Located in King's Cross Station, London's Platform 9 ¾ is quite possibly the most famous railway platform in the world - and it doesn't even exist. (Well, not really…)
Based off of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series, Platform 9 ¾ is a fictional train platform located in King's Cross Station in London. In order to be transported to the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry Potter and the rest of the students at Hogwarts would have to board the Hogwarts Express at Platform 9 ¾ to get to their school in the north of Scotland.
In order to do so, the students would need to ride a train which could only be accessed from a platform which couldn't be seen by the non-magic folk (also known as “Muggles”). The Hogwarts students would have to run through the brick wall underneath the Platform 9 ¾ sign, and would then be magically transported to the Hogwarts Express.
Due to popular request, station authorities at King's Cross Station decided to place a Platform 9 ¾ sign up in honour of J.K. Rowling's hit series, and since then Harry Potter fans from all over the world have ventured to King's Cross Station to snap a photo of the famous platform sign (which is located between platforms 9 and 10).
In recent years, Warwick Davis (who played Professor Flitwick and Griphook in the Harry Potter films), decided to open up the The Harry Potter Shop at Platform 9 ¾ in King's Cross, which is located a stone's throw away from the Platform 9 ¾ sign. It was also decided to install a half-trolley in the brick wall underneath the platform sign, which looks exactly like the trolley Harry Potter and the Weasley family used to transport their luggage through the train station.
Platform 9 3/4 Highlights
Gone are the days where tourists would simply walk up to the area between Platform 9 and 10 at King's Cross Station and snap a photo of the Platform 9 ¾ sign. Today, visitors can not only find The Harry Potter Shop at Platform 9 ¾ (which is packed full of all sorts of Harry Potter memorabilia), they can even get a member of staff to snap a photo of them underneath the sign.
The Harry Potter Shop at Platform 9 ¾ offers professional photo-taking sessions where visitors can choose which house scarf to wear during their photo shoot, and they can even choose a wand to use as a prop as well. Staff will then lead you to the half trolley and tell you when to hold your scarf up and jump for the photo to make it look as if you're being transported through the platform.
If you don't feel like paying for a professional photo, you can always get a friend or someone standing nearby to snap a photo of you underneath the sign instead.
If you have some extra time, make sure you explore The Harry Potter Shop at Platform 9 ¾ in its entirety, as here you will discover a ton of different Harry Potter-related memorabilia like time turners, horcruxes, wands, games, Hogwarts school jumpers in the four different house colours, robes and much more.
- If you want to beat the busy crowds, try to visit as early as possible (even before 9 a.m.) and avoid visiting during school holidays.
- If you want to jump the queue, The Harry Potter Shop at Platform 9 ¾ offers a VIP photo pass landyard which costs £20, and allows you to skip to the front of the queue as soon as you arrive.
- If you're travelling alone and want your photo taken underneath the Platform 9 ¾ sign but don't want to pay for a professional photo, be very careful about who you choose to snap a photo of you, as it's not uncommon for robbers and pick-pocketers to linger around the area.