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Themed trips are nowhere more popular anywhere than within the cruise industry where companies take the opportunity to indulge the cultural obsession of their passengers, whether it be Barbie, Hogwarts, or Metallica.
Six hundred Harry Potter fans, dressed in robes and clutching wands, are expected to embark on the inaugural four-night ‘Wizard Cruise’ on board the ship Golden Princess.
The first annual cruise will be organised by Whimsic Alley, a Los Angeles-based shop designed to resemble Diagon Valley, the fictional high street from the Harry Potter books and film series, and which sells various wizard and witch paraphernalia, from quills and wands to witches’ hats.
The shop, which also runs annual Harry Potter-themed camps, for both adults and children, says it aims to create a similar activity-filled experience for passengers on board the cruise.
“For the entire time they’re with us, they become students at a wizarding academy, subject to the challenges and ordeals inherent in that experience,” said Stan Goldin, Whimsic Alley’s founder.
Guests can expect to be “overwhelmed” with activity and “entertained practically around the clock”, added event coordinator Belinda Ervin.
The cruise, which departs from Los Angeles on November 27, will cost from £415 ($650) per person, including food, accommodation, and on-board entertainment and activities.
The Harry Potter sailing is the latest unusual themed cruise to be launched by the industry. Among the most bizarre is the annual “Cougar Cruise,” offering by SinglesTravelCompany.com and described as “five nights of fun for younger men/older women.” A number of firms sell nudist voyages, last year Carnival Glory hosted a first-night cruise based on the horror film series SAW, and Norwegian Epic has previously offered Star Trek-themed sailings.
And Telegraph Travel’s James Bedding recently joined P&O Cruises’ inaugural Strictly Come Dancing-themed voyage .