Potterheads are getting another Harry Potter stomping ground in Japan thanks to the bittersweet closing of one of Tokyo’s oldest amusement parks.
Riffing off the extremely popular Warner Bros. Studio Tour in London, Warner Bros. and several Japanese partners plan to open a Studio Tour Tokyo — Making of Harry Potter experience in Japan in 2023.
The experience will be located on the site of Tokyo’s 94-year-old amusement park, Toshimaen. It’s been struggling lately and will officially close its doors on August 31, making way for construction to commence on the new project.
London’s Harry Potter Studio Tour opened in 2012 and has since had more than 14 million people visit, according to Warner Bros. It’s one of the city’s top attractions and has 43,000 reviews and a five-star rating on TripAdvisor.
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Considering Japan is a massive Harry Potter stan (the first Harry Potter movie is one of the country’s top grossing films of all time), this new park is set to be a big success.
It also isn’t Japan’s first rodeo when it comes to tangible magical realms. In 2014, Japan opened the Universal Studios Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park, with a Hogwarts Castle, Black Lake and live owls. Casual.
The whole experience at this new location in Tokyo will be quite different to your usual bullshit crowded theme park expedition, though. Despite travel expected to return to some form of ‘normalcy’ by 2023, the organisers plan to cap the amount of attendees to the park regardless, meaning no more elbowing people out of the way to cop a good look at all the cool things.
The 30,000sqm park will take roughly half a day to explore and will include replicas of iconic film sets — actually designed and built by the creators of the Harry Potter series — so you can relive your favourite movie scenes.
Potterheads/visitors can view production sets, get up-close and personal with props like wands and potions, see original costumes and take a stroll down the shopping street of Diagon Alley. Basically, your chance to discover how this mega popular book series was brought to life on screen.
Spin-off series Fantastic Beasts also gets a look in, with both franchises on show. According to Timeout Japan, “the ‘beasts’ might even be the very first thing you encounter — park officials have announced that the entrance will include a landscaping area with models of the creatures featured in the magical books”.
There won’t be rides at this theme park, so you’ll still have to hit up Universal Studios Japan for that. The Studio Tour Tokyo — Making of Harry Potter is set to open in 2023.
(Lead Image: Warner Brothers Japan GK)
Sonia feels most at home on the road, with travel her greatest passion. But really, she’s hype about a lot of things: beautiful design, tasty food, wellness, nature, interesting people and women’s issues. The Founding Editor of Junkee’s The Cusp and former Homes Editor at Nine, Sonia prides herself on seeking out authentic experiences with charm and loves sharing a personal rec. Catch her on Instagram @sonnietothetee.