Hogsmeade Village is just steps away from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. On top of being home to famous attractions like Zonko’s Joke Shop, the Three Broomsticks, and the Shrieking Shack, it is also the only completely non-Muggle settlement in Britain. In the Harry Potter books and movies, we are given just a tiny glimpse of the village and its incredible history, having been founded over 1000 years ago.
With its rich history and charming aesthetic, Hogsmeade is as an escape from the daily trials and tribulations at Hogwarts, served as a safe haven for everyone’s favourite werewolf Remus Lupin, and provided readers and viewers with endless stories about Harry, Ron, and Hermione’s daring adventures.
You may have noticed that Hogsmeade is always snowy in the films—but have you ever wondered why? Can you name all of the passageways between Hogwarts and Hogsmeade? Did you know that Hogsmeade was once the location of a goblin rebellion during the middle ages?
The village is a panacea of fun facts and interesting bits of history, opening our minds to a more complete understanding of the enticing wizarding world of Harry Potter and friends.
Read on for the 15 Things You Didn’t Know About Hogsmeade.
15. It Was Founded By Medieval Wizard Hengist Of Woodcroft
Hogsmeade Village was founded not long after Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, around 993 A.D., by medieval red-haired wizard Hengist of Woodcroft. Fleeing from Muggle persecution, Hengist of Woodcroft founded Hogsmeade as a safe-haven for witches and wizards. The site of the Three Broomsticks is supposed to have served as the young wizard’s home, although this has never been proven.
Hengist of Woodcroft had previously attended Hogwarts and was a Hufflepuff celebrity, having been sorted into the house himself as a student. Despite the important role he played in wizarding history, we don’t hear a whole lot about Hengist of Woodcroft in the books or films, although he is on one of the first Chocolate Frog Cards that Harry Potter collects on his trip to school with the Hogwarts Express.
14. It Is The Only Completely Non-Muggle Settlement In Britain
According to Hermione Granger in the Prisoner of Azkaban, Hogsmeade is supposed to be the only completely non-Muggle settlement in Britain. Unlike magical settings like the village of Godric’s Hollow, Diagon Alley in London, and 12 Grimmauld Place in London, Hogsmeade is not required to share its buildings and landmarks with Muggles. This might be why it is so charming and quaint, having never had to take the same intense concealment measures as other magical locations in Britain.
While there is a possibility that other all-wizard and witch-dwelling communities exist in Britain, Hogsmeade is likely substantially larger than these, and is therefore famous in the wizarding community for being an area where magical folk can live in relative peace and freedom (which was the reason for Hengist of Woodcroft’s founding it in the first place!)
13. It Was Home To The Great Goblin Rebellion Of 1612
Even Hogsmeade has had its challenges, though– most clearly highlighted by the great Goblin Rebellion of 1612. It is again Hermione Granger who informs us of this interesting history, yet it represents a much wider issue in the magical worldgoblin emancipation and the long-time tensions between wizards and witches and goblins.
To many wizards, goblins are a lesser species than magical humans — a common theme in the wizarding world, and highlighted by the Fountain of Magical Brethren in the Ministry of Magic, which depicts a goblin, a house-elf, and a centaur staring lovingly up at a taller wizard and a witch. Unlike house elves, goblins have stood up to this discrimination and inequality, and have challenged this perception with their hyper-intelligence and impressive metalwork skills.
The Goblin Rebellion of 1612 was one of many goblin rebellions, although this one specifically may have been caused by a void in representation at Wizengamot. According to Hermione, “the inn” served as the headquarters for wizards and witches during the rebellion (whether this was the Hog’s Head Inn or the Three Broomsticks Inn is unknown).
12. There Are 8 Secret Passageways Between Hogwarts And Hogsmeade
Considering Hogwarts is supposed to be one of the safest places around, the existence of eight secret passageways between Hogwarts and Hogsmeade is rather astounding. Many of these passageways even Albus Dumbledore may not have known about for quite some time– that is, before Remus Lupin and Sirius Black likely informed him of them when they rejoined the Order of the Phoenix.
The eight passageways consist of the one-eyed witch statue (you must tap it with a wand and say Dissendium) to the Honeydukes cellar; a caved-in passage behind a mirror on the fourth floor to an unspecific place in Hogsmeade; from the Whomping Willow to the Shrieking Shack; and behind the statue of Gregory the Smarmy to another unspecified place in Hogsmeade. There are three other unspecified passageways, which are believed to be known to the Hogwarts caretaker, Filch.
These seven passageways are revealed to readers and viewers in the Prisoner of Azkaban, but we learn about a passageway between the Room of Requirement and the second floor of the Hog’s Head Inn behind a portrait of Ariana Dumbledore in The Deathly Hallows, discovered by Neville Longbottom and known by Aberborth and possibly Albus Dumbledore.
11. Hogsmeade Is Snowy 365 Days Of The Year
One of the most puzzling mysteries of Hogsmeade is that it is always snowy in the village, despite being just a short walk away from Hogwarts, which clearly experiences all four seasons in both the films and in the books.
In most of the films, Harry, Ron, and Hermione’s visits to Hogsmeade usually occurred in the wintertime, which explains why there would be snow in the village. However, during the Deathly Hallows Part II, fans aptly noticed that despite it being springtime and there being no snow at Hogwarts, Hogsmeade remained snowy during their visit there.
The mystery has been solved! According to the filmmakers, Hogsmeade is above the snow line. This means that there is snow in the area 365 days of the year, despite it being so close to Hogwarts. This is not a feature in the books, although it’s hard to deny how picturesque Hogsmeade is with snowy rooftops.
10. There Are Several Adorable German Towns That Look Identical To Hogsmeade
A snowy Hogsmeade makes even more sense if we consider the probable inspiration for such a quaint town— classic German Christmas towns.
There are several adorable German towns resembling Hogsmeade– the four most notable being Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Nördlingen, Erfurt, and Hildesheim.
Germany is famous for its beautiful, cozy, perfectly seasonal Christmas markets, beautiful squares, and charming architecture. Compared with with these four German towns, the similarities with Hogsmeade are so uncanny that you might just have to jump on a plane to Germany immediately and experience the ultimate Harry Potter setting—Hogsmeade at Christmastime!
Even in the summer, though, these towns are so adorable that you’re sure to feel as though you’re still in Hogsmeade as you walk along cobblestone streets, stopping at funny shops and tasting fabulous German sweets.
9. The Village Architecture Is Reflective Of Its Medieval Origins
Despite real-life similarities with German Christmas towns, the architecture of Hogsmeade buildings is actually supposed to be reflective of the fact that it was established over 1000 years ago, during the Middle Ages.
The medieval village consists of one main thoroughfare, High Street, which hosts several of the town’s most well-known shops like Honeydukes Sweetshop, Zonko’s Joke Shop, Scrivenshaft’s Quill Shop, and the Three Broomsticks.
Most of these businesses are situated in ancient homes of medieval style, with leaning houses and thatched rooftops, indicative of the village’s history. Notably, the Hog’s Head Inn most closely resembles a traditional medieval tavern, with a cramped and dark interior and a strange goat-like smell (according to Harry Potter) that could signal its age.
Also, as revealed in Pottermore, there’s a little cottage in the village where Minerva McGonagall once lived with her now-deceased husband, Dougal McGregor.
8. You Can Visit The Railway Station Where Hogsmeade Station Scenes Were Filmed
Fans who love visiting real set locations can find the location of the Hogsmeade train station in England. More specifically, the train station is situated on the North Yorkshire Moors Railways, serving the village of Goathland in the North York Moors National Park in North Yorkshire.
Hogsmeade station is depicted as small and simple, with a cluster of buildings, including a resting place for the train conductor. The station is located near a lake where boats await first years, although its location relative to Hogwarts is inconsistently placed in the films: in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Hogsmeade station is south of the castle, whereas in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Hogsmeade station appears to be situated in the Forbidden Forest to the east of the castle.
7. You Can Visit Hogsmeade In Florida, California, and Osaka, Japan
You might have heard of the incredible and famous Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Orlando Florida, where you can visit Hogsmeade and drink butterbeer at the Three Broomsticks or the Hog’s Head Inn, ride on the Hogwarts Express to Hogsmeade station, and purchase a wide range of magical items and paraphernalia from Hogsmeade’s very own Dervish and Banges.
But did you know you could do the same things in Osaka, Japan, and Los Angeles, California?
That’s right. At Universal Studios Japan, you’ll find much of the same sights and attractions as you would in Florida. The most recent recreation that just opened in April of 2016 can be found at Universal Studios in California. Despite being situated in famously hot climates, they do a convincing job at recreating Hogsmeade by having fake snow on the rooftops of the buildings.
6. Fred And George Had Wanted To Open Another Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes In Hogsmeade
Despite the vast array of shops and attractions at Hogsmeade village, it is lacking in one key store: Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes.
Known for its Extendable Ears, Skiving Snackboxes, Ten-Second Pimple Vanishers, and Pygmy Puffs, Fred and George Weasley’s legendary joke shop is finally introduced to fans in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.
In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, it is revealed that Fred and George had debated buying Zonko’s Joke Shop in Hogsmeade, although Fred explains their hesitation due to the fact that students were no longer being allowed to visit Hogsmeade on weekends.
After the Battle of Hogwarts and Fred’s death, we never know if George came through and opened a shop in Hogsmeade, although it is confirmed that Ron eventually quits his job as an auror and helps George with running Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes.
5. The Hog’s Head Plays A Recurring Role As The Plot Unfolds
Even though the Hog’s Head Inn is not the charming, bustling, cozy environment that the Three Broomsticks offers, Hogsmeade’s more seedy pub plays a far more important role in the overall plot line of the Harry Potter franchise.
For one, as has already been mentioned, the Hog’s Head Inn offers a secret passage to the Room of Requirement, on the second floor, behind the portrait of Ariana Dumbledore. The Hog’s Head is also where Professor Trelawney revealed her prophecy about the boy born at the end of July (which Voldemort understood to be Harry Potter, although this could very well have been Neville Longbottom as well), who had the power to defeat Voldemort.
4. Dumbledore’s Brother Is The Manager Of The Hog’s Head Inn
We are first introduced in detail to Aberforth Dumbledore in Harry Potter in the Deathly Hallows, although he is mentioned and hinted to in passing several times during previous books.
While we know about the Hog’s Head Inn long before this installment, the clues finally come together in Deathly Hallows when we learn that Aberforth Dumbledore, Albus Dumbledore’s brother, is actually the owner and barman of the Hog’s Head Inn.
Later on, we find out Aberforth has also been facilitating the rebellion from within Hogwarts by allowing Neville Longbottom and friends access to the tunnel between Hogwarts and the portrait of sister Ariana Dumbledore on the second floor of the Hog’s Head Inn. After participating in the Battle of Hogwarts, Aberforth continued managing the Inn.
3. The Haunted Status Of The Shrieking Shack Was A Perpetuated Myth
The Shrieking Shack is featured primarily in the Prisoner of Azkaban, when we learn of the abandoned house around Hogsmeade that is so “haunted” that even the ghosts at Hogwarts refuse to visit it.
However, near the end of the Prisoner of Azkaban, it is revealed that the haunted house of Hogsmeade was never truly haunted, and instead was a shelter for Remus Lupin while he was a student at Hogwarts.
In fact, the Shrieking Shack was actually built for Remus Lupin, as was the planting of the Whomping Willow, to ensure safety for both Hogwarts students and Lupin while he transformed into a werewolf. This idea was Dumbledore’s, and was facilitated by Hogwarts matron Madam Pomfrey.
2. Withdrawing Hogsmeade Privileges Was Used As Punishment For Hogwarts Student
Given the charm and excitement associated with Hogsmeade village, it comes as no surprise that visits for students was always of the utmost privilege. Because of this, administrators at Hogwarts could just as easily use the withdrawal of Hogsmeade visiting privileges as punishments. This was made clear in three separate instances.
In Neville Longbottom’s third year, he made a list of the passwords to Gryffindor’s common room that got into the hands of Sirius Black, whom everyone thought was a Voldemort supporter and serial killer. As a result, Neville’s punishment was to be banned from Hogsmeade for the rest of the year.
In Ginny Weasley’s sixth year (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows), she reformed Dumbledore’s Army. When she was found out, her Hogsmeade visiting privileges were also withdrawn.
1. There Are Several Shops And Grocery Stores For Wizards And Witches Who Live There Year-Long
Because Hogsmeade is given relatively little attention in the movies, apart from the Prisoner of Azkaban, we forget that it is the only all-wizard and witch-dwelling settlement in Britain. So what about this substantial group of witches and wizards living here, and going about their everyday lives in the village?
On top of the most famous and featured shops like Zonko’s, the Three Broomsticks, the Hog’s Head, Honeydukes, and the Shrieking Shack, there are also many shops that make Hogsmeade a livable place for wizards and witches. This includes Dervish and Banges (a shop for selling and repairing an assortment of magical instruments), an herbology shop called Dogweed and Deathcap, a music shop, a post office, a hairdressing salon, Gladrags Wizard wear for clothing, a potions shop, a branch of Ollivanders, a cauldron shop, a sporting goods shop, a greengrocer, a bookshop, and the headquarters of the radio station Wizarding Wireless Network.
After all, apart from being the highlight of many Hogwarts students’ lives, Hogsmeade is also a village like any other, and needs a local business community to keep thriving.
Did we miss something about Hogsmeade from Harry Potter? Let us know in the comments