Tag Archives: Harry Potter

Trivia Questions for Facetime Trivia Night!

Skype Trivia

If you are sitting at home bored in isolation I highly recommend throwing a virtual trivia night with friends and/or family. This has become the thing we look forward to each week as we wait for life to return to normality and has been so great for lifting the spirits!

If you’re long distance it can also be a great 2-player game to play with your significant otter 😉

Below is a list we came up with of general fact, geography, food, funny, film and tv, and 90’s pub quiz questions – perfect to use for a Facetime or Skype trivia night with friends during lockdown (or anytime!).

You may notice we especially love Big Bang Theory, Harry Potter, Inbetweeners and food! There are also many Canadian and UK-themed questions as we were playing with friends from both places. The great thing is you can find or create questions to suit those playing so feel free to use our quizzes or use some for inspiration in creating your own!

*FaceTime and Skype each allow you to have video with 6 people at a time. WhatsApp allows 4. FaceTime also allows up to 50 people on a call (without video enabled) and has worked really well for us. This is the most fun we’ve had in isolation – it’s been such a good laugh and I hope it will be for you too.

Try it!

TRIVIA QUIZ 1

1. What is used to flavour Earl Grey tea? A: Bergamot
2. Which 2007 Hollywood film (the 3rd in its series) was the most expensive ever made? A: Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End
3. Which UK food brand has not changed its packaging since 1881? A: Lyle’s (golden syrup)
4. Which country eats the most pizza (per person ratio)? A: Norway
5. The highest grossing painting ever sold was called ‘Salvador Mundi’ – who painted it? A: Picasso
6. Which small black and white mammal known to Africa, Asia and India doesn’t give a damn? A: Honey badger
7. Who is the richest person in the world and what company do they own? A: Jeff Bezos – Amazon
8. Which character was the first to go missing on ‘Stranger Things’? A: Will
9. What was the first team to ever win the FA cup? A: Wanderers
10. What spell does Harry cast on Draco in Moaning Myrtle’s bathroom in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince? A: Sectum Sempra
11. What is the highest rated film on IMdB? A: The Godfather
12. What is the most expensive herb to buy? A: Saffron
13. Which country celebrates the ‘Monkey Buffet Festival’ which includes giving fruit and vegetables to the local monkey population? A: Thailand
14. Which country has the highest number of female doctors? A: Finland
15. What is the hottest pepper in the world in Scoville Units? A: The Carolina Reaper
16. How many wives did King Henry the 8th have? A: 6
17. Which Bond actor suited up as a Stormtrooper for the Star Wars film ‘The Force Awakens’? A: Daniel Craig
18. What does the computer tech term ‘CPU’ stand for? A: Central Processing Unit
19. Nanaimo bars – a chocolate, custard and coconut tray bake – are named after Nanaimo in which Canadian province? A: British Colombia
20. What swims 1/8th of an inch per hour? A: Sperm
21. Who wrote Winnie the Pooh? A: A.A. Milne
22. Which famous person has been likened to the North American snack of ‘Cheetos’ and is sometimes referred to as a ‘man baby’? A: Donald Trump
23. What sport has been played on the moon? A: Golf
24. “You go Glen Coco!” is a quote from which teen movie? A: Mean Girls
25. What is the longest running tv series in the world? A: The Simpsons
26. ‘Heroes in a half shell’ is the tagline for what 80s/90s tv series? A: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
27. The French ‘Coq au Vin’ translates to what culinary dish? A: chicken in wine
28. What is the main ingredient in gin? A: Juniper berries
29. What food chain has the most locations globally with 42,998 locations? A: Subway
30. What is the most sexually active nation in the world? A: Greece
31. What is ‘Lord Hereford’s Knob’? A: A mountain (in Wales)
32. Which actress appeared in Love Actually, Pride & Prejudice and The Duchess? A: Kiera Knightley
33. What was the name of Ed Sheeran’s first single released in 2011? A: The A Team
34. Since the 70s what food is generally eaten in Japan on Christmas Day? A: KFC
35. What does the word ‘Brobdingnagian’ mean? A: large, big, enormous etc,.
36. What Inbetweeners character says: ‘I thought it was a fart sir!’ A: Will
37. In which country did the Michelin Star rating system originate? A: France
38. ‘Takeout woman’ could be considered the opposite name of which classic arcade game? A: Pac Man
39. What is the main ingredient in a frittata? A: Eggs
40: Doc Brown is a character from what iconic 80s film? A: Back to the Future

TRIVIA QUIZ 2

1. Who was the first person to swim the English Channel? A: Captain Matthew Webb
2. In what year was the first Harry Potter film released? A: 2001
3. In what country do they hold a tomato food fight in the streets every August? A: Spain
4. What hugely popular 90s toy involved cleaning up virtual poo? A: Tamagotchi
5. George Bailey is the main character of which classic Christmas film released in 1946? A: It’s A Wonderful Life
6. Which pancake-like relative of the shark could be described as a ‘majestic sea flaf flap?’ A: Stingray
7. What is the most common flavour of pie served at Canadian Thanksgiving? A: Pumpkin Pie
8. What is the next word in this line from the 2001 movie Shrek – ‘Please don’t stand on the grass, wipe your shoes, wipe your _______ ?’ A: Face
9. What is the name of the ancient network of trade routes established during the Han Dynasty between 130 BCE and 1453 CE? A: The Silk Road
10. The most expensive commercial ever made was a 2004 commercial featuring Nicole Kidman and cost 33 million. What product was it advertising? A: Perfume (Chanel No. 5)
11. An orchidometer is a medical instrument used to measure what part of the body? A: Testicles
12. What does the tech/photography term JPEG stand for? A: Joint photographic experts group
13. In 2018 which country launched the most vegan products, knocking Germany out of the top spot? A: United Kingdom
15. Which Inbetweeners character tells Will he won’t be known as ‘briefcase mong’ anymore but will be known as ‘The Lion, The Witch and Speccy Kid who Shit Himself.’? A: Jay
16. ‘Tagine’ refers to both a type of stew and a cooking vessel in which country? A: Morocco
17. Who was the first female pilot to fly across the Atlantic ocean? A: Amelia Earhart
18. In what city did Philly Cheesesteak sandwiches originate? A: Philadelphia, USA
19. What are the names of 3 of the 5 D-Day beaches? A: Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, Sword
20. What is the smallest bird species in the world? A: Hummingbird
21. Which Star Wars character famously shouted ‘It’s A Trap!’? A: Admiral Ackbar
22. Which football player has scored the most goals in the English Premier League? A: Alan Shearer
23. Who was the first president of the United States? A: George Washington
24. Which chocolate confection has the provocative trademarked tagline: ‘Melts in your mouth, not in your hand.’? A: M&M’s
25. In January 2018 one of the many slang words added into the Oxford English Dictionary includes a word which crosses something found in a baby’s diaper with a violent weather event – what is the slang word? A: Poonami
26. What is the only animal in the world where the male gives birth? A: Seahorse
27. The tradition of afternoon tea was introduced by the Duchess of which British place? A: Duchess of Bedford
28. What does Harry Potter say when travelling by floo powder for the first time after Mrs. Weasley instructs him to ‘speak very clearly?’ A: Diagonally
29. The first hot air balloon flight launched from which city? A: Paris, France
30. What was the first animated film ever released by Disney? A: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
31. Who wrote Moby Dick? A: Herman Melville
32. This species of penguin is known for its striking blue eyes and though it is one of the smallest breeds of penguins is known to be the most fearless – basically, who is the Chuck Norris of penguins? A: Adelie
33. Which country exports the most coffee? A: Brazil
34. What movie is the following quote from: ‘I’m sorry I ruined your lives and crammed 11 cookies into the VCR’? A: Elf
35. What are the last names of all 4 of the main male Big Bang Theory characters? A: Raj Koothrapali, Howard Wolowitz, Leonard Hofstadder, Sheldon Cooper
36. What is the name of the region of the North Atlantic where a number of ships and aircraft have disappeared? A: The Bermuda Triangle
37. Finish this Lord of the Rings quote: ‘One ring to rule them all, one ring to find them, one ring to bring them all and _______________? A: In the darkness bind them
38. Can you name 1 of the 2 countries in the world where you will NOT find Coca-Cola? A: Cuba, North Korea
39. Canadian author Lucy Maud Montgomery wrote which famous series of books for kids which features an orphan girl? A: Anne of Green Gables
40. This animal features in a 1953 Christmas song and while its name is derived from the Greek word for ‘river horse’ a more apt description might be ‘angry river cow’ – what animal is it? A: Hippopotamus

TRIVIA QUIZ 3

1. What is the tallest mountain in the UK? A: Ben Nevis
2. Which British politician said “Champagne should be dry, cold and free?” A: Winston Churchill
3. The Taj Mahal is a mausoleum in which Indian city? A: Agra
4. Ben & Jerry’s flavour ‘Bourbon Pecan Pie’ can only be purchased in which US state? A: Texas
5. Which ancient civilisation used the symbol of winged penises to ward off sickness? A: The Romans
6. What is the tallest species of penguin? A: Emperor Penguin
7. Which Inbetweeners character says “There is nothing funny about testicles.”? A: Mr. Gilbert
8. In what country was the Lord of the Rings trilogy filmed? A: New Zealand
9. The writer Darles Chickens was born in what UK port city? A: Portsmouth
10. ‘Dhaka’ is known as the ‘city of mosques’ and is the capital city of which country? A: Bangladesh
11. What is the most popular Dominoes pizza topping in both the UK and USA? A: Pepperoni
12. Star Wars character Mace Windu wields a lightsabre of which colour? A: purple
13. Which Big Bang Theory character says “the robot hand got stuck on your what?” A: Leonard
14. What is the name of the deepest place on Earth located in the South Pacific Ocean and measuring 11,000 meters deep? A: The Mariana Trench
15. In what country was the famed Titanic built? *Bonus point for the city* A: Belfast, Ireland
16. What is the deadliest creature to humans killing approximately 725,000 people per year? A: mosquitos
17. Which London Bridge is destroyed by death eaters in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince? A: Millennium Bridge
18. Which museum is the most visited in the world with over 8 million visitors per year? A: The Louvre
19. The natural reflex in babies to fan their toes out when the bottom of the foot is stroked is known as what? A: The Babinski Reflex (or Plantar Reflex)
20. What are a group of lions called? A: A pride
21. How many characters does Mike Myers play in the Austin Powers films? A: 4 (Austin, Dr. Evil, Fat B*stard & Goldmemeber)
22. What plant does Harry Potter eat to allow him to breathe under water in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire? A: Gillyweed
23. What is the name of the round, colourful cardboard disks which were wildly popular with 90’s kids? A: Pogs
24. Which one-hit-wonder band released the song “Jump Around” in 1989? A: House of Pain
25. In Star Wars Episode 1 Anakin Skywalker is discovered working for Watto as a slave on what planet? A: Tatooine
26. What is the highest-selling chocolate bar in the United Kingdom? A: Cadbury’s Dairy Milk
27. In what country did the legend of the Easter bunny originate? A: Germany
28. Who wrote “To Kill A Mockingbird”? A: Harper Lee
29. ‘Bulgogi’ is a dish of thinly-sliced, marinated stir-fried beef or pork (usually served over rice) which originated in which country? A: Korea
30. This circular, stringed instrument is heard most often in country music; Taylor Swift plays one in the video for her song ‘Mean’ – which instrument is it? A: Banjo
31. What is the name of the South Carolina fort where the first shot of the civil war took place? A: Fort Sumpter
32. What was the first ever flavoured potato chip flavour? A: Barbeque
33. What are the 3 things that don’t impress Shania Twain much (in her 1998 hit ‘That Don’t Impress Me Much’)? *1 point for each* A: rocket scientist, Brad Pitt, having a car
34. Which Canadian hockey player legend has scored the most goals ever with 894? A: Wayne Gretzky
35. Which popular beer brand promised and delivered a free beer to every British soldier of WW2 the Christmas of 1939, and was also one of the first brands to introduce employee benefits such as medical, dental, pensions and 2 free beers per week? A: Guinness
36. What does the computer term ‘RAM’ stand for? A: Random Access Memory
37. Ornithology is the study of what? A: Birds
38. What is the name of the popular tourist road in the USA which takes you through small, scenic towns from the state of New Mexico to Missouri? A: Route 66
39. ‘Dump,’ ‘floater’ and ‘wipe’ are techniques used in what team sport? A: Water Polo
40. Which Big Bang Theory character, after being asked what beverage they have served, says “There was a single cube of chicken bouillon in the cupboard when we moved in and it’s been bugging me for 8 years.” A: Sheldon

TRIVIA QUIZ 4

1. What is the busiest holiday for Dominoes pizza delivery? A: New Years Eve
2. ‘Peshwari’ naan is an Indian oven-baked flatbread of what flavour? A: Coconut
3. Which Forrest Gump character says this iconic quote: “Anyway, like I was sayin’, shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it. Dey’s uh, shrimp-kabobs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo. Pan fried, deep fried, stir-fried. There’s pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich. That- that’s about it.” A: ‘Bubba’ (Benjamin Buford Blue)
4. What is the longest bone in the body? A: Femur
5. What is the most popular doughnut flavour in America? A: Glazed
6. Bali is known for its volcanic mountains, Yoga retreats and rice paddies and is actually made up of 3 islands belonging to which country? A: Indonesia
7. The Titanic had 2 sister ships with identical passenger facilities, one of which went on to be used as a troop ship during WW1. What are the names of the two sister ships? A: HMHS Britannic, RMS Olympic
8. Which bounty hunter captures Han Solo in Star Wars Episode 5: The Empire Strikes Back? A: Boba Fett
9. British Swallows migrate to what country for the winter? A: South Africa
10. ‘Spotted dick’ is a British pudding (dessert) made of suet and what? A: Dried fruit
11. ‘Wiarton Willy’ is a famous Canadian mammal – what type of animal is he and what is he famous for? A: Groundhog, his shadow
12. This spice is a type of seed (but can be ground) which originated in Iran and the Mediterranean and is the most-consumed spice in the world – which spice is it? A: Cumin
13. This fortified steel and concrete structure holds a large portion of the U.S.’s gold and sits within a Kentucky army base – what is it called? A: Fort Knox
14. In Harry Potter what is the name of Hagrid’s former pet spider who lives in the Forbidden Forest? A: Aragog
15. Which keyboard letter do you press alongside ‘Ctrl’ to undo an action? A: Letter ‘Z’
16. The U.K. football teams ‘Harts’ and ‘Hibbs’ both come from which Scottish city? A: Edinburgh
17. What is the most popular Ben & Jerry’s ice cream flavour? A: Cookie Dough
18. Which Disney re-make was the highest grossing movie of 2017? A: Beauty and the Beast
19. What are a group of Ravens called? A: An unkindness
20. What was the name of the woman who began the suffragette movement in Britain, founding the WSPU in 1903? A: Emmeline Pankhurst
21. Teabags were created by accident in 1908 in the United States and were originally made of what material? A: Silk
22. ‘Shrove Tuesday’ is another name for which holiday? A: Pancake Day
23. What spell is used in Harry Potter to disarm an opponent – usually of their wand? A: Expelliarmus
24. What is the full name of the Canadian NHL hockey team for Montreal? A: Montreal Canadiens
25. Black Beauty was written in 1877 by which English author? A: Anna Sewell
26. In 1991 ‘Right Said Fred’ released the hit song ‘I’m Too Sexy’ – name as many things as you can that the singer is ‘too sexy’ for. *1/2 point for each* A: His love, his shirt, Milan, New York, Japan, your party, his car, his hat, this song
27. What is an ampersand? A: The ‘&’ sign
28. Which mythological creature is said to inhabit the Scottish Highlands? A: Lochness Monster
29. What is the highest grossing Broadway musical with a net of over 1.6 billion? A: The Lion King
30. How many calories (under 10) are in 1 gram of alcohol? A: 7
31. This dog breed also refers to a cocktail made with vodka and grapefruit juice – what is it called? A: Greyhound
32. What are the names used to refer to the extra-terrestrial, robotic ‘good guys’ and ‘bad guys’ in the Transformers movies? A: Autobots and Decepticons
33. Who led the Scottish army to victory over the English at the battle of Bannockburn in 1314? A: Robert the Bruce
34. A young woman in the 1920’s who behaved and dressed boldly was called what? A: A flapper
35. What is the name of Dustin’s pet from the upside-down in ‘Stranger Things’? A: D’Artagnon (Dart for short)
36. Who painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican? A: Michaelangelo
37. What is the fastest flying bird in the world able to dive at almost 200 miles per hour and can be found on every continent except Antarctica? A: Peregrine Falcon
38. Which Inbetweeners character describes ‘caravaning’ as ‘a sense of shitting in a bucket in a cupboard you don’t get with other holidays’? A: Will
39. This cooking toy which used a lightbulb to cook processed food bought in packets at Toys R Us was lusted after by many a 90s kid – what was it called? A: Easy Bake Oven
40. In her 2012 song Katy Perry ‘has heard it’s beautiful’ and wants to see your what? A: Peacock

How have you all been staying sane? 🙂

 

 

 

Expat Life Lately: Pumpkins & Autumn Recipes

Now it’s beginning to feel a bit like Christmas I thought it would be a perfect time to say farewell to those spectacular fall days and to recap some of our best memories from a magical autumn which has been spent playing boardgames, snuggling, cooking, exploring and of course, drinking cups of tea.

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As we’re now living in Kent with good train links to London we’ve been making up for lost time with my favourite city and it has been glorious this autumn.

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We caught a country music concert at Borderline, meeting one of my idols Cassadee Pope and happened to also catch the changing of the guards.

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We’ve had a few new recipes keeping us cozy this autumn season. Among some of our favourites were Squash, Beetroot & Halloumi salad and Tortellini Soup. Delish!

Fall on a plate… Squash, Beetroot & Halloumi Salad Recipe

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Tortellini soup. Total heaven! If you love Italian flavours you will fall in love. I omit the meatballs and add a potato and 2-3 carrots and a good bunch of fresh parsley chopped. Best Tortellini Soup Recipe

Oh how I’ve missed going to the Pick-Your-Own pumpkin farms back in Canada but this year we found a gem just down the road. My better half said he’d never seen anything like it. The autumn spirit is strong down here in Kent!

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And when I was told that our road gets hundreds of trick or treaters I just had to go all-out with a DIY Harry Potter inspired haunted house. We must have had well over 200 children and ran out of sweets 3 times!

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I also finally got a Gryffindor robe. Can’t wait to wear it everywhere!

After such a colourful, snuggly and magical autumn I can’t wait to see what this festive Christmas season has in store! Time to replace my window of pumpkins for some Christmas garlands 🙂

What is your favourite recipe for cold nights?

x

 

Expat Life Lately: Autumn & Rustic Decorating

Even with the unseasonably warm days, the cooler nights and raining leaves have brought with them the promise of autumn. That cozy transition between summer sun and snowflakes -made for leather boots, scarves, hot drinks and cuddles- is my favourite time of year.

While the colours might not be quite as bright as a proper Canadian fall I’m definitely seeing some pops of autumn around me especially last week when we visited the Hampton Court gardens for a screening of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.

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The cool evening was a perfect excuse to snuggle under the stars – as if I need an excuse to squeeze up next to this handsome fellow 😉

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We also took a jolly little jaunt to Canterbury; a city neither of us have ever visited before. Besides the beautiful (though scaffolded) cathedral, cobbled streets and tea shops I was excited to find so many candy stores with Halloween looming.

I was doubly excited to find a pumpkin spice cookie at a market in Canterbury which was the pie on top of our thanksgiving weekend.

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We’ve also been in a new rented house for just over 2 very busy months. While there is still a long to-do list we have accomplished a good amount in a relatively short time and the place is beginning to look somewhat like a home.

We’ve taken our bookcase out of storage which I’ve filled with our trinkets and board games. I love my two autumn pumpkins I brought over in my suitcase from Home Sense in Canada which make a seasonal appearance.

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As we had too many dvd’s to fit in our tv unit I ordered this quatrefoil box to disguise them and it matches beautifully with our pillow from Next.

Quatrefoil Storage Tote

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Since our coffee table was taking up the whole of our very tiny living room we picked up a much smaller second-hand coffee table and because it didn’t have drawers I found this adorable hessian bag to put all our odds & ends in.

Hessian Etc. Tote

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I also needed some apple crates for decoration for our wedding next year as well as for the Halloween Harry Potter display I’m planning. Rather than stuff them in our already-over-stuffed shed I used 2 of them to make a shoe rack and the other four I stacked for a shelf in our spare bedroom.

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While our downstairs is rustic our upstairs is decidedly nautical. I am a huge fan of the seaside so I could hardly pass up this lovely little sailboat for £5 at a gift shop. The fact it lights up just makes it that much more enchanting. They are also available for the same price at the Range.

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Have you spotted any signs of autumn? What is your favourite season and why?

Cheerio eh!

Harry Potter at Rochester Castle – Luna Cinema

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I’ve been missing my North American drive-ins since I swapped Canada for England 3 years ago but this past summer I stumbled upon Luna Cinema; a company that organizes outdoor cinema at various tourist stops around the UK in spring, summer and fall.

I soon found a venue near me -Rochester Castle, Kent- and lo and behold they were showing Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets! I booked those tickets faster than you could say Quidditch.

Luna Cinema Review

Pros:
1. Watching Harry Potter in a castle = amazing
2. Ample room to sprawl out on the lawn at the front or book/bring your own chair
3. View and sound were good
4. Allowed to bring own snacks/drinks (just no glass)
5. Allowed to bring blankets, pillows, snuggly items
6. Food and drinks available for purchase

Cons:
1. The show will go on in all weather – if sitting in the pouring rain isn’t your idea of fun then it’s likely you’ll be out-of-pocket if the weather doesn’t work in your favour
2. Running out of stuff: they ran out of popcorn and you sometimes had to wait or come back for hot drinks as they kept running out of hot water.

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How To Prepare For an Outdoor Movie:
1. Waterproof – Make sure to bring something waterproof (like a tarp, sleeping bag, painting sheet ect,.) to lay down on the grass. It will be damp, dewy and wet.
2. Something to sit on – Make sure to put something on top of your waterproof layer to sit/lay on as sitting straight on the waterproof will still be really cold.
3. Layers – Wear lots of layers and bring more with you.
4. Blankets – No matter what the season it will be cold at night; bring blankets! We brought one and it wasn’t enough. Double-up! Even bring the duvet.
4. Pillows – This is what separates the noobs from the legends. We were noobs. Bring as many as you can carry and make a warm, squishy little nest. I was seriously jealous of the two girls in front of us who had full body pillows – clearly they’d done this before.
5. Snacks/drinks – Before you leave make sure to pack your popcorn, candy or even a picnic and don’t forget a sealed cold drink plus I would highly recommend a thermos of something hot. As there’s no intermission it means you’re going to miss some of your movie going back for something to warm you during it.

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Overall we had such a brilliant time; there’s just something magical about watching movies outside and being that it was Harry Potter the castle surroundings really added an atmosphere. Plus the handsome company sure didn’t hurt 😉 The serial sleeper even stayed awake for the whole thing! A perfect date night.

Cost: £15 each (this varies slightly depending on the location)
Doors opened at 6pm show/ads started at 7:30

To search for upcoming movies and venues:
Luna Cinema

Rating: 4/5 broomsticks

What is your favourite Harry Potter movie or moment?

 

LaCock Abbey & Village, Wiltshire (Harry Potter Filming Location)

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As my dad has been here visiting me and my new husband (feels so weird to say that!) we’ve been looking for places to take him to. While searching I stumbled across Lacock Abbey and Village. The abbey and antiquated village have been used as filming locations for Harry Potter, Pride & Prejudice, Downton Abbey and The Other Boleyn Girl. Walking down the cobbled lanes under the leaning Tudor buildings definitely gives the effect of being on a movie set.

The Abbey was built in the 13th century and has been added to and changed over the years. It began as a nunnery, but was converted into a family home. It now belongs to the National Trust.

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Of course the most exciting part for me was that it was used for filming Harry Potter (especially the first movie) so naturally I brought my Gryffindor hat and wand. These cloisters were used as the Hogwarts corridors throughout the first movie (alongside Gloucester cathedral cloisters and some filmed in Oxford).

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It was sometimes difficult to figure out which rooms were used for what but after looking over my photos while watching HP and the Philosopher’s Stone I gathered that this room with the giant cauldron was used as Quirrel’s classroom…

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The cauldron itself wasn’t used in filming but is thought to be a cooking pot used by nuns at the abbey. It makes for a great HP-inspired photo though!

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If instead of going right as you walk in the entrance of the abbey, you can turn left down the cloisters which takes you to Snape’s classroom. There isn’t any information about filming however it does tell you the room was used as a place to store valuable items when it was still a nunnery.

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You can tour through the house above which was home to William Henry Fox Talbot in the 1800s. He was a scientist who produced the first photographic negative using this window…

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If photography sparks your interest there is a small photography museum you can tour through as well.

The village is absolutely magical; photos really don’t do it justice. Not only did I love the old stone, slate roofs and Tudor buildings but there are two more Harry Potter filming locations to stumble upon in the town!

We found Slughorn’s house from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince!

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We also found Harry’s childhood home from the flashbacks of earlier movies (you’ll notice that when they return to Harry’s home in Godric’s Hollow in the last movie it actually looks nothing like this house… the one used for filming that scene can be found in Lavenham).

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The village is small but a lovely breath of the past and definitely worth a wander.

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You might even meet some cheeky little friends along the way!

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Entrance to the Abbey is around £13 or free with a National Trust membership. We really enjoyed our day in Lacock and can’t wait to visit again in the summer months.

What is the best filming location you’ve been to or one that you’d like to see?

Toodle-pip! x

 

 

 

Review: Gloucester Cathedral (Harry Potter Filming Location)

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Being the massive Harry Potter nerd that I am, I had to visit the Gloucester Cathedral cloisters where parts of Harry Potter and the Philospher’s Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets were filmed.

You might recognize these fan-vaulted halls as some of the Hogwarts student halls from the first 2 films (though the graves were covered up for filming). Some scenes that were set here include:

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Of course, Gloucester cathedral is worth a wander for muggles as well as witches and wizards. Besides being an intricately decorated cathedral of regal archways and crystalline stained-glass, there are also some interesting burials and objects about.

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It is the final resting place of Edward II, 7th king of England who lived from 1307 – 1327. He was the first king to hold the title “Prince of Wales.” He loved music and acting and was very unlike the bloodthirsty kings before him, but his short life was fraught with the same scandal and brutality as was typical of the inhumane royals; as was his lover Piers Galveston’s. His remains were refused by 3 other churches, possibly due to his homosexual nature but were accepted into Gloucester Cathedral by Abbott Thoky.

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Here rests also The Duke of Normandy (Robert Curthose). He lived from 1051 – 1134 and was the eldest son of William the Conqueror. After a few failed attempts to overthrow his brother, William II King of England he was jailed at Devizes Castle and later moved to Cardiff Castle where he passed in his 80s.

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But it isn’t all doom and gloom. Behind glass is the processional cross that was used at revered Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation in 1953.

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The cathedral and gift shop are free to enter but there are donation points and visitors are encouraged to give a donation. For any nearby witches and wizards, it is worth a stroll through the gothic halls of Hogwarts.

Next stop on my Harry Potter bucketlist is: Alnwick Castle, Northumberland.

Who is your favourite Harry Potter character? What is your favourite Harry Potter-themed place?

 

 

Review: Harry Potter Studio Tour

As a huge Harry Potter fan, this is probably my most favourite thing I’ve ever done in England. YOU NEED TO GO!

First thing to know is that even though it’s called the “Harry Potter Studio Tour – LONDON” it is NOT in London. The Brits like to pretend that things (like airports *cough* London-Stansted *cough*) that are not in London, are in London, just to confuse foreigners. So you’ll need to sort out transportation from London to get there. It is actually in a town called Leavesden, Hertfordshire.

You’ll arrive to a big cement building that doesn’t look very magical, but don’t let that fool you! There is lots of magic inside; kind of like in Hermione’s Undetectable Extension Charm handbag.

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You’ll then go into a big open foyer where there is a Harry Potter gift shop, Mr. Weasley’s flying car and a super magical Starbucks. Okay it’s just a normal Starbucks. Not everything can be magical. Muggles.

After you’ve had a good look around it’s a good idea to get in the queue. British people love queue’s… sometimes they’ll join the end of one just to see what’s at the front. Magicians err, wizards entertain you as you wait. You’ll get to see Mr. Potter’s humble abode under the stairs as well.

Next you’ll be brought into a theater-esque room to watch a short video about the making of Harry Potter. There’s a little surprise at the end of the video ;).

Next, you’ll find yourself in The Great Hall! The real, live, Great Hall!!! Then you’ll die. Then you’ll resurrect yourself cause that’s what the cool wizards do.

As I went at Christmas time, the hall was decked out in it’s Christmassy best, complete with delicious resin turkeys. Mmmm 🙂


You’ll even get to meet a stuffed Dumbledore! He’ll be at the podium awarding two thousand points to Gryffindor because he feels like it.

“You’ve done smashing Gryffindor! Sod off Slytherin. Ravenclaw you’re alright too, let’s give you some points. What’s the last house again?” -Dumbledore, somewhere in the books.

You’ll obviously need to take photographic proof that you were REALLY in the GREAT HALL at HOGWARTS!!!! My other half not only took me to the Studio Tour, but agreed to wear matching Gryffindor hats. Dear lord, I love that man :). He’s not even a Harry Potter fan. But he will be!

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Down the next hallway are some props and costumes from the Yule Ball and Chocolate Feast, among others…

The fireplace from the Leaky Cauldron I think. If I’m wrong, it’s because I’m testing you you filthy muggle. Being a self-professed HP fan I obviously know things like this.

The Gryffindor sleeping quarters! Mind if I Slytherin there with ya? I stole that joke. I’m not that clever. I’m a thief. I’m sorry.

And the Gryffindor common room! Security at Hogwarts has gotten a tad lax since You Know Who was destroyed. I didn’t even have to say Fortuna Major to get in here. Just pay £33.HPtour4HPtour3

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Hagrid’s Hut!

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I was amazed with how many of the sets actually moved (and weren’t done on a computer). The Chamber of Secrets Door was one such example.

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The Burrow! I loved that in the Weasley household there was a pair of knitting needles knitting themselves and a pot washing itself in the sink. Bloody hell, now there’s a useful charm!

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You might recognize this statue from the Ministry of Magic.

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You’ll also get to see your least favourite character’s office. You know the one you hate way more than Voldemort.

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After looking around wide-eyed at all the sets, you can meander outside to check out Privet Drive, Tom Riddle’s grave, the Knight Bus and Hagrid’s Flying Motorcycle. (this part may have changed since I was there. I know there is now also a Hogwarts Express train). You can also grab a snack and a butterbeer at the refreshments stand.

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But before you think the tour is over, there’s MORE!

Aaragog the Spider is perhaps the most intricate remote-control spider ever made. It takes 15 people to operate this spider. You know you wanna get 15 friends together and hide this in someone’s bed.

You think the tour is winding down at this point, but then, the magic happens!!! DIAGON ALLEY!

And you get to end the best day of your life at this small-scale but still pretty large recreation of Hogwarts which is used for a lot of their shots of the castle.

At the end there is a large selection of wands you can purchase, and of course you can always head to the gift shop if you didn’t get a chance to wander through on the way in.

All in all, this is a needed stop for any Harry Potter fan. Standing where all the action happened is such an amazing feeling, and it’s neat to get a glimpse into how the movies were made.

Christmas is a lovely time to go as the sets are decked out just like they would be in the movies at Christmas time and makes it that extra bit more magical. This year you can even book a ticket to eat a Christmas feast in the Great Hall! How wicked is that!!

The tour lasts 2-3 hours and I like that you can walk through at your own pace. At 33£ for an adult ticket, it’s not a cheap attraction, but so worth it. I would go again in a heartbeat.

Rated: 5/5 points for Gryffindor!

If you’ve been, what was the highlight of the tour for you? What other Harry Potter related places are worth a stop? Whose your favourite character? 🙂

My video of Hogwarts Magic!

Review: Platform 9 and 3/4, King’s Cross Station

King’s Cross Station is a stop in London that every Potter fan needs to make. Train stations are magical in their own right and this is the one where the whole Hogwarts adventure began. There are three main spots to see here.

The first is the REAL platform 9 and 3/4; where the film was actually shot. Luckily for me one of our friends was a body double for Ginny in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and she knew where the actual filming location was. Simply make your way down to the trains… the real platform 9 and 3/4 was shot between platforms 4 and 5. See you in Diagon Alley! (Or as Harry Potter calls it in the Chamber of Secrets “Diagonskjabdkaujsghad”). I’ve been saying it wrong this whole time.

As you can see I’m bringing many trolleys so that I can fill them up at Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes and Gringott’s. Wishful thinking!

The second stop to make at King’s Cross is to the fake Platform 9 and 3/4. Even though it isn’t where it was filmed it’s still a cool photo opportunity. It is right near the Platform 9 and 3/4 gift shop away from the trains. Unfortunately the line is usually quite long! Some of the more creative photo’s I’ve seen taken there are…

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Now I can’t find any information on exactly how many of these carts there are or where they are located but but I believe this one is on the outside of King’s Cross though I haven’t seen it myself.

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And then, there is the 9 and 3/4 shop! It is full of H.P. memorabilia such as wands, shirts, keychains, scarves, chocolate frogs with wizard cards and more. Very similar to the gift shop at the Harry Potter Studio Tour and the Universal Studios gift shop only smaller. On busy days there can be a line-up to go in the shop however. I’d suggest going through the week!

A friendly duel in the Platform 9 and 3/4 shop! Stupefy!

 

I really do love King’s Cross station. It is huge and always buzzing with all sorts of muggles and magical folk alike. I wouldn’t make a trip out just for this but if you’re a Potter fan who finds yourself in London it’s definitely worth a stop to get a few cool and memorable snaps, and perhaps a little something at the 9 and 3/4 shop.

I did buy a little something to remind me of my amazing adventures in London…

Rated: 4/5

Have you been to King’s Cross? Did you take any HP-themed photos? 🙂

Review: Leicester Square & Piccadilly Circus

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I absolutely LOVE this hub of London; it’s bright, it’s loud, it’s chock-full of souvenir shops and always buzzing with people and energy.

 

Leicester Square has many food shops, movie theaters and a carnival at it’s heart. Plus an insatiable amount of souvenir shops that light your way into Piccadilly circus. If you want to find a favourite London mug, some British tea, or a magnet of the Queen this is your stop! Or if you wanna have a chat and a selfie with Billy Shakespeare 😉

There’s usually some sort of entertainment going on here whether it be a magic show, fire eating, singing or dancing.

Also if you have some weird M&M obsession, you can visit M&M’s World. Yes. There is a store filled with just m&m’s… wearing fuzzy British hats and looking dismal. Very British!

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As you stroll along the neon streets you will soon find yourself crossing over into Piccadilly Circus (not exactly sure where one ends and the other begins). Again you will find tons of souvenir shops… like this one…

You know you wanna try and stuff that Union Jack mini in your suitcase.

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And then, da-da-da-da! The main corner (isn’t it odd that Leicester Square is more like a circus and Piccadilly Circus is more like a square?). Though you might for a moment believe you’ve happened upon Hollywood or The Big Apple, those royal red double deckers will soon remind you of just where you are. It’s an interesting mish-mash of old-style London architecture and in-your-face New York style advertising.

Also, if you’re a Harry Potter buff you might recognize Piccadilly Circus from a scene in the Deathly Hallows Part 1.

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And if you’re lucky (as we were) you might even happen upon a random outbreak of dancing in the squa- circus. Worpor Gangnam Style! If you’re unlucky you might happen upon a naked bike ride instead. Don’t google that. You’re totally googling that.

As we were there at Christmas time there was a lovely giant snow globe, though it popped the next day due to high winds.

 

This is one part of London I always look forward to going to (perhaps because I love souvenirs). And yes, I did find my favourite London mug and a few treats to bring home…

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If you’re in London I would highly recommend a stop to Leicester Square and Piccadilly Circus, especially in the evenings when it’s lit-up. It’s free and there’s always lots to see!

Rated: 4.5/5