“Potter” Filming Locations Make Top Ten List of Destinations Made Famous by On-Screen Appearances
While all seven of the Potter movies were predominantly filmed at Warner Bros. Studios in Leavesden, Hertfordshire, it’s no secret that the production also traveled across the length and breadth of the United Kingdom to find locations to help bring the wizarding world to life. Visiting filming locations is a way for fans to connect with their favorite movies or TV shows, and new research has revealed exactly which destinations in the UK have been made popular by their roles on the big (or small) screen.
The team at holidaycottages.co.uk used Tripadvisor to compile a list of locations that have the most mentions of films or TV shows in their reviews, with three Harry Potter filming locations making it into the top ten.
The highest-ranking Potter location is Glenfinnan Viaduct in Scotland, which is placed at number six on the list, with a total of 52% of reviews containing a mention of the series. The Glenfinnan Viaduct is, of course, recognizable for an iconic scene in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, which shows the Hogwarts Express transporting students to Hogwarts for the new school year. Fans from across the world travel to this location in the hope of re-creating this magical movie movement by watching the Jacobite cross the Viaduct, and it’s so popular that recent safety concerns have led to the development of more parking spaces near the site.
Coming in at number seven on the list, and just below the Glenfinnan Viaduct, is Oxford University’s Christchurch College, which was used for some interior Hogwarts scenes in the first two Potter movies. A total of 41% of reviews for Christchurch College reference Harry Potter, which surely represents the number of visitors who are hoping to create their own magic by walking the halls of Hogwarts.
Taking the last spot in the top ten is Alnwick Castle, known for being the location of the Gryffindors’ and Slytherins’ first flying lesson at Hogwarts. According to the research, 38% of Alnwick Castle reviews mention Potter, which isn’t surprising given its prominent place in Sorcerer’s Stone.
While the top spot on the list of top ten locations made famous by their on-screen appearances isn’t a Potter location, it does have a link to the Wizarding World. St Mary’s Church in Bampton was used in the TV series Downton Abbey, which starred Dame Maggie Smith (Professor McGonagall) as Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham. With 85% of reviews mentioning Downton Abbey, it’s clear that fans are keen to experience their favorite show in person! Some of the other TV shows whose filming locations appear on the list include Game of Thrones, Sherlock, and Outlander.
Shannon Keary, digital PR manager at holidaycottages.co.uk, was excited to share the findings of this work, particularly because it highlights the range of UK landmarks and landscapes used across film and television:
It’s really exciting to see that so many of our favourite TV shows and films were filmed right on our doorstep. The UK has so much to offer in terms of natural beauty, wonderful history, and grand buildings.
Filming locations are a core part of every fandom because they represent a gateway into the fantastical worlds of our imaginations. We hope that fans will be able to experience the magic of their films and television shows again by visiting these locations after the pandemic is over.
Be sure to check out more about this campaign and explore other filming locations in the United Kingdom and worldwide that have appeared in some of your favorite shows and movies.
Is there a Potter filming location that you really want to visit? Have you taken trips to any other movie or TV locations across the world?