As the year draws to a close and 2014 pokes its head over the horizon, Harry Potter fans in Japan are finding it harder to contain their excitement over the summer opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios, Osaka. Fan photos on Twitter show how the progress is going, with an awesome train service and a near-complete replica of Hogwarts Castle that looks exactly like the one on film.
▼ What better way to start conjuring up excitement than with specially adorned trains ready to transport you to Harry’s world?
▼ The trains are currently serving passengers on the Osaka loop line. And you don’t have to run through a brick wall to catch one!
▼ All aboard the Gryffindor carriage. Slytherins move along!
▼ Watch the Harry Potter train pull up to the station:
▼ When complete, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Japan will be the only one outside of the States, second only to the one at Universal Studios Orlando.
▼ Just like its Florida counterpart, the Japanese version will recreate an entire town devoted to the world of Harry Potter, including Ollivanders Wand Shop, a tavern serving pints of Butterbeer and a toy store offering Screaming Yo-yos.
▼ The scaffolding is slowly being taken down, revealing the impressive castle at the centre of the 45 billion yen (US$444 million) theme park.
Erecto! If only a spell could erect the entire complex at the wave of a wand. Looks like the magic won’t start until summer but we’ll be looking for more fan photo updates until then!