The Real People Who Live in the Harry Potter Castle

The Harry Potter movies used locations all over Britain, as well as a big helping of green screens, to create those magical movies that I, personally, watch on repeat every once in a while. (Read: Every weekend.)

One very important location was Alnwick Castle in Northumberland, England. Do you think you’ll recognize it? Read on!

The experience of visiting Alnwick Castle is a strange mix of reality and magic. Let’s hit the reality part first:

Alnwick is an actual family castle, meaning, people actually live here! That’s right, the Duke of Northumberland lives here with his family.

Harry Potter Alnwick castle


And even though they move the family into private parts of the castle during the day in order to open the cool parts to the public, there’s a good chance you’ll see the Duke or one of his daughters running around. The Duke is known for talking to tourists. (We think we saw him, but didn’t approach.)

Duke Ralphie

Portrait of the Duke by Allan Warren.
Via Wikipedia.org

It was hailing as we made the trek from the bus to the castle.

Harry Potter Alnwick castle

Seriously, guys? Could you have parked farther away?

But it let up right around here:

Harry Potter Alnwick castle

It’s an incredible castle.

Harry Potter castle Alnwick castle

With all the right castle-y parts:


Cannons …

Alnwick castle Harry Potter castle

Murder hole …

Harry Potter Alnwick castle

More cannons (seriously, do people ever attack from the other side?) …

Harry Potter Alnwick Castle

Topsy turvy seesaw thingy to trip up intruders (you step anywhere but the exact middle and you’re flippin’, bro!) …

As well as several stuffed dogs inside the living quarters where cameras were not permitted. I was told the former family pets (I counted no less than three) were always *ahem* kept around à‎ la Scrubs.

Oh, and don’t forget this lion that the castle claims has nothing to do with Gryffindor.

Harry Potter Alnwick castle

Psh. Yeah right, guys.

Another part of the reality of the Harry Potter castle is that Warner Brothers is, collectively, really an asshole!

Harry Potter Alnwick castle

Can you spot it?

That’s the entrance to the inner castle. And on the right there, those black dots around the arrowslit, are a few nail holes that Warner Brothers left behind. Way to keep up the integrity of history, guys.

After all, Alnwick was built in 1096. Let’s show a little respect!

Now, let’s get to the magic! Follow me here to learn about the Harry Potter side to Alnwick Castle!

Sincerely Annie

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  1. […] Castle has long been famous in England. But it got a whole new life in Hollywood a little over a decade […]

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