We just got back from Disneyland for the opening weekend of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Of course, it feels a lot more like we just got back from the depths of space. The realistic details of the Black Spire Outpost need to be seen to believed. But until you have the chance to visit for yourself, you can take a look at what we experienced and read our top tips for visiting the planet of Batuu.
Stay on Property
Typically we don’t recommend staying on property. Unlike Disney World, where booking a Disney hotel is a must, we usually recommend staying off property at a “good neighbor hotel” near Disneyland. These budget hotels save you money, and because of the small size of the Anaheim resort, they are located just as close, if not closer, than some of the Disney owned hotels.
However, due to the anticipated crowding this summer, special reservations for Galaxy’s Edge were required in addition to our park ticket. Reservations will be required until June 24th, 2019.
Because these reservations were extremely limited, the only way to guarantee a spot was to book accommodations at one of the three Disney hotels. Not wanting to miss out, we chose to stay at Disney’s Paradise Pier for this trip.
Looking to visit after June? Although the additional reservation will not be required for Galaxy’s Edge later in the summer, we still recommend booking your hotel room at a Disney owned property for awhile. As of now, the Disneyland website states that “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will not be available during Extra Magic Hour or Magic Morning at Disneyland Park” but because of the hype, we have a feeling a reservation at one of the Disney hotels will still help. With early access into the main gates, you can at least make your way toward Galaxy’s Edge before other guests do.
Get Ready to Wander
Although Disney released an official map prior to the opening, Galaxy’s Edge is not designed like the other classic lands.
In order to give Batuu an immersive feel, the various shops are restaurants are unlabeled. Additionally, if you are looking for directions back into Disneyland park, you won’t find them. After all, the citizens of Batuu are from a remote outpost planet. They have never heard of Disneyland…but if you really need to translate, these few phrases will help:
Off Planet: anything outside of Batuu (i.e Disneyland)
Credits: the exchange rate of Republic Credits to USD is 1:1, but Batuaans have never heard of dollars, so don’t ask.
Passports/Credit Reductions: your Disney Annual Passes still entitle you to a discount on any non customized merchandise, but don’t expect shopkeepers to know what an annual pass is. (As you can probably see, the cast members won’t break character!)
In addition to unlabeled stores, you’ll find that the city planners of Batuu favored a circular design. This helps the land to feel more expansive, making it easier to get lost. But no worries! We have outlined the main attractions below:
One of the first things that caught our attention when rumors of Galaxy’s Edge began to circulate was the prospect of a Cantina. When we found out that cosmic cocktails did exist, we put it at the top of our to-do list. Unfortunately the line was so long, it was closed off before we could even attempt to get in. I suppose this is our excuse to visit again!
TIP: Because of long lines for experiential shopping and dining, we recommend choosing your “must see” destination right away and queuing up for it when you first enter the land. The lines for the Smuggler’s Run ride is very manageable, so don’t worry about that until later.
The age old favorite, Blue Milk, or the newly popularized Green Milk (as seen in The Last Jedi) is available just outside the right entrance. The best part? It is dairy free! The blue is more of a tropical flavor and the green is a bit more floral and earthy tasting. We liked both and even got seconds!
TIP: If you get a fresh batch of milk, it’s best to let it melt a bit. The consistency and flavor is more enjoyable when it gets a little warmer as opposed to when it’s icy.
Docking Bay 7 Food and Cargo
As to be expected, the food was out of this world! The Docking Bay 7 has all of your quick service needs in case you get hungry during your visit. But don’t expect classic American fried chicken. Batuaans prefer “Fried Endorian Tip-Yip”. We also enjoyed the garden loaf and both galactic desserts featured on the menu. We couldn’t decide between the three specialty beverages so we ordered all of them just to compare the flavor. The Moof Juice was our favorite, but the Batuubucha (on tap Kombucha) was a close second.
Perhaps the most anticipated restaurant at Galaxy’s Edge was Ronto Roasters. This grill sells wraps, and jerky snacks. The wraps were a bit slow off the spit when we visited, so we tried the the sweet and savory flavors of jerky instead.
As Watto says, “I’m a Toydarian. Mind tricks don’t work on me, only money.” Be prepared to spend some serious credits at this shop filled with handcrafted goods.
Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities
Are you a fan of ancient Jedi relics? If so, Dok is the antiquity dealer for you. His den is full of collectors items for every fan. We enjoyed this shop quite a bit.
Peek at strange creatures from around the Galaxy and you may even find a fur ball to take home!
Black Spire Outfitters
Of course, if you feel inspired to purchase apparel, there are shops for that too! We were impressed with the quality of each robe and tunic, but we didn’t purchase any ourselves.
The most incredible part of our visit was our appointment with Savi. If you are interested in getting a custom lightsaber, you should make your way to this workshop first. You will need to choose your saber type and return at the appointed time. We won’t give away too many secrets about this experience, but we did here another guest describe it as “spiritual” and we won’t disagree! After all, it only takes one spark of hope to light up the darkness, and in these times, hope is universally needed.
Another great experience was building our custom droid . Again, be prepared to drop some serious credits at this location. But rest assured, you’ll find the droid you’re looking for!
Download the Disney Play App
While you wander through this new land, don’t forget to interact with the landscape too. If you aren’t familiar, the Disney Play app is designed to make queuing more interactive by giving guests the opportunity to complete challenges while they wait in line, but just like everything else in Galaxy’s Edge, the app becomes incredibly immersive. You can use it throughout the land to complete jobs, “hack” controls and trade with others. While playing, you can chose to help the resistance efforts or reinforce the First Orders power.
Don’t Expect The Classics
Speaking of the First Order, it is good to keep in mind where on the Star Wars timeline your trip to Batuu occurs. The days of the Empire and Rebel alliance are long gone. And although the centerpiece of the land is Han’s ever enduring Millennium Falcon, the classic crew is nowhere to be found. We did miss the old gang, and would have felt more nostalgic if we heard the Empirical March or other classic themes while walking around. But even without these nods, we know that the core of Star Wars is about creating a better future. And as long as the future includes epic memories with each other, we are ready to take that jump. Jump to light speed that is!