The Christ Church staircase in Oxford served as one of the iconic filming locations for the Harry Potter film series. Specifically, the staircase in Christ Church‘s Bodley Tower was used to represent the grand staircase of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry! This particular staircase is featured prominently in several Harry Potter films, including “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” (released as “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” in the United States).
Follow this link to see a complete list of Oxford Harry Potter filming locations and how to visit them.
What Is The Staircase from Harry Potter?
In the films, the Christ Church staircase was utilized to depict the majestic entrance to the Great Hall at Hogwarts. As the students make their way into the Great Hall, the impressive architecture of the staircase, with its stone balustrades and Gothic details, creates a visually striking and magical entrance.
In the books, the staircase is not described as a standalone thing, but here’s a little extract talking about similar castle features:
“There were a hundred and forty-two staircases at Hogwarts: wide, sweeping ones, narrow, rickety ones, some that led somewhere different on a Friday, some with a vanishing step halfway up that you had to remember to jump…“
The visually stunning and intricate architecture of the Christ Church staircase, with its stone balustrades and Gothic details, provided a fitting and magical backdrop for the world of Harry Potter.
Christ Church College: The Inspiration for Hogwarts
The choice of Christ Church for filming locations in the Harry Potter series was influenced by the college’s grandeur and historic appeal. The architecture of Christ Church, with its stunning cloisters, dining hall, and staircases, provided a captivating backdrop that aligned seamlessly with the enchanting world of Hogwarts.
Thus, the Christ Church staircase stands as a tangible connection between the real-world beauty of Oxford and the fantastical realm of Hogwarts, contributing to the visual splendor and immersive atmosphere of the Harry Potter films.
If you want to learn more about Christ Church College, here’s a link to the college’s page:
So, Was Harry Potter Filmed In This Staircase?
YES! Parts of the Harry Potter film series were indeed filmed on the staircase at Christ Church in Oxford. The Bodley Tower staircase in Christ Church College was used to represent the grand staircase of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
This staircase is notably featured in scenes depicting the entrance to the Great Hall at Hogwarts in several films, including “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” (released as “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” in the United States).
Can you Visit this Harry Potter Filming Location?
Of course, you can! The colleges of Oxford University and the streets of Oxford city that inspired the books and movies are all open to the public all year round. You don’t even need to book your visit; you can just drop by, pay a small entrance fee, and be transported right to Hogwarts.
This applies also to Christ Church College, which is open practically all day long. If you’re unsure whether the college will be open, you can check their website here and/or book a ticket in advance for £10. There are also guided tours every 30 to 60 minutes.
You can use this map to find your way around the different Harry Potter filming locations:
Looking for Harry Potter Tours and Experiences?
Are you looking for a more organised way to enjoy Oxford (and London) through some magic lenses? Here’s a small collection of tours and experiences that transport you to the spellbinding realms of wizardry and wonder. Immerse yourself in the magic that inspired J.K. Rowling’s iconic series as you explore the captivating landscapes of Oxford and London, where the wizarding world comes to life:
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Books to Help You Explore Harry Potter Filming Locations
Filmmakers chose various locations in and around Oxford, including Christ Church College, to bring to life the enchanting settings of J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world on the big screen.
If you want to learn more about the staircase and other Harry Potter filming locations, and learn why J.K Rowling and the creators of the films were so inspired by Oxford, here are some good books I recommend: