Courtesy of Universal Orlando Resort

Move aside, Santa Claus. There’s a new bearded man in town.

Carlye Wisel
April 13, 2017

Wizards and muggles alike can now enjoy Christmas the way Harry, Hagrid and even Dumbledore would’ve at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Florida. From November 18th 2017 to January 6th 2018, the immersive Harry Potter experiences at both Universal Orlando Resort parks will ramp up the magic for a ‘tis the season touch. Consider the majestic halls of Hogwarts decked, because everything — everything! — will feature a festive Christmas flair, and it’s all included in standard park admission.

How magical will it be? Well, the wand shops and whimsical boutiques of Hogsmeade Village at Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida theme parks will be covered in holiday wreaths and garlands and decorate each individual storefront to celebrate the Christmas season. Expect Hogsmeade’s snow-capped buildings to blend into the wintry celebration perfectly, but the highlight of it all to be Hogwarts Castle. Each night, the enchanted school will be doused in lights and undergo magical of-the-season changes before young wizard’s eyes, thanks to projection mapping technology. (After all, who needs a tree when a 150-foot-tall turret is glimmering in the night sky?)

You can toast the holiday with live entertainment in the Harry Potter-themed sections of both Universal Parks, and enjoy holiday treats “taken straight from the stories," like Hermione and Ron would have. Whether that means Universal Studios will serve the mountains of turkey and boatloads of buttery peas from Hogwarts’ Christmas dinner or simply Butterbeer with some unexpected magic, we’re not sure, but cannot wait to find out. Just hope no ghosts of Christmas past — or in this case, dementors — drop by to spoil the fun.

The Harry Potter-themed Christmas celebration is but one of the holiday events occurring at Universal Orlando Resort, which will debut over-the-top floats and balloons in the all-new Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s this winter, as well as some mistletoe-wielding Minions. At this rate, enjoying the holiday with a dose of magic while potentially escaping any blustery weather back home sounds like a Christmas wish come true.

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