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The 6 things you need to see and do at Disneyland’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

Best things to do Disneyland Star Wars Galaxy's Edge
Photograph: Michael Juliano

In a galaxy here and now, Disneyland’s Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge—a Star Wars-themed land within the theme park—is finally upon us. With 14 acres of terrain, attractions, characters and even a life-size Millennium Falcon you can pilot, the galactic trading center of Black Spire Outpost can feel a little overwhelming on first visit.

Thankfully, we’ve been sent out as scouts ahead of the May 31 opening. Our mission? To infiltrate Black Spire, rub elbows with the Resistance and escape the evil forces of the First Order to provide you with all the intel you need to have the best interplanetary trip to Batuu possible. There are hours of sights, sounds, activities and smells that transport you to the new planet, but some are more of a must than others.

Whether you’ve secured your reservation and you’ll be joining just after opening day, or you’ll be landing on planet Batuu once the reservation mandate lifts on June 24, here’s what you need to see, taste and experience at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

 

Photograph: Courtesy Disney Parks/Kent Phillips

Drink with smugglers and rebels at Oga’s Cantina

Sure, we’re all about great food and cocktails, but even if we weren’t, the buzzing bar in Galaxy’s Edge is the first place we’d hit up on every visit. After all, where else can you catch a Droid DJ set and mingle in Batuu’s seedy underbelly? The awe-inspiring Oga’s Cantina is open to visitors of all ages, which means that not only is there beer, cider, wine and some fantastically creative, bubbling, steaming and fizzing cocktails on tap—this spot also offers non-alcoholic options, such as the tropical Cliff Dweller made with coconut, citrus, hibiscus and ginger ale in a souvenir porg tiki mug. 

The doors to Oga’s Cantina slide open from the park’s launch to close, meaning you can start your day with a spiked beverage (hey, they’ve even got cold brew). Just be sure to keep your blasters holstered; there’s tons of detail everywhere you look, including holes in the walls from past shootouts. For a peek inside—and everything you need to know—we’ve got a deep dive into Oga’s right over here.

Photograph: Courtesy Disney Parks/Joshua Sudock

Pilot the fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy on the Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run ride

If you need to smuggle goods, there’s no better vessel than the Millennium Falcon. Han Solo’s infamous ship made the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs, so the legend goes, and in the first of two attractions to open in Galaxy’s Edge, you can pilot the old bucket of bolts for a similar mission. Once you loop your way around the exterior of the gargantuan and equally impressive Falcon, you’ll find yourself in the workshop of the Clone Wars’ Hondo Ohnaka: a smuggler with quite the bounty on his head. 

The Falcon’s on loan from Chewie, and while he’s still got it in his possession, Hondo’s enlisted you to help steal cargo right out from the First Order’s nose. Before entering the iconic ship, you’ll get a debrief from Hondo himself, then receive your mission assignments: If you’re one of the two pilots, you’ll be steering the ship either up or down or side to side, boosting the Falcon and—most incredibly of all, for the pilot on the right side of the ship—shooting it into hyperspace. If you’ve found yourself as one of the two gunners, be sure to protect the ship with blasters and missiles when things go awry (because, come on, it’s Han’s ship—things always go a little haywire). Lastly, if you’re picked as one of the two engineers, you’ll be repairing damage and keeping the ship on track amid the chaos—one of the most deceptively tough assignments on the team. 

How well you work with the rest of your flight team not only influences the outcome of the mission and your score, but the gameplay itself—affecting how much fire you draw, and the damage sustained to the ship (which you’ll witness on your way out of the cockpit once you’ve landed). Try to get it back in one piece, OK?

Photograph: Courtesy Disney Parks/Richard Harbaugh

Stroll through the marketplace (and maybe even bring home an intergalactic pet)

Much of Galaxy’s Edge took its design cues from locales on Earth, and Black Spire’s marketplace is no exception. Modeled after the present-day bazaars and 19th-century depictions of Marrakesh and Istanbul, it’s an extremely curated attraction full of merch stalls and vendors hidden under awnings, lanterns and other immersive details. You’ll pass by scrawlings in aurebesh, the written language of Batuu—more on this later—and find some of the Star Wars franchise’s most eclectic souvenirs. 

Drop by the Creature Stall to catch a glimpse of some of the galaxy’s cutest animals, some napping in cages or sitting with a bellyful of fireflies. You can even take some home with you: a porg puppet perhaps, or the maniacal Kowakian monkey-lizard (you know, the one from Jabba’s palace), who can perch on your shoulder. 

Looking to blend in? Black Spire Outfitters vends the replica robes, tunics and belts of some of the galaxy’s most famous Jedi, and if all that strolling’s worked up an appetite, there’s Kat Saka’s Kettle, where there’s a sweet-and-savory, red-and-purple snack to be had—we hear it’s the closest thing to what Earthlings call “kettle corn.”

Photograph: Courtesy Disney Parks/Joshua Sudock

Join the Resistance by building your own lightsaber or Droid

The First Order has landed at Black Spire, so you can’t flaunt your #Resistance pride out in the open; that means building your weapons must be done in secret, so Savi’s Workshop—a build-your-own lightsaber experience—operates almost like a speakeasy. Savi’s helpers—called “gatherers”—might find you asking around in the general area, and stealthily, safely guide you to a hideout full of lightsaber parts where, for a fee of around $200, you’ll hand-assemble your weapon guided by themes of peace and justice; power and control; elemental nature; and protection and defense.

Each lightsaber will be unique to you, and be powered by a kyber crystal; you can remove these crystals and drop them into a separate souvenir—the holocron boxes, found in the nearby Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities—to learn more about the galaxy, plot points and your lightsaber’s characteristics. If that sounds a little overwhelming, Dok-Ondar’s got plenty of already-assembled “legacy” lightsabers (think: Mace Windu’s purple beam, Kylo Ren’s rough, sword-like saber) to choose from, and at a slightly lower cost. 

If you’d rather get yourself a companion than a weapon, you can even build your own Droid. Simply head to the Droid Depot to assemble a BB-series or R-series astromech, tinkering with every aspect right down to the beep-boop it makes with its voice box. 

Photograph: Courtesy Disney Parks/David Roark

Be like Luke and swig some blue (or green) milk

Believe it or not, it took years for the Galaxy’s Edge team to perfect one of Luke’s favorite beverages. The Jedi master is first seen enjoying blue milk in A New Hope, and then later—a little horrifically—drinking green milk straight from the teat of a thala-siren in The Last Jedi. But beyond its origins, Disneyland’s food experts didn’t know just how it would taste. After hundreds of iterations, they settled on a coconut and rice milk blend for both flavors, and a frosty, almost slushie-like texture. 

Both non-alcoholic, the two brightly-hued milks are somehow naturally colored, so we’re told, and made with fresh fruits that get turned into syrups to flavor and sweeten: passion fruit for the lightly herbaceous green milk, and dragon fruit for the more saccharine blue milk. They’re only available in the milk stand—located right next to the First Order’s ship—and run $7.99 a glass. If you’re looking for a very blue-milk spin on cookies and milk, you can find that over in Oga’s Cantina, but for the straightforward stuff, this stand is the only place on Batuu to sell it. 

Want to skip the line? You can preorder your milk via the Disneyland app, so you can get out from under the watchful eye of the First Order all the more quickly.

Photograph: Courtesy Disney Parks/Christian Thompson

Hunt for easter eggs

This is a themed land by fans, for fans. The creators of Galaxy’s Edge are some of the biggest Star Wars aficionados on the planet and include members of Lucasfilm’s own team. That means that you can expect a world within a world of hidden gems and nods to the franchise’s storied characters and mythos, all worth tracking down during your visit. Some of the most fun nods—both in and out—of the Star Wars universe can be found in Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities, which serves as both a merch shop and a museum; while there, don’t forget to look up and take a peek at the walls and the second-floor balcony. You’ll probably spot the enormous taxidermied wampa, but keep an eye out for other unexpected gems, such as the golden ark from Raiders of the Lost Ark. (And no, sadly, those aren’t for sale. Dok won’t even haggle over them.)

As you move through the park, look down, too: The creative team took rubbings from the feet of R2-D2 and used them to create tracks in the pathways, so you can follow along in the footsteps, er, treads, of some of your favorite droids and other creatures. 

Some of the hidden gems of Galaxy’s Edge are harder to discern. There’s plenty of signage around Black Spire, and to translate the aurebesh language, you’ll need to download the free Play Disney Parks app onto your phone. Use the translator function to unscramble signs and even what characters are speaking to each other, or use the scanning feature to find out what’s inside some of the crates stored around Batuu. Through the app, you can even tune in and eavesdrop on communications on both the Resistance and First Order sides—so you’ll always be in the know, and ready for battle.

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opens on Friday, May 31. Reservations are required until June 24.

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