Harry Potter Cafe Hongdae
Do you like Harry Potter (and cute cafes)? Then make this a Must Visit place if you ever find yourself in Seoul!
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A brand new Harry Potter themed cafe named after the famous train platform opened in Seouls’ trendy district Hongdae that is known for its numerous themed coffee shops. The cafe’s full name is 9 ¾ King’s Cross and it is located just opposite of the popular apparel store Aland. (You can find full directions on how to get there at the bottom of the page.) And trust me, this place is on a whole different level when it comes to themed coffee shop experiences.
*In Korea 1F / first floor is equivalent to European ground floor*
To be honest, calling this place a cafe is a massive understatement. It is a six (!!!) storey building that is Harry Potter themed from the basement and all the way up to the sixth floor. That makes for SEVEN!! floors fully decorated in style of Harry Potter books and movies and numerous rooms filled with Harry Potter movie soundtrack!!!
At the time of our visit, two weeks from the opening, only Magical Liquid Medicine OR Dessert & Food (1F) and Wizard Cafe (2F) floor have been opened and since then Hog’s Head Pub & Cafe (B1), Banquet Hall (3F) and Wizarding Dormitory (4F) have been opened as well. Floors 5F (Department of Magic) and 6F (Death Wizard Infested Area) are still under construction.
I dare to say that once all of the floors become accessible to public, this is probably going to be the largest Harry Potter themed cafe in the world. Let me know on my Instagram if I am wrong.
The building is impossible to miss. The front is designed to look like a platform including big 9 ¾ and Kings Cross signs and four house flags representing the Hogwarts houses.
There are a few photo opportunities available outside. First being the entry to the Hog’s Head which was still closed at the time of our visit but I believe it has been opened since.
Of course don’t forget to take a pic in front of the famous “half way through the wall” trolley. (Jumping required;))
Next to the entry there are cute windows designed as the windows of the shops in Diagon Alley.
There is no fee for taking photos outside of the cafe. However, they operate one order per person policy inside the cafe which I think is completely fair.
B1 - Hog’s Head Pub & Cafe
It is a basement bar where you can enjoy magic themed drinks in Hog’s Head themed basement. This room was still under construction when we were visiting.
1F (Ground Floor) - Magical Liquid Medicine OR Dessert & Food
The cafe is super popular and be prepared to queue for the entry. When it is your turn to enter the cafe, you will be invited inside and asked to order at the counter. Coffee prices start at 4 500 KRW for an espresso and go all the way up to 6 500 KRW for chocolate and green tea latte. If you are lucky they might also have butterbeer (non alcoholic) but when we were there it was sold out. (I did have butterbeer before at the Warner Bros studios in London and I didn’t really like to be honest.)
Harry Potter Cafe Hongdae Menu Prices
I did find prices to be reasonable and in line with pricing of other themed cafes in Seoul. Prices were within the same price range as the ones at than pink vending machine cafe Zapangi. You can read about my visit here.
Whilst you are waiting for your brew to be ready, you can explore the ground floor. Opposite of the counter you can find wall filled with wands that looks like it was taken right out of the Ollivanders Wand Shop.
Don’t forget, the wand chooses the wizard!
There is another room on the ground floor that you have to cross to get to the staircase that leads to the other floors where the main seating areas are.
In this second room you can find the Mirror of Erised and there are also complementary gowns of all four houses provided so you can dress up and get some snaps in your house’s robes. There are two things you should be aware of when taking photos in this room.
Fist: There is a sign prior to entering the room that asks the visitors to not take more than three minutes in there taking photos to allow other guests to enjoy the room as well and to prevent overcrowding.
Second: The lightning is very poor. Practice snapping a few pics whilst you wait for your turn to get the best photos out of the experience.
2F - Wizard Cafe
Once your drinks have been prepared, you can take them up to the first floor where you will find a large room completely decorated as what I assume is Gryffindor common room.
Enjoy your drink and don’t forget to take a lot of pictures! Whilst the dimmed lights provide cozy atmosphere, it is not the best lightning for photos I’m afraid.
3F - Banquet Hall
4F - Wizard Dormitory
5F - Department of Magic (Under construction)
6F - Death Wizard Infested Area (Under construction)
Opening Hours - Cafe (1 - 4F)
Monday to Thursday: 11:30 AM - 10 PM
Friday to Sunday: 9:30 AM - 10 PM
Opening Hours - Pub (B1)
Sunday - Thursday: 7:30 PM - 5:00 AM
Friday - Saturday: 6:30 PM - 5:00 AM
Yes, you can party in a Harry Potter themed pub until 5AM!
*Opening times last checked in February 2019*
How To Get There
In contrast to Zapangi and Black and White 2D cafes, Harry Potter cafe in Seoul is located in popular Hongdae district. When we were visiting the place, it was so new it didn’t even have a geotag and I had to follow the directions for Seoul Trick Eye Museum. Luckily, the location has now been recognised by Google maps. However, as I state it in my blog post that talks about 14 things you should know when traveling to Seoul, do not rely too much on Google Maps as it is very unreliable due to the government’s restrictions to Google’s mapping services. Check out my blog post to see which apps you should use instead.
Take green underground line number 2 to Hongik University and use Exit 9 and follow the directions for the Trick Eye Museum or Aland Store. You will not be able to miss the huge Kings Cross themed building once you have reached your destination.
King's Cross Harry Potter Cafe
Address (English): 417 Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul, South Korea
Address (Korean): 서울특별시 마포구 서교동 417
Opening Times: Cafe: 11:30 AM - 10 PM Pub: 7:30 PM - 5 AM
Overall, as a big Harry Potter fan I have absolutely adored Kings Cross cafe in Hongdae and it is one of the top Harry Potter things to do in Seoul. The amount of details put in the cafe is really outstanding and of course the whole experience is enhanced with the soundtrack from the movies. I am definitely revisiting this place when I am back in Seoul to check out all the other rooms that have been opened since my last visit.
Make sure to get there early as the place is insanely popular and apparently the line starts before the store even opens! They only let a certain amount of people in the shop to prevent overcrowding which I think is a great idea. I would rather queue for a bit and then take my time to explore the place (and there is plenty to explore) than to be rushed into an overcrowded cafe.
Don’t forget to add this place on your itinerary if you love Harry Potter and you are planning on visiting Seoul in the near future!
Would you visit this cafe? Let me know in the comments below or on my Instagram.