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Harry Potter & Porto: The Similarities

Harry Potter & Porto: The Similarities

January 02, 2014

Discover the similarities between the books of Harry Potter and the city of Porto, the city that inspired J.K.Rowling. Travel to Porto now!

The books of the famous Hogwarts wizard Harry Potter has fascinated thousands and thousands of young people around the world. The magic of J. K. Rowling books infects even the most “fantastic” style skeptical and they has conquered the Seventh Art.

Indeed, everybody knows Harry Potter! But what few people know is the close connection between the books and the beautiful city of Oporto. These are just rumors but the parallels are quite visible. Then… what Harry Potter books and Porto have in common?

Harry Potter and Porto City: the secrets behind the books

It is not surprising that the beautiful city of Porto has had a great influence in the books of J. K. Rowling. Although the story of the little wizard was not developed in Portugal, the author spent some years in this country - where she was an English Professor – and, therefore, this city naturally shaped her work!

It is said that the first draft of the book of Harry Potter was written on a napkin from the legendary Magestic coffee. Rowling spent several hours writing Harry Potter’s first book on this characteristic coffee.

Magestic Coffee probably the place where the first book of Potter was bornGetting a little more into the books, there are some obvious parallels between Hogwarts library and the centennial Lello Bookshop, which enchants tourists from all over the world. Rowling was an assiduous client of this bookshop. In an article about the city of Oporto, published in the "Time" magazine, the journalist Jane Knight explained that the glamorous red staircase in the center of this bookshop is so magical that, despite not moving like the staircase of the books, it seems to fit perfectly with Hogwarts School.

Knight also pointed out that "it wouldn’t be surprising to see Harry Potter and Hermione in that lovely setting, with walls lined with books, stained glass ceiling, elaborated decorations in plaster and decorative columns in white and pink."

Rowling was an assiduous client of Lello Bookshop and the library of Hogwarts seems quite similarFurthermore, the famous and evil Salazar Slytherin, the big villain and enemy of Harry Potter, was described like the Portuguese dictator António de Oliveira Salazar. And if you ever wondered what kind of clothes Harry Potter wears, we can tell you that this Hogwarts costume is not unique. It seems evident in these books that the costume of the students of Hogwarts is very similar to the academic costume worn by students of Porto University (and other Portuguese Universities). It is an old and academic tradition and in Portugal they call it “traje”.

University students wearing "traje". It is very similiar to the costume of Hogwarts

Visit the city of Porto!

Do you want to discover the city that inspired J. K. Rowling and her books? Join us and we lead you through the city where probably Harry Potter was born. These are our suggestions (or custom your tour):