Before you pull on your wellies and go traipsing all across the UK countryside in search of the places where Harry Potter and his pals grew up, went to school, or had their magical maladies and injuries tended to, you may want to take a look at these maps.
Tumblr user ofabeautifulnight seems to have put a good deal of time and effort into mapping out a number of key locations from the world J.K. Rowling created for her Potter characters, transposing them onto a map of the United Kingdom.
Of course Hogwarts itself is in north-western Scotland (everyone knows that), and you can catch the express train there from London’s King’s Cross Station (platform 9 ¾), what about places like Little Whinging or the ancestral home of the Black family, Number 12, Grimmauld Place? And where exactly are the Ministry of Magic, Tom Riddle’s orphanage, and The Leaky Cauldron (a necessary stop for the thirsty traveller on a Potter pilgrimage)? ofabeautifulnight’s two maps reveal all, pointing Potter fans to the approximate places in London and it’s surrounding areas where the Rowling-invented spots would be – if only we Muggles could actually see them.
One small travel tip: although architecture buffs might be tempted to seek out the prison Azkaban, according to the maps it lies in the centre of a gas field off the coast of Scotland in the North Sea. Unless you’re an experienced sailor, you may want to stick to touring around on dry land.
If a trip to the UK isn’t in your immediate future you can always content yourself with a virtual tour of the wizarding mecca Diagon Alley, available courtesy of Google Street View.