Normally, I prefer to do most of my theme park shopping outside of the parks. I don’t like the idea of buying a ticket just to go shopping.
Places such as CityWalk or Disney Springs are built so you can get souvenirs outside of the parks and devote your inside the park time to riding rides, seeing shows and other theme park business.
However, in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – which you can visit with an Orlando CityPass – shopping is central to the experience.
Our introduction to the world of magic comes when Hagrid takes Harry shopping for school supplies in Diagon Alley so he will be prepared when he arrives at Hogwarts.
When Harry Potter book and/or movie fans go to Universal Orlando, they want that experience of being chosen by a wand, finding the right robes and immersing in the world before boarding the Hogwarts Express and heading off to school.
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Are there many shops in Diagon Alley?
Yes. Canonically, Diagon Alley is essentially Harry Potter’s mall. There are shops upon shops. Sure there are some restaurants, but mostly it’s shop til you drop.
How many shops are in Diagon Alley?
It depends a little on how you categorize things. Is the ice cream parlour a shop? For the purposes of this exercise, I rated it as a restaurant. But certainly, it could go either way.
By my count, there are 13 shops in Diagon Alley, and so here they are ranked by my personal favorites:
13. Shutterbuttons Photography Studio
Visitors can get Harry Potter-style moving photos made at this shop. You’ll be guided through 12 scenes, each taken from an iconic Hogsmeade or Diagon Alley location.
After a bit of acting, you can purchase a DVD photo album in a collectible Shutterbutton’s tin.
12. Wands by Gregorovitch
A rival to Ollivanders wand shop, Gregorovitch’s shop is smaller and usually less busy. So, if you just want to get a wand and get on with the magicking, this is your place.
11. Gringotts Money Exchange
On the plus side, the goblin animatronics are cool at this shop, where you can exchange muggle money for Grigott’s banknotes.
But the minuses? The bank notes are underwhelming. Plus, the shop isn’t located in the Gringotts Wizarding Bank itself.
However, the Gringotts bank notes are good throughout the park. Still, we mostly just carried them around until we had to spend them on our last day.
This is a Wizarding World stationary shop. It has everything a witch or wizard would need for class including ink and inkwells and feather quills, as well as parchment and writing paper.
You can also find notebooks, journals, bookmarks, backpacks, stationery sets, seals, envelopes and postcards.
9. Globus Mundi
A Wizarding World travel agency? Sure, why not?
The shop offers passport holders and luggage tags, along with souvenirs including T-shirts, hoodies, travel mugs, drawstring bags, pins and keychains.
8. Sugarplum’s Sweet Shop
Look, if I want Harry Potter World sweets, I’d rather take the Hogwarts Express to Hogsmeade and shop at the more canonically important Honey Dukes.
But you can get your Bertie Bott’s Every Flavour Beans fix here, so it’s certainly worth a stop.
7. Wiseacre’s Wizarding Equipment
Part of the experience is name recognition from the books, right? So, you want to shop where the characters shopped.
And while Wiseacre’s shop – which sells magical equipment like telescopes, hourglasses and maps – is a part of the Harry Potter canon, it’s not exactly a frequent mention in the books. Still, it’s got some cool stuff.
It’s certainly worth stopping in to pick up a crystal ball for divination. Just watch out for the Grimm.
6. Quality Quidditch Supplies
Get your Quidditch apparel themed to the various Hogwarts Houses at this store which sells shirts, scarves and more.
5. Magical Menagerie
Whether it’s Hermione with Crookshanks, Ron with Scabbers or Harry with Hedwig, every good witch and wizard needs a magical pet.
4. Madam Malkin’s Robes
This shop has dress robes, school uniforms, cloaks and more. Certainly, if you want to look like a wizard or witch, this is the place.
3. Borgin & Burkes
Personally, I love the Knockturn Alley portion of the Wizarding World. I’m not a Slytherin, but I’ve got enough goth in me to love the darker side of magic embraced by Draco and Lucius Malfoy that is represented in this shop.
They have accessories, jewelry, and other collectibles from the dark side that can be hard to find anywhere else.
2. Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes
The classic Harry Potter joke shop owned and operated by Fred and George Weasley until the event that shall not be named.
The shop offers patrons all manner of mischief, such as magical jokes, tricks and toys. Here, you can find Pygmy Puffs, U-No-Poo pills, Skiving Snackboxes, Puking Pastilles and more.
1. Ollivanders Wand Shop
You’re a wizard, Harry. And a wizard needs a wand. Simple as that.
Are there many places to eat in Diagon Alley?
Not as many as you might expect, but a fair few.
You’ve got the famous Leaky Cauldron, The Hopping Pot, The Fountain of Fair Fortune and Florean Fortescue’s Ice-Cream Parlour.
Are there any ‘big name’ Harry Potter shops missing?
Yes, the Flourish & Blotts is missing. This is where the kids went to pick up their textbooks and also the collected works of authors like Gilderoy Lockhart.
Also, I wish they had an Eeylops Owl Emporium. In fact, there is no specific owl shop in this Diagon Alley. If you want a Hedwig-style pet, you’ll have to head to the Magical Menagerie.
Do I have to carry my purchases around the rest of the day?
No. If you’re staying at a Universal Orlando resort property, you can have it sent to your room.
But if you are not staying at a Universal resort, the park will hold purchases for you so you can easily pick them up on your way out.
Packages will be delivered to the Universal Store in CityWalk three hours after purchasing during regular store hours, from 11 am to midnight.
Do you have a favorite Diagon Alley shop? If so, let us know in the comments!