All photos (13)The Elephant House
The Elephant House
The Elephant House

The Elephant House

27 reviews
Coffee and Tea
Popular with:
  • 9.8
    Family Travellers
  • 9.0
    Foodies
  • 8.9
    Art & Design Lovers
  • 8.9
    Hipsters
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21 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EN, UK
+44 131 220 5355
http://www.elephanthouse.biz/
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This is where J.K. Rowling penned her super successful Harry Potter novels - apparently this is where I should have sat when I wanted to write a book! Ah, no matter how long I ... Read more
spend drinking coffee here, alas, no inspiration came, but either way, a great place for a quick coffee and cake, and ponder why some of us just simply have the literature talents.

Member Reviews(27)

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Pro 2018
Menlo Park

This is the place where J.K. Rowling wrote some of the Harry Potter books but not the first one.
Lots of tourists come and write on the walls of the bathroom. You can go in and take a picture without consuming something but they are asking for donation that J.K. Rowling will use then for a good cause every year.
You can write a letter to her and leave it at the coffe house. J.K. Rowling will come twice a year to collect them.

Recommended for:Family Travellers
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Pro 2018
Mountain View

Aside from being known as the cafe where JK Rowling conceived and wrote the first Harry Potter book, the cafe is really not anything super special.

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Singapore

This is the “birthplace” of Harry Potter. Nice cosy cafe. It’s a busy cafe so advisable to go in the odd hours or on a weekday at least. Do check out the toilet!

Recommended for:BackpackersHipstersArt & Design LoversSolo Female Travelers
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Sydney

Food and coffee was a bit slow. There was a massive line outside. The best part was going into the women’s bathroom. Wait until you see the JK Rowling dedications. Best ever!!

Recommended for:BackpackersHistory BuffsSolo Female Travelers
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Pro 2018
Menlo Park

Harry Potter fans - this unassuming coffee house is where JK Rowling sat, imbibed caffeinated beverages, and crafted the first book. Today, you are more likely to find the tables crowded with Chinese tourists than aspiring authors. The food is ok but nothing to write home about, and the coffee is good. But the best part is looking out the window to see the city’s ancient roofline that inspired the legend.

Recommended for:Family TravellersFoodiesHistory Buffs
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Pro 2018
Barcelona

The first time I went to the Elephant House, I had no idea it was an iconic Harry Potter spot. Yes, homage is paid to J. K. Rowling, but the place still has its own charm and funkiness. And the light fare and hot beverages I had were delicious.

Recommended for:Budget TravellersFamily TravellersBackpackers
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Local from Edinburgh

Trading on their association with Harry Potter at the expense of actually being a decent cafe. Service is notorious slow and uninterested

Recommended for:History Buffs
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A famous Edinburgh coffee shop frequented by J.K Rowling whilst she was writing the early Harry Potter novels.

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London

This is where J.K. Rowling penned her super successful Harry Potter novels - apparently this is where I should have sat when I wanted to write a book! Ah, no matter how long I spend drinking coffee here, alas, no inspiration came, but either way, a great place for a quick coffee and cake, and ponder why some of us just simply have the literature talents.

Recommended for:Family TravellersFoodies
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Kerrville

Besides the allure that this was a writing hotspot for JK Rowling, I wouldn't really suggest the location. They kept the cafe too warm and it felt a little too crowded as a result.

Recommended for:FoodiesStudentsHistory BuffsHipsters
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Pro 2018
Klang

This is American and Scotland Traditional Cuisine. May be you can try and will like it.

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Boston
Ambassador

It's a must for any Harry Potter nerd! JK Rowling started writing her first bits of the books here in the cafe. Now it is rather touristy, but I still enjoyed it.

Recommended for:FoodiesStudents
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Auburn

Delicious coffee! Come see where JK Rowling started writing Harry Potter! Filled with so many elephant items.

Recommended for:StudentsHipstersFoodiesArt & Design Lovers
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Clearwater

worth visiting but the best part is the bathrooms where HP fans have left their messages for JK Rowling.

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Pro 2018
New York City

Worth going to even if you aren't a big Harry Potter fan. The food and espresso are actually pretty good and the views from the back are memorable.

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Leesburg

We stopped in one evening for a cup of coffee and dessert, not knowing that it was a well known spot. Nothing fancy about thins place. Decent coffee, dessert was ok, and our waitress was nice when we first arrived. After we finished our drinks, and were looking to leave, it took us about 20 minutes to snag another waitress to grab our check. Not sure if we were there during shift change or what, but we never did see our waitress again. Overall, nothing special. Stop by if you're a Harry Potter fan just to say you did, but if you're just looking for a cafe, there are plenty others I've been to this week that I prefer.

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Pro 2018
London

Bit of a mixed bag. Has been cashing in on Harry Potter / JK Rowling fame for far too long, but does do a good coffee.

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Philadelphia

One of my favorite travel moments of all time happened in this café. I stopped here for dinner one evening and the only table that was open was the one where J. K. Rowling wrote the first two Harry Potter books. I took what was once her seat and peered out the window. The view was spectacular! I can definitely see how Edinburgh inspired her to write such an imaginative series of books.
The sun set behind the Edinburgh castle which sets upon a cliff. Below is an old and eery graveyard – Greyfriars Kirk to be exact. But what made this moment awesome was that there was an adorable and loving couple in the graveyard. After some snuggling, they simultaneously began doing Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” dance. They steps were in sync and their beat was spot on. So much so that I could hear the crazy 80’s synthesizers! Within moments, random individuals joined them in the graveyard and became apart of a joyous chorus line of “Thriller”. That’s when I realized that one of the coolest, unintended flash mobs invaded Greyfriars Kirk. It was a spectacle to be seen.
The cherry on top of this dinner and a show: The epic Portabella Mushroom sandwich! Served with balsamic vinegar and lettuce on a ciabatta role made this one of the best meals I’d ever had in Scotland!

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Limoges

The Elephant House is the birthplace of harry potter. Meaning...I was super excited about it. Although the place did not carry as much charm or magic as I expected (I think I was imagining the gryffindor common room) it was amazing to sit and sip a tea where JK Rowling spent so many hours. The cafe has a definite elephant motif and the food and coffee selection looked so appetizing. The bathrooms although modest are covered in inspiring scrawls of thanks to JK Rowling. Get a seat in the back and look out over the castle and contemplate des grands choses. Apparently this place is a tourist hot spot but in early march we looked as if we were the only ones taking pictures and writing there. Good to know its popular with locals too!

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Pro 2018
Bellevue
First to Review

The Elephant House is famous because this is where JK Rowling plopped down staring out the big picture window at the back receiving inspiration to write Harry Potter. This Birthplace of Harry Potter's service, however, is not so magical. Getting attention from the table service is a tough task and many menu items were not available. I'm not sure why I sat down in the first place. The furniture is not particularly comfortable, and the website has wrong information about the menu and hours. This was disappointing for what I expected, but can't be wrong for a quick cup of coffee.

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The Elephant House

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Aliases: The Elephant House, Elephant House Cafe, The Elephant House Cafe

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