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Hogwarts Castle image

Universal Orlando has added a new feature to its official Wizarding World of Harry Potter website, enabling users to take a virtual walk through the highly-anticipated new area at Islands of Adventure.

To access the feature, Potter fans should visit the Wizarding World website and click on the "Hogsmeade" banner. This will take them to an eye-level view of a 3D model of the Wizarding World, which they can explore by navigating with their computer's mouse.

Although the model has been viewable previously through an "on-rails" virtual flying tour, this is first time that visitors to the site have been able to manually navigate through it. They'll soon be able to explore the real thing, with the Orlando Attractions Magazine quoting Alan Gilmore, the art director for the Wizarding World, as saying a "soft opening" is very likely ahead of land's official opening on June 18, 2010.

The magazine's full interview with Gilmore, embedded below, reveals few new details of Universal's $200 million project. However, the art director does confirm that the area's headline attraction - Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey - will consist entirely of a flying journey with Harry. It is already known that the ride will see guests boarding "enchanted benches" which will carry them on an adventure featuring key scenes from the Potter books and movies.

You can keep up to date with the latest confirmed and rumored opening dates for new attractions through Theme Park Tourist's "New Attraction Watch" section, and by signing up for our weekly newsletter.

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