There are marvelous Scottish locations for Harry Potter fans to visit that will make anyone who visits the locations feel the strong magical vibe and sense of pride of stepping foot in these wondrous locations.
The Harry Potter fandom does not end in hoarding collectibles. Most dream to have that immersive experience by being in places they’ve seen in movies and seeing the embodiment of their imaginations from books.
Scotland has served as the filming location of Harry Potter movie scenes. This country to travel boasts magnificent castles and breathtaking landscapes. And of course, the Scottish locations for your main goals, you should visit most if not all.
To help you in your extraordinary trip to chase Harry Potter places, we have listed all the spots in Scotland that will make your trip the most memorable.
Ready your camera and make sure to capture the remarkable moments as you find your way to the following Scottish locations for Harry Potter fans to visit:
15. George Heriot’s School (Inspired the 4 Different Houses in Hogwarts)
Location: Lauriston Pl, Edinburgh EH3 9EQ, United Kingdom
You might have not known this but Scotland has a private school where students are divided into four houses just like in Hogwarts. George Heriot’s School has a Castle, Greyfriars, Lauriston, and Raeburn as houses where students earn points for their house to win the academic year.
For every Harry Potter Fan, this translates to four different houses in Hogwarts namely Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, and Slytherin in the world of Harry Potter.
The school’s facade even has a similarity to that of the Hogwarts structure so if you’re visiting Scotland, make sure to check out this school and see for yourself how Hogwarts-like the place is.
14. Greyfriars Kirkyard in Edinburgh (Inspiration For Names of Harry Potter Characters)
Location: 26A Candlemaker Row, Edinburgh EH1 2QQ, United Kingdom
Greyfriars Kirkyard is a place where JK Rowling would visit and in this grave, you will find names that pretty much resemble some of the famous Harry Potter names.
There’s a real-life grave with the name of Thomas Riddell Esquire which a Harry Potter fan would easily associate with the main antagonist of the story known as Lord Voldemort with Thomas Marvolo Riddle as the real name.
In Greyfriars Kirkyard, you can also find names like William McGonagall that would remind you of Professor McGonagall and Elizabeth Moodie that closely resembles Mad-Eye Moody who was first introduced in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
13. Mary King’s Close, Edinburgh ( Resembles Knockturn Alley)
Location: Warriston’s Close, 2, High St, Edinburgh EH1 1PG, United Kingdom
Another Scottish location that resembles a Harry Potter place is Mary’s King Close in Edinburgh. This place is a hidden close located beneath the Royal Mile.
Although not as dark and sinister as Knockturn Alley in Harry Potter, Mary King’s Close beneath the Royal Mile would give every Harry Potter fan an idea of how it would be to visit a scary place in the Wizarding world.
In this close, you will find old buildings with cold rooms that would make you feel like you’re in a different era.
This place is said to be one of the most haunted places in Edinburgh and is not recommended for those who are faint-hearted.
12. J.K. Rowling Suite in The Balmoral Hotel
Location: 1 Princes St, Edinburgh EH2 2EQ, United Kingdom
The Balmoral Hotel has a suite named after Harry Potter’s famous author JK Rowling after JK was said to finish the last pages of the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows book in the room.
If you’re willing to spend more than necessary to experience the place where the last part of the series came into fruition, then you can book the place and enjoy a night or two at the luxurious J.K. Rowling Suite.
In this Balmoral Hotel suite in Scotland, you will get to see the very desk where JK Rowling wrote pages of her book and have bragging rights of having to stay in the same room as the author.
11. Loch Shiel in Glenfinnan (Hogwarts Lake)
Location: A830, Glenfinnan PH37 4LT Scotland
Loch Shiel is another one of the best Harry Potter filming locations in Scotland for the Hogwarts Lake for close-up shots of the Hogwarts castle.
Loch Shiel is a freshwater loch located in the Lochaber area of the Scottish Highlands.
The loch as a Harry Potter filming location is about 10 miles long and is crossed by the Glenfinnan Viaduct which was featured in one of the Harry Potter movies.
You can hike around Loch Shiel, take a cruise around the lake, or just take in the scenery and imagine yourself being a Hogwarts student.
10. Glen Coe (Hagrid’s Hut setting)
Location: Ballachulish PH49 4LA, UK, Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Another one of the Harry Potter filming locations in Scotland is the famous Glen Coe in the Scottish highlands. Areas in Glen Coe served as filming locations for Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban along with Harry Potter and the Half-blood Prince.
One of the notable scenes that every Harry Potter fan would be interested to know about is the shut of Hagrid Hut’s setting during the Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban film where you have the pumpkin patch, the gatehouse, and the bridge was taken in Glen Coe. You might also remember the scene with Buckbeak near Hagrid’s Hut before the sentence and that was also shot in Glen Coe.
The iconic place of the sundial stone circle where Hermione punched Draco Malfoy in one of the Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban scenes was also shot in Glen Coe.
There’s even a Harry Potter-themed tour from Edinburgh that you can join in that visits Glen Coe. If you’d like to personalize your visit, you can reach Glen Coe in about 3 hours of drive from Edinburgh and 30 minutes away from Fort William.
9. Loch Eilt and Eilean Na Mòine (Dumbledore’s Grave)
Location: Lochaber, Highland, Scotland
Loch Eilt is another Harry Potter filming location in Scotland that served as the place for the scene in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 film where Ron, Hermione, and Harry were searching for Dumbledore’s grave.
Loch Eilt in Scotland is a freshwater loch located in Lochaber, West Highland, Scotland. It is about 6 miles long with surrounding mountains such as Beinn Bhan, Glas Bheinn Mhor, and Creag a t-Sithichean.
The loch is available for public access and you can hike the area or go boating in the summertime.
You can also find Eilean Na Mòine in Loch Eilt. Eilean Na Mòine is a small island where Dumbledore was buried and was shown in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows Part 1. Eilan Na aside from being a Harry Potter filming location has its enchanting beauty with the remains of an old chapel in the ruins. It is believed that the chapel was built around 500 years ago and was used as a burial ground for the Macdonald clan.
The island is currently uninhabited but you can take a boat ride to get there and explore the place.
If you’re interested in seeing the place of Dumbledore’s grave, then Loch Eilt and Eilean Na should be on your list of places to visit in Scotland.
8. Rannoch Moor (Death Eaters in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 Train Scene)
Location: Perth and Kinross, Scotland
The Rannoch Moor is a large wild moorland in Perthshire, Scotland that was used as the filming location for the eerie scene where death eaters swarmed the train in search of Harry Potter. You will see Rannoch Moor at the start of the scene where the Hogwarts Express passed by the moor followed by a scene focused on death eaters stopping the train and apparating onboard.
The best way to get a good glimpse of the moor as one of the Harry Potter Scotland locations that you must visit is by riding on a train by the West Highland Line or through the Hogwarts Express train, the Jacobite Steam Train.
You can also join in on tours that will take you to the place to reminisce the dreadful times in Hogwarts when fear was everywhere because of the rise of Lord Voldemort.
As a true Harry Potter fan, you would want to be in all Harry Potter locations in the film and Rannoch Moor is certainly a Scotland place not to miss.
7. Steall Falls and Black Rock Gorge in Glen Nevis (Triwizard Tournament Scenery Hungarian Horntail Dragon Scenes in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire )
Those who are a die-hard fans of Quidditch matches or anything relating to riding the magical broomstick and zooming up above, would not want to miss the location where Harry has to steal the egg from the vicious Hungarian Horntail Dragon aboard his Firebolt.
The Steall Falls in Glen Nevis was one of the breathtaking backdrops during the Triwizard Tournament with the Hungarian Horntail Dragon.
And of course, aside from Steall Falls and still during the Triwizard Tournament in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, is the Black Rock Gorge where Harry hid away from the frightening gaze of the dragon.
The Steall Falls and Black Gorge are must-visit places in Scotland for those who can’t get enough of the thrilling movie scenes from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
6. Alnwick Castle (Harry Potter’s first flying lesson in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone)
Location: Alnwick NE66 1NQ, United Kingdom
Alnwick Castle is a Harry Potter filming location near the Scottish Borders that served as the Hogwarts Castle in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Who can forget the scene when Harry first showcased the natural flying skills that earned him the Seeker spot? The first flying lesson scene was filmed in Alnwick Castle and now, you can even get yourself a photograph in a broomstick when you visit this famous attraction.
Alnwick Castle, as one of the Hogwarts locations in Scotland, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Northumberland, England, and is known to be the second-largest inhabited castle after Windsor Castle.
The castle was also used as a filming location for Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves and Downton Abbey.
There are several tours that you can take advantage of from Edinburgh that offers a visit to Alnwick Castle.
5. Glen Etive and Loch Etive (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Scenes)
Location: Glen Etive is located in the Highlands of Scotland and Loch Etive is located in Argyll and Bute, Scotland
Glen Etive, as one of the Harry Potter Places in Scotland, served as the backdrop of Loch Etive where the famous shot of the trio, Harry, Ron, and Hermione jumping off from the back of the dragon after robbing and escaping from Gringotts, was taken.
Loch Etive was also the lake where Harry and Ron had an argument and Hermione had to tie a scarf on a tree near a lake.
This loch stretches for 30 miles with magnificent views. Whether you are a Harry Potter fan or not, you will appreciate the loveliness of the surrounding area of Loch Etive.
4. Scottish Owl Centre (Ron’s Owl Erroll had a Brother Owl Named Oulu that was once in this Centre)
Location: Polkemmet Country Park, Whitburn, Bathgate EH47 0AD, United Kingdom
The Scottish Owl Centre despite not being a filming location for Harry Potter is a place that every Harry Potter Fan would appreciate because of the amazing collection of owls that the centre takes pride in. These owls will surely remind you of the scenes in Hogwarts’ Banquet Hall where deliveries and messages are done by owls.
The Scottish Owl Centre is a sanctuary for over 140 owls with 50 different species of owls from all over the world.
Aside from being able to see different types of owls up close, you will also be able to get an insight into how these nocturnal predators go about their everyday lives through the different talks and demonstrations that are being conducted in the centre.
The centre is located in Polkemmet Country Park which offers a great day out for the whole family with its playgrounds, picnic areas, and walks.
3. The Elephant House – One of J.K. Rowling’s Writing Spot
Location: 21 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EN, United Kingdom
The Elephant House in Edinburgh is coined as “The Birthplace of Harry Potter”. There are rumors surrounding this location as a place where JK Rowling wrote her first Harry Potter Book. Some said that JK Rowling’s favorite spot was the table by the window that overlooks Edinburgh Castle. Additional information said that there even was a space heater near the table in the Elephant House where J.K. would keep her baby’s stroller close for warmth.
A Harry Potter fan will be beaming with pride for being able to visit this historic cafe of the Elephant House, one of the Harry Potter locations in Scotland where all the boy wizard Harry Potter magic started.
2. Victoria Street in Edinburgh (The Diagon Alley Inspiration)
Location: Victoria St., Edinburgh, UK
Victoria Street in Edinburgh embodies the famous Diagon Alley where Harry and his friends would shop for their school supplies. The colorful Victoria Street has mesmerizing shops that will remind you of the bustling streets of Diagon Alley. This place was said to be the inspiration of JK Rowling for Diagon Alley. Just like in Diagon Alley, the street has a line of different shops selling a variety of delightful wares.
Remember the Gringotts Bank first seen in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone where Harry first learned about his inheritance of Wizarding money from his parents? This street before had the Royal Bank of Scotland situated on a location where you expect Gringotts to be and also had a stationary shop that stood in the place where Flourish & Blotts can be seen in the movie.
Walking on Victoria Street will have you experience the feeling of shopping like a true witch or wizard in one of the real-life resemblances of Harry Potter locations.
1. Jacobite Steam Train and Glenfinnan Viaduct (Hogwarts Express at Platform 9 and 3/4 and view from flying car as seen on Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets)
Location (Jacobite Steam Train): Tom-na-Faire, Station Square, Fort William, Highland, PH33 6EN.
Another one of the Harry Potter filming locations was for the popular Hogwarts Express, the Jacobite Steam Train. A Harry Potter fan would not want to miss Harry Potter train journeys in the Jacobite Steam Train which was used as the Hogwarts Express in all Harry Potter movies both its exterior and interior.
The Jacobite Steam Train is a real train offering rides from the north to the west coast of Scotland. The train ride is said to be one of the best train ride experiences in the world.
One of the popular train routes is the Fort William to Mallaig train route.
With Fort William to Mallaig train route, aside from the breathtaking sceneries, you also get to pass by the remarkable Glenfinnan Viaduct.
The Glenfinnan Viaduct is another one of the Harry Potter filming locations in the Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets movie. During Harry Potter’s second year in Hogwarts when he and Ron tried to find means to attend school because of issues in platforms 9 and 3/4, both ended up having to ride on a flying car. The enchanted Ford Anglia car had to follow Hogwarts Express and one of the magnificent views as the train was on its way to Hogwarts feature the Glenfinnan Viaduct.
Aside from riding the Jacobite Steam Train that passes by the Glenfinnan Viaduct, there’s another option for those who want just to have a good view of the place. There’s a place called Glenfinnan Viaduct Viewpoint, a 20-minute hike away from a parking place in Glenfinnan near Fort William. From the Glenfinnan Viaduct viewpoint, you can see a familiar view when traveling to Hogwarts. You can also check what time the train passes by and get a dream photo as a Harry Potter fan of the embodiment of Hogwarts Express passing by the scenic Glenfinnan Viaduct.
There you go, all the magical Scottish locations for Harry Potter Fans to visit. These locations will give life to the imaginations of book readers and make all avid supporters of the Harry Potter movies feel as if they are in the wizarding world itself. Who knows, maybe you might even encounter a real-life Hogwarts student or professor while sightseeing!
Harry Potter fans can also enjoy some Harry Potter goodness in London if they are nearby!