My visit to Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge at Disney's Hollywood Studios
I recently had the opportunity to visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the brand new land that opened up in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Even though the land officially opened on August 29th, I was able to visit on August 17th as a part of the Annual Passholder previews.
Disney announced they would offer AP previews about 6 weeks before they opened sign up. So after daily internet stalking for a month and a half, I was able to sign my family and myself up for a 4-hour window.
Basics of the land:
The entrance to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is right next to Muppet*Vision 3D.
When you cross under the bridge at the entrance, you’re now a visitor to the planet, Batuu. You’ll notice that the castmembers always stay in character, so they may not know some basic vocabulary that you’re used to on earth.
For instance, I noticed they only had baseball hats for adults. When I asked if they sold any for kids, the castmember asked if I meant “younglings.”
On Batuu, they speak Aurebesh, so you may find some of the signage and castmember nametags hard to read. They did provide us a guide to translating, though.
What we ate in Galaxy’s Edge:
There are quite a few options for dining and snacks in this land, but I personally only tried two drinks.
Tatooine Sunset at Ronto Roasters is something I’d order every time I visit.
It’s iced tea, lemonade, melon, and blueberry. Sounds different, but it was super good. Just a little different than an Arnold Palmer you’re used to.
My son and I did try the signature Blue Milk (you can get alcoholic and non-alchoholic versions at the outdoor milk stand), but we couldn’t finish it.
It’s a sweet, plant-based milk and it was tasty for a few sips. But the flavor was so different, it really started to taste strange after a bit. At $8, it’s a pretty pricey drink considering that the Tatooine Sunset was only $5.50 and fantastic. I wouldn’t order it again.
Sidenote: we all do a little top-of-the-garbage-cans-eating in Disney World, right? That’s where I set my blue milk down to snap the picture above. Here’s a better image of them. How cool are they?! Just another awesome detail in the land.
Who we met on Batuu:
There aren’t traditional character meet and greets like you’re used to in the other parks.
Since you’re a visitor this planet, you’ll find the characters roaming around - just as they would if you were really there.
We saw Chewbacca walking through Black Spire Outpost, and we did get a quick chat in with Rey by the Millennium Falcon. And the Stormtroopers called my son a trouble maker, after they caught him sneaking up behind them, which was really fun!
What you’ll see and hear in Galaxy’s Edge:
I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not a huge Star Wars buff, but I’ll tell you - Disney really accomplished the feeling of being transported to another planet.
Your senses are totally involved in Batuu. The buildings and scenery are so high, you can’t see anything outside of the planet.
And you’ll hear the sound of other ships taking off and landing. I’ll put in a video below so you can hear what I mean.
One thing I was glad to experience was a small bout of rain. It was helpful to see where people could stand and ride it out. There were several overhangs and bridges you could hide under. Everyone had enough room to take shelter that I could see, and my son found a new place to stand, too! Ha!
As for the shops you’ll see, that’s quite the experience, too. When you enter the Black Spire Outpost, you’ll see an outdoor market with different stalls offering plenty of items. Everything from toys to snacks.
I really enjoyed my time here and came back to visit 2 more times before we left the land. This is also one spot where we saw Chewbacca roaming around.
What you’ll ride:
Eventually, there will be 2 rides in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Rise of the Resistance will open on December 5th, but for now I was able to ride Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run.
Basically what you do on Smugglers Run is board the ship with 5 other participants. Everyone is given a job.
There are 2 pilots, 2 gunners, and 2 engineers. You sit in 2 rows of 3 (pilot, then gunner, then engineers in the back). You’ll see a screen in front of you - not quite 180 degrees, I don’t think, but it felt like that. And when the ride begins - it’s a real video game. Depending on your position, you have buttons or levers to press or pull. What you and your teammates do matters. You’re given a ship score at the end, and an individual score. I didn’t do so great, but I had a ton of fun. :)
Before you board into the ride vehicle, you’re kept in a holding room on the ship where you’re able to explore a bit. That’s a really nice touch.
All in all, my visit to Batuu was fantastic. Heading over to Galaxy’s Edge would be a must do for me every trip, for sure. And I know it will be for you.