The Wizarding World of Harry Potter'
Scheduled to open in April 2010, the 20-acre park is being designed to ensure that visitors experience Harry Potter's life to the fullest, starting with the entrance, which will resemble the Hogsmeade railway station - the final destination of the Hogwart's Express. Visitors 'disembarking' will be treated to a plume of smoke and an authentic sounding train whistle.
Once the smoke clears, fans will be able enter the park which among other things, will feature Hogsmeade Village, The Forbidden Forest and of course Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
Each area will be as similar to the books as possible. At the Hogsmeade Village, guests will be able to visit 'Ollivanders' wand shop and be 'picked' by the right wand, purchase magical equipment including Quidditch brooms at Dervish and Banges or visit the Owl post, from where they can send letters with a certified 'Hogsmeade' postmark.
And of course, the village would not be complete without 'Honey Dukes, - the candy store that will stock not only 'Bertie Bott's every-flavor beans, but also those yummy sounding chocolate frogs that Potter devours!
The Forbidden Forest will feature a number of rides including a family roller coaster, dubbed 'Flight of the Hippograf' and a high-speed adventure roller coaster called 'Dragons Challenge' based on the Triwazarding tournament.
Inside the Hogwarts castle, visitors will be able to hitch onto a ride called 'Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey', which will take them through the scenes and rooms from all the Harry Potter movies. Weary visitors will be invited to put their feet up at The Owlery or grab a bite to eat at the Three Broomsticks, which will also be serving 'butterbeer'
While J.K. Rowling has not seen the theme park yet, she has been closely involved with the design to ensure that it embodiesthe spirit of the magical world she created. Judging from what we have read, we believe she has nothing to worry about. Now if only Harry and his friends were going to be at the park too! To read more details go to: www.universalorlando.com/harrypotter
sources: telegraph.co.uk, usatoday.com. dailymail.co.uk