First Look: Harry Potter a Forbidden Forest Experience
We have been waiting for the highly-anticipated Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience for months. Last night’s preview lived up to the hype (and so much more!) where we enjoyed an interactive experience walking through the forest, along with creatures and moments from the “Harry Potter™ and Fantastic Beasts™” films. Created by Warner Bros. Themed Entertainment in partnership with Thinkwell, Unify and Fever, the experience is fun for all Harry Potter fans where you’ll instantly become immersed in this magical world.
Held at Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park in Yorktown Heights, the experience opens on Saturday, October 22nd and runs through January 2023. Helpers guided us along the way, providing additional context to each experience. This started in the beginning with an assortment of lanterns. Guests had to learn the spell to turn them on and off, and then we were off on our self-paced adventure.
As we walked, we took in the beauty of trees, illuminated by a collection of reds, purples, and greens as well as mist and sounds from the movies. Along the way we saw a larger-than-life model of Hagrid, who was protecting the forest with his beloved dog, Fang. We saw a Hippogriff and had the chance to bow to it, and even Hagrid’s brother, Grawp was there, intertangled in the trees and branches in the forest. Centaurs, Unicorns, Nifflers, and Arthur Weasley’s flying car was there, too.
There was a convenient resting point during the mid-point of the trail for bathrooms and snacks. We enjoyed hot chocolates, sprinkled with colors from our Harry Potter house of choice and treats like chocolate cupcakes and savory potato pies. Benches next to the food stand were much-appreciated as we enjoyed our snacks and took a rest before the next part of our journey.
The experience is also geared to immerse kids (and adults) into this magical Wizarding World. The kids loved participating in an interactive wand duel, and using wands to conjure a Patronus. There was also a cool spider moment that gets you up close with Aragog and his crew of spidery friends. The experience ends with an uproarious grand finale as you follow along for one last battle.
Fans of the books and movies will love walking through this world, and experiencing this world in a completely different way.
Throughout the whole experience, it was incredible to walk through the woods of Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park that lent itself to the magical backdrop of this world, and all of the many creatures who inhabit the forest. The entire experience is outdoors (except for the heated bathrooms), so definitely bundle up and wear outdoor shoes.
The experience notes that wizards, witches and Muggles of all ages can visit. However, it does take place at night (5:00pm-11:00pm) and features lights, sounds, and characters that might be scary for younger kids. Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience runs for 60-90 minutes.
Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience
Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park
2957 Crompond Road, Yorktown Heights, NY 10598
Opening hours are Mondays–Sundays, 5:00pm-11:00pm (last entry at 9:45pm).
One parking spot per car at Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park ($8 online or $10 if you purchase on-site)
Ticket prices range in prices and are limited! Get your tickets here.