In some ways, London is the epicenter for magical experiences in the Muggle world. In London, you can visit the Harry Potter studio tour from London, plus see other sights and sites from the books (like Platform 9¾) and films on Harry Potter walking tours. There are even a number of places in London that inspired J.K. Rowling as she created the magical world – though they never appeared on the page or silver screen.
That’s why I have an entire Harry Potter Bucket List for London! There’s so much to do that you can spend a lifetime doing them all. You might remember that list includes “Go on a Harry Potter Walking Tour,” which is why I’ve written this post. Here you’ll find a list of the most magical and best Harry Potter walking tours in London, to help you choose one to do on your next trip.
“Can we find all this in London?” “If yeh know where to go.”Harry and Hagrid, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
(This list is in no specific order, so I didn’t put any numbers next to each one!)
I’ve done several walking tours by London Walks. This includes their Harry Potter walking tour on my first trip to London (way back in 2011!). Their tours do have a cost but it’s reasonable – usually less than £10 per person.
London Walks offers two Harry Potter walking tours. The main one is a film location tour, so the tour route primarily focuses on those locations that you can actually recognize from the films Harry Potter movies. Their other tour is called “Harry Potter on Location in London,” and mixes film locations with magical world-inspiring spots.
(London Walks offers Harry Potter walking tours on set days and times throughout the week. Be sure to check the schedule and plan it into the rest of your Harry Potter itinerary.)
Tour for Muggles
Tour for Muggles is committed to ensuring you have a magical experience before and during your Harry Potter walking tour. Their website is by far the most magically on-theme of any tour companies. Heck, they even say they’re certified by the Department of Tourism & Muggle Relations! This is where all those weird Muggle Studies students end up working!
During the 2.5-hour “tour for Muggles,” you’ll make your way from London Bridge to Leicester Square, seeing Harry Potter sights and sites across Southwark, the West End, and Westminster. The tour is £16 for adult witches and wizards and £14 for underage ones.
Free Tours by Foot
As their name suggests, Free Tours by Foot offer free walking tours in London. For their Harry Potter walking tour though, you’ll do a mix of walking and riding the Tube – they visit a lot of Harry Potter sights in London, including a mix of those in the films, books, and inspirational spots.
From Leadenhall Market (which is thought to have inspired Diagon Alley) to Millennium Bridge to Scotland Yard Place, make sure you wear comfy shoes for this one!
If you’re looking for an alternative free Harry Potter walking tour in London (or just need a different one to do as you’ve done the others on this list already), check out the walking tour offered by Strawberry Tours. Their ‘pay what you can’ pricing means the walking tour itself is free – and guides welcome donations of any British pounds or galleons you think they deserve.
This tour lasts two hours and sets out from Leicester Square to show you some of the most inspiring places in Central London including those that inspired Diagon Alley and Knockturn Alley!
Brit Movie Tours
Harry Potter is just one of the British movie franchises that Brit Movie Tours focus on with their walking tours and bus tours. But I’d argue it’s by far the best – and certainly the most magical!
The 2- to 2.5-hour Harry Potter walking tour by Brit Movie Tours begins at Westminster and ends at Bank, wandering around and along the Thames to show you more than 10 Harry Potter film and book locations across London. The tour is £12 for adults and £10 for underage witches and wizards; it’s offered on various days based on the season, so check their site (below) while planning.
Harry Potter Walking Tour Airbnb Experiences
On one of my trips to London last year, I booked an Airbnb… when I finished my booking, the site automatically (one might say magically!) recommended a few “Airbnb Experiences” to me, as add-ons. One was a Harry Potter walking tour and I had to give it a try!
(I also received these Sorting Hat cupcakes on my second trip to London last year as a surprise from Airbnb for having booked my first experience! Too cute!)
If you’ve never heard of Airbnb Experiences, they’re tours offered by locals. Just like how an Airbnb lets you stay or rent from a local host, Airbnb Experiences let you experience their city with a local guide.
Unsurprisingly, there are plenty of Potterheads who call London home and love guiding tours! Here are the Harry Potter walking tours currently offered on Airbnb Experiences.
Explore Harry Potter’s London Tour
This is the Airbnb Experience that I booked on my trip, and honestly, it was fabulous! Our magical host Mark was a fellow Slytherin and led a small group on a great tour despite a soaking London rain. Mark also used an iPad to show small stills and clips exactly where we were standing in each place – earning him N.E.W.T. level scores for guiding. This tour is also really affordable at just $15 per person.
As of publishing, the tour rates 4.96 with 2153 reviews. I am one of those reviews!
London’s Ultimate Harry Potter Tour
In addition to visiting some of London’s top Harry Potter sites, this Airbnb experience wanders the London streets to end at the House of MinaLima. If you’re not familiar, that’s the design house that produced a lot of the iconic imagery including the Daily Prophet typography and all the Weasly’s Wizarding Wheezes packaging that we now consider the iconic in the magical world.
Hosts Amy, Zoë, and Tom will help you explore some new London and Harry Potter sights with this one!
Harry Potter Walking Tour
While the name of this Airbnb Experience is perhaps the least creative or inspired, it is another of the most popular Harry Potter walking tours offered on the platform. Starting at King’s Cross and Platform 9¾, host Geoff will help you make your way south into the heart of Central London to see magical Harry Potter sites all along the way.
Muggle Tour of Harry Potter’s London
James is an OG Potterhead – he claims to be the first Harry Potter walking tour guide, with his tour dating back to 2011! While I didn’t go on his tour during my first trip to London that year, he has shown the dedication of a Hufflepuff in continuing his tour for almost a decade. On this tour, you’ll visit all of the iconic Harry Potter sights across Central London.
Click here to see this Airbnb Experience. (Note: this link may not be working, and I’m not sure why!)
Muggling around with Harry Potter
I’m not exactly sure what “muggling around” is, but I’m here for it! This small-group tour (10 Muggles max!) is lead by Alan who has been guiding tours in London for years. He’ll show you many of the same sights on other tours, and includes highlight stops at Whitehall (Gringotts Wizarding Bank), Trafalgar Square, and Knockturn Alley – though we can’t reveal where that last one is in this post!
Magical Harry Potter Tour & Wand Battle
If you need yet another option, I recently discovered this Harry Potter walking tour on Airbnb Experiences. It follows the same route as many of the others, but includes several fun add-ons like a sorting ceremony and chance to participate in your own (currently socially distanced) wand battle.
Which of these Harry Potter walking tours do you want to do the most? Let me know in the comments, as well as any questions!