Hogwarts Express

The Hogwarts Express is nearing its testing phase at Universal Orlando, and one unusual feature of the unique attraction has become clear.

Linking the existing Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Islands of Adventure with the under-construction Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida, the Hogwarts Express will recreate the journey taken by Potter and his friends at the start and finish of every year at Hogwarts. It will actually travel through a backstage area between the two parks, but multimedia technology will be used to convince guests that they are journeying between London and Hogsmeade.

Many eagle-eyed fans have noticed from the views seen of the Hogwarts Express track so far that there is nowhere for the ride's two trains to turn around (there is, though, a point midway through the circuit at which the track splits to enable them to pass). What that does mean? Simple: you'll travel in reverse from Hogsmeade to Diagon Alley.

Hogwarts Express train
Motion testing of the Hogwarts Express is likely to begin soon.

Will this affect the ride experience? Probably not. Given Universal's focus on authenticity in its Wizarding World developments, it's likely that the seats on the Hogwarts Express will be arranged similarly to those in the train seen in the films - i.e. some guests will be facing forwards, and other backwards. So someone will always be going in reverse.

To those outside the train, though, the Hogwarts Express locomotive will appear to be at the wrong end of the train when its travelling from Islands of Adventure to Universal Studios Florida. Whether they'll actually be able to see this, though, is questionable: Universal is likely to use every trick in the book to hide the backstage journey of the train from skeptical onlookers.

For all the latest news and updates on this magical train ride, watch our dedicated Hogwarts Express page.

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.



It's illegal for a locomotive to push wagons backwards without being the head engine or pushing forwards from behind.
(exclude shunting).

If they could get the engine to the front (even if it's still backwards) then that would be fine. It's not often you see a tender engine reversing though.

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