It’s spooky season again – wizard you believe it! – and what better way to celebrate than by visiting some of the spookiest UK filming locations? From Platform 9 ¾ in Kings Cross to Dover Castle in Kent, we’ve made a list of top UK locations that have appeared in some of the world’s favourite magical films and TV shows. It’s the perfect time to mark the opening of our newest hotel in Alnwick too – not only is it due to open on October 21st, but it’s also just a short drive away from Alnwick Castle, where scenes for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone were shot back in 2001!
Visit these top spooky filming locations for a spellbinding Halloween
A spokesperson for Premier Inn said:
“This time of year is perfect for snuggling up and watching a favourite movie or TV show, however it’s also still a great time to get out and enjoy exploring the UK. Our list of family favourite movies and their locations is perfect for Halloween or even planning a spooky break with the family. We hope it inspires lots of people this Autumn to plan trips to make the most of half term and beyond.”
Most of the wizarding wonders on our list are famous around the world, and all of them have had scenes shot right here in the UK. So what better reason to discover somewhere new on half term breaks than by exploring the settings of some much-loved supernatural shows? Even if you’re not planning any spooky UK getaways though, October is still the perfect time to check in with your favourite witches and wizards, so snuggle up, tuck into some Halloween goodies, and watch one of these family friendly suggestions with the kids.
Top spellbinding family-friendly films and TV shows to watch this Halloween half term:
Merlin TV Series (2008-2012) – 7.9
Coming in at the top of our list is the family friendly BBC TV series Merlin. Starring Colin Morgan in the title role, this popular series follows the adventures of the young wizard Merlin, and it’s an ideal boxset to tune into when you’re looking for something to watch with the kids this October.
UK filming location – Neath Abbey
Nearest Premier Inn – Port Talbot Premier Inn
The Harry Potter movie series (2001-2011) – 7.7
No list of famous witches and wizards would be complete without mentioning The Boy Who Lived. For many families, the world-famous Harry Potter film franchise is one of the best loved wizarding stories, and many scenes from the series have been filmed right here in the UK.
Alnwick Castle was the location for many iconic scenes of Hogwarts – and we’ll be opening a brand-new Premier Inn hotel nearby on October 21st, perfect for Potterheads who want to visit the Grand Hall.
Fans will find plenty of other UK locations to experience the wizarding world, too – visit King’s Cross station and get a photo of you entering Platform 9 ¾, take a trip to Goathland station – the setting for Hogsmeade station in the movies – or explore St George’s Hall in Liverpool where scenes for the Fantastic Beasts movies were shot.
UK filming location – Glenfinnan Viaduct & Steal Falls
Nearest Premier Inn – Fort William Premier Inn
UK filming location – Kings Cross Station
Nearest Premier Inn – Kings Cross Premier Inn
UK filming location – St. George's Hall
Nearest Premier Inn – Liverpool City Centre (Lime Street) Premier Inn
UK filming location – Leadenhall Market
Nearest Premier Inn – London Bank (Tower) Premier Inn
UK filming location – Goathland Station
Nearest Premier Inn – Scarborough North Bay Premier Inn
UK filming location – Alnwick Castle
Nearest Premier Inn – Alnwick Premier Inn (opening October 21st 2022)
Worst Witch TV series (2017-) – 7.3, Worst Witch movie (1986) – 7.0
The 1986 Worst Witch film starring Tim Curry and a young Fairuza Balk was filmed in several spots across the country, including at top UK attractions like St Michael’s College in Tenbury Wells. Plus, with the latest book adaptation reimagined for a new audience on the small screen, young fans of the BBC series may recognise several locations of Mildred Hubble’s spooky shenanigans across Cheshire, including Peckforton College and Adlington Hall.
UK filming location – St Michael’s College, Tenbury Wells
Nearest Premier Inn – Kidderminster Premier Inn
UK filming location – Peckforton College and Adlington Hall
Nearest Premier Inn – Macclesfield North Premier Inn
The Witches (1990) – 6.9, The Witches, (2020) – 5.3
The original adaptation of Road Dahl’s classic The Witches starring Anjelica Huston was released in 1990 and featured picturesque UK locations including Headland in Newquay. The 2020 remake with Anne Hathaway also showcased some scenic spots in Britain, with several spellbinding scenes being filmed in Virginia Water in Berkshire.
Maleficent (2014) – 7.0
Another Disney hit that’s perfect for Halloween. This magical 2014 move starred Angelina Jolie in the title role, and Maleficent was filmed in top UK locations including Petworth Park, West Sussex and some scenes in Ashridge Estate woods.
Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971) – 7.1
Fans of the Disney classic Bedknobs and Broomsticks will be thrilled to hear that the film has now been adapted into a musical, which is currently touring the UK! The original 1971 movie starring Angela Lansbury was mainly filmed in a film studio, but several scenes were shot in the famous Dorset attraction Corfe Castle – why not visit for yourself and see if you can cast your own Substitutiary Locomotion spell!
UK filming location – Corfe Castle
Nearest Premier Inn – Poole North Premier Inn
Into the Woods (2014) – 5.9
With its all-star cast starring Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt and James Corden, it’s easy to see why Into the Woods is a hit with lovers of magical musicals.
This 2014 film featured several UK beauty spots including Hambleden Village, Dover Castle and Windsor Great Park – perfect attractions to visit on UK short breaks this October!
UK filming location – Hamblesdon Village
Nearest Premier Inn – High Wycombe Premier Inn
UK filming location – Dover Castle
Nearest Premier Inn – Dover Central Premier Inn
UK filming location – Windsor Great Park
Nearest Premier Inn – Staines-upon-Thames Premier Inn
Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe TV series (1988) – 7.2
Although much of the latest movie adaptation was filmed in New Zealand, those who remember the 1988 Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe BBC TV series may be surprised to know that several scenes from the original were actually filmed across the UK. Fans of this magical series might like to see the famous Narnian castle of Cair Paravel – filmed at Manorbier Castle near Tenby – and some of the Narnian snow scenes were filmed in the snowy Cairngorm Mountains!
Return to Oz (1985) – 6.7
Another throwback to some classic 80s witchcraft is the lesser known 1985 sequel Return to Oz. This movie saw star of the moment Fairuza Balk filming some spooky scenes over on Salisbury Plain and Whippendell Wood in Watford!
Nanny McPhee (2005) – 6.6
Last but not least on our spooky little list is the light-hearted, family friendly movie about the magical Nanny McPhee, starring Emma Thompson and featuring some scenes shot on the Penn House Estate in Buckinghamshire.
UK filming location – Penn House Estate
Nearest Premier Inn – High Wycombe Central Premier Inn
Would you boo-lieve it
All ratings based on IMDB scores and averages for movie series