Okay, so we're onto part 3 of my trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando. If you missed the others, check out Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. After walking around in the blazing hot sun of Florida, even in September, the dark and cool Knockturn Alley seems like a great place to hide for a little bit. If you have an interactive wand, you can spend even more time here, as there are quite a few place to use it and use magic. Knockturn Alley, like you might expect from reading about it in the Harry Potter books, is everything that Diagon Alley (where it is located) isn't. Where Diagon is bright and vibrant, Knocturn is almost pitch black. Someone complained that there wasn't any seating here, but if there was, you'd almost certainly trip over it.
To get the feeling of being in a creepy wizarding alley, they've put Knockturn Alley inside, though with all the windows for store fronts, it feels as if you are still outside, but in a really shady neighborhood. There are two places you can slip into this dark wizard area, which may not be that easy to spot if you aren't looking for it.
Now, you may have figured it out already, but if not, I love Halloween and creepy things and I wanted to know more about Knockturn Alley when reading the books. I was intrigued by the kinds of macabre and evil things these shops were selling. I mean, that one witch was selling what looked like fingernails. What were those for? Well, I probably won't find out, but the wares of Knockturn Alley are varied and the windows are just as thought out and packed as in the rest of the Wizarding World.
You'll find poisons, bat meat, skeletons, shrunken heads, insects and more within this small shopping district, though they are all just for show. There's so much to look at, even in the darkness, that you may spend even more time there to see what's actually on display.
Obviously, Knockturn Alley was built around that iconic dark wizard shop Borgin and Burkes. It's the only place to shop here, but there's so much to see that it's not disappointing at all. Almost everything on display is for sale, so you can pick up a shirt touting the dark arts, a hefty locket horcrux replica or even a skull for your personal enjoyment. Whether you're in the market for a dark artifact or not, you'll want to make a visit here just to see some of the things you've read about.
I kind of love the horned skull on display, but the Death Eater Masks and jars full of weird potion ingredients really gave me some inspiration for my own Harry Potter party decor.
Remember the vanishing cabinet? It's here! Step a little closer to it and you can hear that little bird chirping away inside. You'll also see the fake Moody's seven-lock trunk. It's just rattling away under a table full of other great stuff and next to a cabinet full of a bunch of freaky artifacts. Yes, that doll's eyes did just move. Ever wondered what the Hand of Glory looked like? Well, it's in a different cabinet, along with a werewolf claw. Want to see that cursed necklace that Katie Bell somehow ended up with? It's here as well.
Don't forget to look up here, too. There's even more up there, like that hideous troll foot umbrella stand Tonks kept knocking over in Grimmauld Place. You want one now, don't you? I didn't ask if it was for sale, but I probably couldn't afford it anyway (or get it home on the plane if I could). This shop wasn't huge, but since every nook and cranny is full of crazy stuff, it actually felt much bigger than it is.
Some of my photos are lightened up a bit to actually show you what the picture is of, because the alley is actually that dark. I probably wouldn't head in alone, because sometimes it's hard to just spot another visitor in the gloom, and I'm a wuss who's afraid of the dark. Aside from that, it's definitely a must-see, because you can totally feel how uneasy and lost Harry felt when he accidentally ended up in Borgin and Burkes instead of the Leaky Cauldron. Thank goodness for Hagrid!
Knockturn Alley is a great respite from the heat and satisfies most of your curiosities about the darker wizarding shopping area. Next up, we'll be talking food! What were you most awed by in Knockturn in the books or movies?