Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience Review

No Hogwarts students should go to the Forbidden Forest, but it’s now open to us muggles who can experience all the wonders and scary things from the Harry Potter Wizarding World. So what it’s like to have the Harry Potter Forbidden Forest experience? You’re about to find out, as my husband and I spent an evening discovering all its secrets.

The Harry Potter Forbidden Forest Experience is available in the UK and in the US. We visited the experience in the UK, which is the original birthplace of the successful Harry Potter series. We now have all the details you need to decide if this is an experience you wish to enjoy with your family.

There will be a forest, magical creatures, spells, and lots of delightful food. And yes, there will be butter beer involved! We got our tickets from Feverup!

Potter fans, let’s have the wands ready and see what’s going on.

How to get there

In the UK, the Harry Potter forbidden forest experience is located at the Arley Hall in Cheshire. The easiest way to get to the experience is by car. There is a free of charge car park on site, which is managed throughout the experience to ensure you find a spot with ease.

We recommend renting a car for this adventure.


Ticket prices range from £26.50-£48 for adults and £21.50-£36 for children, depending on the session date and time. Children under the age of 5 get free entry.

To get your tickets, we recommend booking well in advance, as tickets sell out very fast. We used feverup for our tickets. To save, get a family or a group bundle.

The exhibit is open to all ages. Honestly, nothing was too scary. In general, the kids were the most excited on the trail and each one of them was keen to interact with the forest. I would say that if your kids are afraid of spiders, there is one experience which involves them, but it’s an option to avoid it on the trail so you don’t have to worry about it.

Entry is timed, and you are advised to arrive at the time written on your ticket. You can purchase tickets timed from 4:45pm to 9:45pm.

Standard Admission includes standard entry to the forest trail inspired by the wizarding world as well as access to the Village full of magical food and drink.

The Harry Potter Forbidden Forest Experience

Park your car and get your wands ready. Follow the illuminated path towards the entrance. Friendly fellow muggles will check your tickets and guide you towards the main path.

Before you begin, you have the option to relax with a cup of hot chocolate based on your Harry Potter house. There are plenty of sweet treats too, including Aragog cupcakes, fudge, and other hot drinks. It’s also the best place to purchase a chocolate wand if you fancy.

When you are ready to start the journey, an instructor will tell you all the rules for the trail. The immersive experience begins with the instructor, and that’s about the moment when you should start getting very excited about the upcoming experiences.

The trail itself is in a beautiful forest, with gorgeous music in the background and fantastic illuminations. There is something magnificent to check and admire at every step. Along the route, there are plenty of opportunities to cast spells.

You will be able to cast a patronus spell but make no mistake, as this is, after all, the most difficult spell to cast. So you won’t see your patronus until you successfully say it right.

You will see a Hippogriff, where you can test your bowing etiquette skills! There are so many spots for photos and selfies. One of my favourite was in front of the famed Ford Anglia from the series.

The highlight for me was the spider experience. Now, I need to stress that some people might have difficulties with this one, but luckily, it’s not visible from the trail unless you wish to enter that portion of the forest. So if you want to see Aragog’s den, this is the place for you. I don’t like spiders much, but I found the experience very mild and fun. You need to figure it out whether you would like to try it or not. I think everyone will be fine, as long as there is no severe arachnophobia there.

Halfway through the trail, there is a nice spot to get more sweet treats and another round of butterbears and hot chocolates. It’s a good place to pick up some hot chocolate on a cold evening. There are seating areas as well if you wish to take a moment and just enjoy the forested atmosphere.

The end of the trail concluded with one of the most epic scenes from Harry Potter. Of course, we would rather not spoil the surprise for you. But it really is so much fun for adults and kids alike.

After the trail, you can visit the village to get Harry Potter treats and grab some delicious marshmallows, which you can toast over an open fire.

The atmosphere is always cosy and merry, and you can see how everyone is having so much fun. Needless to say, it was a successful date night for the two of us.

Tips for the experience

There are a few things we think it’s important for you to know about the trail.

Arrive 10-15 minutes before your timed entry. This is because you will want to park at your leisure, walk slow, stop along the way to take some pictures, use the loo and maybe grab a hot chocolate. You wouldn’t want to rush there. If you are late, you can still enter, so don’t worry.

Have a camera with you. There are so many cool picture opportunities, have your camera ready. Just remember that it’s fairly dark, so either use a camera which takes good quality night photos or your iphone camera as that works well too.

Get waterproofs. The experience is in England, in the evening…in a forest! Chances are, it’s either going to rain or it will be fairly muddy. Get your wellies or your country walking shoes.

Cosy up. The Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest experience runs from October to December so you should prepare for a cold English autumn. Grab a scarf, some mittens and ensure you layer up.

Allocate about 2 hours. The walk takes 60-90 minutes in the forest, but with all the stops, picture opportunities and grabbing those treats, you can expect to spend around 2 hours at the experience.

Book early. Make sure to book your tickets in advance. Most tickets go superfast so book now to avoid disappointment.

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Cory from You Could Travel entering Senso-ji in Tokyo, Japan

Cory Varga – Cory is a published travel writer and award-winning photographer. She travels full time with her husband and is passionate about creating in-depth travel guides. Cory published her first book on Japanese customs and manners because she’s obsessed with everything Japan. She has visited hundreds of destinations and has lived in 7 different countries. Cory is multilingual and an alumna from The University of Manchester.


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