I realized my dream of visiting Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry recently and, if you know me in any capacity, you know how much this means to me.
I love me the Harry Potter.
Although it is darn near close to perfect in every way, the magic of the experience dissolves when you have 200 muggles in your photos of the Honeydukes' shop window. Fortunately, this can all be solved with a simple solution that my brother and I came up with while complaining in front of the owl post next to Ollivander's.
Upon entering the Hogsmeade city limits, everyone must don a cloak. Of course, you are more than welcome to dress from head to toe in wizard appropriate attire - I'm certainly not going to stop you, but for the less dedicated just cover up those tank tops and cut-offs with a full length black cloak...and maybe a hat if you have especially muggle-looking hair.
There's the tiny hitch of it being located in Orlando which is basically the equivalent of living on the Sun during most of the year (and a black cloak seems like the least obvious choice in such temperatures), but I'm sure that can be remedied with a couple of billion dollar snow machines (small price to pay for authenticity) which was my only other point of contention. I can't fully enjoy the snow covered majesty of the Hogwarts' rooftop when I'm sweating like a Slytherin in church.
Surprisingly the one thing that I expected to disappoint did not - the Butterbeer. Sure, one could argue that everything tastes better when it's on draft at the Hog's Head Pub with a view of Gryffindor tower, but I'm pretty sure this actually tasted good. If you want to experience your own but can't make it to the heart of one of our country's least favorite states - then just follow this recipe. I swear on Godric Gryffindor's sword that it tastes as if Madam Rosmerta served it herself. But I can't do anything about getting you a giant turkey leg. You're on your own.
And pour one out for Fred Weasley while you're there.