The Complete Guide to Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando


The Complete Guide to Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley at Universal Orlando

If you’re planning a trip to Universal Studios, you’re probably wondering which is better: Hogsmeade vs. Diagon Alley. They both have thrilling rides, delicious butterbeer, and wands for every aspiring wizard. But, just like in the books, they are distinctly different. Each park is filled with uniquely tailored theming that brings the the pages of the Harry Potter books to life. So, which Harry Potter world is better? 

If you’re not sure where to start, don’t worry. Our ultimate guide is here to help! Our side-by-side comparison will help even the biggest Potter fan figure out which Harry Potter theme park is best for your vacation.

We hope you find this post helpful! Our goal at The Park Prodigy has always been to help you save time and money on your next Universal Orlando vacation!  If you are planning a trip to Universal Orlando be sure to check out the latest deals on Universal Orlando vacation packages and our discounted Universal Orlando tickets which include EARLY PARK ADMISSION to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter!

SPECIAL NOTE: If you need help picking the best time to visit Universal Orlando for your next vacation be sure to check out our Universal crowd calendar!

 Universal Orlando Crowd Calendar

What Park is Harry Potter World in at Universal 2023?


First, let’s be really clear on the most important question: What park is Harry Potter world in? There are two parks at Universal Orlando: Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. And both of them contain the Wizarding World of Harry Potter! So whichever park you go to, you’ll get to experience the Harry Potter universe. 

What Park is Harry Potter World in?

  • There is a Harry Potter themed section in both parks at Universal Orlando!

What Are the Two Harry Potter Parks to Choose From 2023?

  • Hogsmeade – Islands of Adventure
  • Diagon Alley – Universal Studios

Putting a Wizarding World in both of the Universal Orlando parks makes planning your visit a breeze. The hard part then becomes finding out which Harry Potter park will be best for you! As we continue, let’s go over some determining factors that will help you decide which is better, Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley?

Related Article: Harry Potter Early Park Admission

Harry Potter World: Hogsmeade or Diagon Alley 2023


Before we begin our Harry Potter World comparison, here is a quick overview of the main points that most visitors want to know about. It might be enough to help you decide which park to visit when comparing Hogsmeade Vs Diagon Alley 2023! But if not, don’t worry. We’ve got plenty of other information to help you decide whether to visit Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade.

Which Harry Potter World is Better 2023? – Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley

  • This is hard to answer! We think both parks are amazing and offer completely different experiences. We would say this answer depends on what you value most in your theme park visit.

One of the biggest questions we receive here when deciding if you should visit Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade is, should I visit both parks or just one? And it’s a tough question because although they are both part of the same Potter-verse, they are completely different experiences, with different rides, restaurants, and shops.

Which is Bigger Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley?

  • Both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley were built on about 20 acres of land. But Hogsmeade takes the cake by a few hundred square feet!

Hogsmeade is bigger than Diagon Alley, however we believe it’s more important to focus on which park has the best rides, shows, and restaurants which we will break down below.

Related Post: Complete Guide to Butterbeer at Universal Orlando

Hogsmeade vs. Diagon Alley 2023: Rides


A big part of the fun at Universal is the roller coasters! Unlike Disney or other parks, which mostly focus on family-friendly rides, Universal is known for more thrilling coasters. Not just in the Wizarding World, but all throughout the parks. You can tell there is an emphasis on adrenaline-fueled coasters that speed, flip, and twist. So when comparing Diagon Alley vs. Hogsmeade Universal, it just makes sense to start with the rides. 

What Rides Are at Harry Potter Diagon Alley?

  • Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts
  • Hogwarts Express: Kings Cross Station

Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts 2023

The main Harry Potter ride at Universal Studios Florida is “Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts.” This ride is just beautifully imagined, down to every last detail. If the line is really long, you’ll be waiting outside for a while. But once you get inside, oh my! It’s a breathtaking replica of Gringotts, the bank of the goblins. If you’ve ever wondered – what is Harry Potter world like? – this is it! Every breathtaking detail is perfectly rendered to make you feel like you’ve been transported into the magical world. 

This ride isn’t a roller coaster in the truest sense, however. Most of the time, you are watching 3-D screens that simulate the drops, twists, and turns. And it does take place in the dark, with some close encounters with bad guys, so there is a thrill factor. 

Hogwarts Express: Kings Cross Station 2023

If you have every wanted the true Harry Potter Hogwarts experience, look no further. Board the Hogwarts Express from London’s King Cross Station by walking through the brick wall at Platform 9 3/4! On this journey to Hogsmeade, you will encounter everything from your favorite characters to some trouble some dementors. The only catch with this ride is that you must have a Park to Park Ticket in order to ride. As this ride does transport you from Universal Studios Orlando to Islands of Adventure Park.

Related Post: 7 Best Universal Rides Ranked

What Rides Are at Harry Potter Hogsmeade 2023?

  • Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure
  • Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey
  • Flight of the Hippogriff
  • Hogwarts Express: Hogsmeade Station

Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure – Best Ride at Universal Florida 2023

If you’re going to determine which Harry Potter world is best solely on rides, we’ll point you in the direction of Hagrid’s Motorbike Adventure! Once this ride starts, whoa! On Hagrid’s motorbike or in its sidecar, you’ll twist, turn, drop, and roll onto your side. The 1-mile track makes it the longest coaster in Florida. If you’re an adrenaline junkie, this ride alone could decide the question of which is the best Harry Potter theme park for you.

Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey

Another mostly 3-D ride, Harry, Ron, and Hermione “save you” from a boring lecture about the Defense of the Dark Arts. Madness ensues and you get taken on an adventure through Hogwarts and it’s grounds. The ride is fun, but the really exciting part is entering Hogwarts. It’s a dream come true for any Potter fan, and for many people this alone settles the question of which Harry Potter world is the best. 

Flight of the Hippogriff

For younger riders, or those who prefer a milder ride, the Flight of the Hippogriff is ideal. It’s a bit of a kiddie coaster, but it does go high enough to give you great views of Hogwarts castle. 

Hogwarts Express: Hogsmeade Station

This ride is the same experience to Diagon Alley as it is leaving it. The only additional experience with the trip from Hogsmeade is the depression. Who wants to leave Hogwarts?! We definitely recommend experiencing this ride from Diagon Alley instead of Hogsmeade Station.

Which Has Better Rides When Comparing Hogsmeade Vs Diagon Alley 2023?

  • Hogsmeade – Islands of Adventure

When comparing Harry Potter rides at Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley, our team of Universal travel experts at The Park Prodigy always leans towards Islands of Adventure’s Hogsmeade as the winner with the best rides. Hogsmeade features three attractions, including the most popular attraction in all of Universal Orlando which is Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, while Universal Studios’ Diagon Alley only has one ride. If your primary focus is on the quality and variety of Harry Potter-themed rides, Islands of Adventure and Hogsmeade come out on top.

Related Page: All Harry Potter World Rides Ranked Best to Worst 

Hogsmeade vs. Diagon Alley 2023: Food


In all honesty, the food doesn’t make much of a difference from one Wizarding World to the next. In the Universal Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley debate, dining won’t be too much of a factor. 

What Food Options Are There at Diagon Alley?

  • Leaky Cauldron
  • Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlor
  • Eternelle’s Elixir of Refreshment
  • The Fountain of Fair Fortune
  • The Hopping Pot

Leaky Cauldron

A small pub and inn where, in the books, Harry spent several weeks one summer. This location serves as the main restaurant in Diagon Alley. Offering u quick-service dining options for breakfast, lunch and dinner! The typical fare at The Leaky Cauldron is English favorites. Including Fish & Chips, Bangers & Mash, Cottage Pie, Fisherman’s Pie, Toad in the Hole and Beef, Lamb & Guinness.

Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlor – Best Ice Cream at Universal Orlando 2023

This quaint little ice cream shop along the streets of Diagon Alley serve up a variety of traditional and unique flavors! Here you can enjoy soft serve, hard packed, and sundae style ice creams. Our favorite flavors have to be chocolate chili, Butterbeer soft serve, or the sticky toffy pudding!

Eternelle’s Elixir of Refreshment

At this small beverage kiosk you’ll find a variety of elixirs that, when combined with water, transform before your eyes into unique, colourful, and flavourful beverages. You can choose from Fire Protection Potion, Babbling Beverage, Draught of Peace, and Elixir to Induce Euphoria.

The Fountain of Fair Fortune

Named for one of the fables in The Tales of Beedle the Bard, The Fountain of Fair Fortune serves a variety of beers and other beverages (both alcoholic and non-alcoholic). Non-alcoholic offerings include Butterbeer, Frozen Butterbeer, Pumpkin Juice, Gillywater (bottled water), and more!

The Hopping Pot

Nestled within Carkitt Market is this walk-up counter where you can cool off with a variety of drinks including Butterbeer (regular or frozen, and ice-cream), Pumpkin Juice, Tongue Tying Lemon Squash, Otter’s Fizzy Orange Juice, Peachtree Fizzing Tea, Fishy Green Ale, our Wizard’s Brew and Dragon Scale beers, and more.

What Food Options Are There at Hogsmeade 2023?

  • The Three Broomsticks
  • Hogs Head
  • Honeydukes
  • Butterbeer Kiosks

The Tree Broomsticks – Best Quick-Service Dining at Universal Orlando 2023

This rustic tavern is the place to go in Hogsmeade for good food, friendly conversation, and of course—a Butterbeer. Take a seat and have your fill of tasty British fare including ‘The Great Feast’, Fish And Chips, Shepherd’s Pie, Beef Pasties, Turkey Legs, and fresh vegetables. This quick-service style restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner!

Hogs Head

You may notice the stuffed hog’s head hanging over the bar. Especially if he snarls at you. Don’t be alarmed, though; this pub in the back of the Three Broomsticks is the perfect place for a Butterbeer or Pumpkin Juice, along with domestic and imported beers, the pub’s exclusive Hog’s Head Brew, specialty drinks, wine, spirits, and mixed drinks.


A must-stop for Hogsmeade visitors, the shelves of this legendary sweet shop are lined with all manner of colourful treats including Acid Pops, Exploding Bonbons, Cauldron Cakes, Fizzing Whizzbees, and Chocolate Frogs which contain a wizard trading card in each box. While you’re here, fill up a bag of Bertie Bott’s Every-Flavour Beans!

Butterbeer Kiosks

Hogsmeade has two outdoor Butterbeer carts that serve the cold and frozen versions. There is one right in front of the Three Broomsticks, and the other is next to the bridge that overlooks Hogwarts Castle.

Which Has Better Food When Comparing Hogsmeade Vs Diagon Alley 2023?

  • Diagon Alley – Universal Studios

The Verdict: Diagon Alley wins this round only because of the amount of options you have to choose from! The classic spots are in Hogsmeade, yes, but we also have to give honorable mention to Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes! Not only do they serve trinkets and souvenirs, but most candy that can be found at Honeydukes! But it was a close call, we would say don’t decide which Harry Potter park is better at Universal Studios based on the Harry Potter food!

Related Post: Guide to Every Harry Potter Restaurant

Hogsmeade vs. Diagon Alley 2023: Shopping


No one goes to a theme park just to shop. But once you’re there, it’s hard to say no to a souvenir or four. This is especially true at Universal, with all of its exclusive Harry Potter merchandise! And if you’ve been sorted into a Hogwarts house, you can choose from everything from hoodies to backpacks to school supplies in your colors. 

Is Ollivanders in Hogsmeade 2023?

  • Yes! Ollivanders is in each park so no matter where you decide to visit, you’ll be able to find a wand shop!

But the biggest souvenir, the one that is almost impossible to turn down, is a wand. Especially if the wand has chosen you! That means that you’ll probably want to visit the park that has Ollivanders Wand Shop. Lucky for you, there is an Ollivanders in each of the parks when comparing Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade! Although book purists may be quick to point out that, technically, Ollivanders is only located in Diagon Alley, you’ll find a wand shop at either park. So the Hogsmeade – Diagon Alley debate won’t be decided by a wand!

Other shops, however, do vary. 

What Shops Are at Universal Studio’s Diagon Alley 2023?

  • Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes: Puking Pastilles and other prank items devised by the Weasley twins
  • Gringotts Exchange: Trade U.S. currency for Gringotts bank notes, which can be used in Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade
  • Borgin & Burkes: Death Eater masks and movie replicas
  • Globus Mundi: Passport holders, luggage tags, and other necessities for your magical travels
  • Madame Malkin’s Robes for All Occasions: Clothing and jewelry
  • Magical Menagerie: Plush toys featuring magical creatures, including fan fave Buckbeak
  • Wiseacre’s Wizarding Equipment: Unique house merchandise

What Shops Are at Islands of Adventure’s Hogsmeade 2023?

  • Honeydukes: Exploding BonBons, Chocolate Frogs, and Bertie Botts’ Every Flavour Beans
  • Dervish & Banges: Magical items, broomsticks, and your Hogwarts uniform
  • Filch’s Emporium of Confiscated Goods: Treasures seized by the surly caretaker, plus more
  • Owl Post: Writing equipment and a place to mail letters with a Hogsmeade postmark

Which Has the Best Shops When Comparing Diagon Alley Vs Hogsmeade 2023?

  • Diagon Alley – Universal Studios

The Verdict: As tempted as you may be by the chocolate frogs, there’s really no contest here. When it comes to which Harry Potter park is better at Universal, Diagon Alley in Islands of Adventure is the clear winner. They have more shops, more merchandise, and the fun of trading your money for Gringotts bank notes. Plus, the younger kids will love the stuffed animals at the Magical Menagerie!

Related Post: The Ultimate Tour of Universal’s Diagon Alley

Hogsmeade vs. Diagon Alley 2023: Early Park Admission


Did you know that the Wizarding World of Harry Potter has Early Park Admission to some of the most popular rides? Yep, that’s right you will get into either Hogsmeade or Diagon Alley one hour before regular park guests. But which one is better to use for Early Park Admission?

Which Harry Potter World Park is Better For Early Park Admission 2023?

  • Hogsmeade – Islands of Adventure

When trying to decide between Diagon Alley Vs Hogsmeade for early park admission we are going to look at which park will help you save the most time later on in the day. Because that’s the whole point of using Early Park Admission anyway! Overall we would always lean towards Hogsmeade for early park admission. The main reason is Hogsmeade is home to two of the most popular rides at Universal: Hagrids Magical Motorbike Adventure and Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey. Taking advantage of that extra hour in the morning can save you up to three hours later on in the day!

Special Note: Be sure to check out our Universal Orlando ticket page for all of the latest deals and promotions!

Which Harry Potter Park is Better? – Diagon Alley Vs Hogsmeade 2023


Now that we have covered everything you would want to consider when visiting Hogsmeade vs Diagon Alley, let’s answer the last question which is the best Harry Potter park in Universal Orlando 2023? And our team here at The Park Prodigy believes Hogsmeade is the best Harry Potter park of the two. Hogsmeade features three attractions, including Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure, while Diagon Alley in Universal Studios offers a single ride. Additionally, Hogsmeade boasts the iconic Hogwarts Castle, which houses the immersive Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey attraction. Although Diagon Alley has its unique charms, such as the interactive wand experience and the visually stunning Gringotts Bank, Hogsmeade comes out ahead for its variety of attractions and overall magical atmosphere.

Why did we pick Hogsmeade:

  • Rides – To put it simply, no other ride in Orlando can come close to the experience you receive from Hagrid’s Motorbike Adventure. This ride is worth a trip to Universal alone! 
  • Food – There is nothing like walking into and dining in The Three Broomsticks. The Leaky Cauldron (that’s in London), is fantastically themed. But any true Potter-Head has always dreamed of sipping Butterbeer in Hogsmeade at The Three Broomsticks.
  • Shopping – Although Diagon Alley won this round individually, we really like that the shops are more spread out in Hogsmeade. It gives a better shopping experience in our opinion.
  • Overall Experience – Who could turn down the chance to actually walk into Hogwarts Castle? The fact that there’s a really great ride inside just makes it even more fun. 

We hope our Harry Potter World comparison helps you decide which Harry Potter theme park is best. They are both excellent parks and you will have fun wherever you go, but in our opinion, Hogsmeade is the clear winner!

Related Post: The Ultimate Comparison of Universal Orlando Resort Premier Hotels

Hogsmeade Vs Diagon Alley 2023 FAQ


Q: Should I go to Hogsmeade or Diagon Alley First?

A: Now that we have discussed the best Harry Potter park, you might be wondering should I go to Hogsmeade or Diagon Alley first? And as a general rule of thumb we always suggest visiting Hogsmeade in Islands of Adventure first. This is especially true when using early park admission as the wait times for Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure and Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey will always be longer than the Escape from Gringotts later in the day.

Q: Which Park is Hogwarts Castle in?

A: Another common question we receive is, which park at Universal Orlando has Hogwarts castle? And Hogwarts castle would be at Islands of Adventure which is Hogsmeade. There’s even a ride that takes place inside Hogwarts castle, so you’ll actually be able to enter the hallowed halls of Harry’s alma mater.

Q: Where is Hogsmeade Located in Universal?

A: Islands of Adventure. Same as Hagrid’s Motorbike AND the Hogwarts Castle.

Q: Is Diagon Alley in Islands of Adventure?

A: No. If you’re eager to explore Diagon Alley, Universal Studios is your park!

Q: Is Harry Potter World in Disney?

A: No! The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is located outside of the Walt Disney World Resort at the Universal Orlando Resort in Florida. 

Q: How Long is Hagrid’s Magical Motorbike Adventure?

A: This state of the art coaster has a 1-mile long track! This makes it the longest coaster track in all of Florida. The run time of this ride is usually 3 min and has you traveling up to 50mph!

Q: Where is The Three Broomsticks Located?

A: Near the main entrance of Hogsmeade on your left next to Honeydukes! 

Q: Where Can You Buy a Wand in Harry Potter World Orlando?

A: There are a few kiosks scattered around both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. But if you want the true experience, head to Ollivander’s Wand Shop in both parks for a one of a kind wand buying experience. 

And here’s some good news: both parks serve Butterbeer! If tasting Harry’s favorite drink is high on your list, you’ll be able to buy one at either park. And it’s non-alcoholic, so the kids can try it, too.

When Is The Best Time To Visit Universal Orlando?

Our Universal Orlando Crowd Calendar is the best tool to help you get the most out of your time in the parks. We breakdown the park crowds, park hours of operation, ticket prices by day, and average temperature.

Are You Ready to Plan Your Next Universal Orlando Trip?

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Michael Belmont

Michael Belmont is the owner and chief editor at, an authorized Disney and Universal travel agent. He specializes in Disney and Universal theme park tickets and vacation packages, as well as daily park plans to help optimize vacation time. Michael and The Park Prodigy have been featured on ABC’s Florida affiliate, WTFV, as well as over 10 Disney focused blogs. As owner, Michael manages The Park Prodigy blog and social media, a Disney themed podcast, and a Disney and Universal focused YouTube channel. Prior to starting The Park Prodigy, Michael was a long time Disney and Universal enthusiast, frequent visitor of the parks, and even served as a Walt Disney World Cast Member in Orlando, Florida!