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This post contains pictures and details about Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge in Disneyland. Stop reading now to avoid spoilers! Here is a picture of the newly restored Sleeping Beauty Castle to keep you from seeing the Star Wars stuff. Turn back now!
Now that the spoiler alert is out of the way, we can proceed. And, I must say, we can enjoy this pre-park opening picture of the castle. But more on that later.
First, I’ll tell you the story about how three people in Missouri, who had no intention of being part of the new land madness, fell into the perfect opportunity to visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at about half of the land’s capacity the first week of June.
A long time ago…
Our story really begins in January as my husband and I worked on the set for my high school’s production of Beauty and the Beast. We had just been to Walt Disney World the previous June, and we generally have found ourselves in an every other year pattern so we can find time for other destinations. Then, I started throwing around the idea that we may want to go to Walt Disney World for the 50th-anniversary stuff in 2021. That would throw off the pattern.
But what about Disneyland? Kristin and I had never been to California, and Jeff hadn’t been since he was a child. We could see LA and San Diego, too. And hey, what if we flew instead of taking our yearly road trip? So while Jeff sawed some plywood, I booked us three seats on Southwest for May 29th.
Changes to the Plan
At some point in the spring, I read that Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge was opening around the time of our trip. Oh no! We purposely booked in the early summer thinking we would avoid the crowds for that. In fact, that same strategy had worked for us to avoid Toy Story Land in Disney Studios the year before. The plane tickets were already booked, so we decided we’d give it our best go.
Then the word came out about the reservation period from May 31- June 23. I wondered if I could get a reservation. Since we were already going, I thought I may as well try. I logged in as soon as I could on that fateful reservation day, and I had my pick of the four days we planned to do Disney. We ended up choosing our last day, and we figured the first reservation slot of the day would be the least crowded.
So, as you can see, we really didn’t plan on this amazing experience initially, but everything worked out well. I don’t think it could have gone any better for my family. Add the lower crowds to the parks in general as a side effect of Star Wars opening, and the unseasonably cool temperatures in Anaheim, and it was wonderful!
Now, I know not everyone will have the benefit of visiting during the reservation period, but I hope our experiences can help you plan when things do get busier, and probably for years. We joke that we may never see Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. But remember, knowledge is power. I hope this helps.
Our First Disneyland Day
On our first Disneyland day, we happened to have a Magic Morning reservation to get into the park an hour early. While we waited at the turnstile for our turn to enter, we watched the Star Wars people enter. We arrived at 6:15 am to try to be towards the front of the crowd, and the Star Wars people were already going in. We learned we should arrive early for our 8:00 am reservation.
During our Magic Morning, the Star Wars guests lined up at Rose Red Tavern to enter the land. As we hopped from ride to ride, we could see the benefit of getting there early to be at the front of that group. Lesson learned.
Arriving Before the Park Opens
Our day was not a Magic Morning day. We arrived at the turnstile at about 6:15 am. Several cast members are along the route to guide your way through a near-empty park. I would suggest getting there early after the reservation period ends to be as close to the front of the crowd as possible. Who knows when that will be? I’m sure Disney will announce when the line will be allowed to begin.
We did get to see an empty Main Street. It wasn’t too busy during Magic Morning, but this is even more empty.
Check this one out.
We were led to Launch Bay to get our wristbands, and then we were led to Tomorrowland near the Matterhorn to wait to be led to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, also known as the planet Batuu. There was counter service breakfast available.
Entering Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge
We waited for about 45 minutes, and then the cast members led us to the opening of the land. At 8:00 am, there was a countdown, and we were off. They did need to scan our wristbands once more, so that can slow you up a little. Just be aware if you’re going in during the reservation period. Here is the Facebook Live video I took of the countdown.
I know it looks crowded and chaotic in the video, and it was at first, but after a few minutes, people spread out to do their things. One of our priorities was getting into Oga’s Cantina. I’d been reading, and I knew to get in, one of us needed to get in line to make a reservation. Currently, the line forms to the right and there is a flag person to help you find the way. When you get to the end of the line, there are several cast members who are available to take guests names and phone numbers for a text to return. Here is another Facebook Live video I did while I waited in line. I got in line, and Jeff and Kristin explored a little.
Here’s some more video of the area via Facebook Live video.
Soon I was signed up, and I had a text that said our return time was in 30 minutes. Wonderful!
It’s hard not to just stand around and gawk at everything.
Of course, the Stormtroopers are there!
Riding Millinieum Falcon: Smuggler’s Run
Another priority, of course, was riding the only ride open at this time–Millinieum Falcon: Smuggler’s Run. We looked up at the wait time at the ride, and it said “15 minutes.” We should have enough time to ride and then get to the cantina.
The queue for this ride is amazing, as if there’d be any doubt. So many details.
The line wraps around, up and down, for a while.
You can see the Millennium Falcon out of some windows. Big Thunder Mountain is in the distance.
Soon, a few people at a time are let inside this show room where the mission is explained.
Your party receives a boarding pass, and then you go to a holding room with a few other parties. Our group of three was lucky enough to be a crew by ourselves! Also, about this time, our Oga’s text came. It said we had 15 minutes to report. I tried to not be a little anxious about that and enjoy the experience.
You can walk freely around the holding room and pose for a picture at the chess table until your boarding pass is called. It didn’t take long!
Since our crew was a party of three, they said we could sit anywhere in the room. Jeff wanted to pilot, and Kristin didn’t care as long as I sat next to her. So we became gunners. Our flight was pretty doomed with one pilot and two gunners without the best aim, but it was fun. The intensity is similar to Star Tours.
We somehow made it, and the ride revealed to us that we shot with 34% accuracy. We probably won’t be recruited for the Resistance anytime soon.
Having Drinks in Oga’s Cantina
After we rode Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s run, we knew we needed to make our way back to Oga’s Cantina. We waited in another line, and they told us we would be standing at an available space at the bar. Another party near us asked for a booth, and the cast member said it would be another 20 minutes. That’s not a bad wait, but we just took the standing area. We found a place to stand near a standing table, and checked out the menu.
Here is the back.
It’s worth noting that there were larger menus around, too. We decided to share two drinks since they are a little pricey. The atmosphere is pretty fun while you wait. The droid DJ-R3X keeps the music going. We heard the Star Wars Cantina Band music play once, and the crowd went wild! Here is another Facebook Live video of the cantina.
The details inside are amazing! You may think you should skip this because of the line, but I’d reconsider if possible. If you want to build the Lightsaber at Savi’s, then Oga’s Cantina will be difficult to get in. You do want to make that reservation as soon as you arrive because during the reservation period, they’re cutting off the line. Who knows what will happen after June 23.
Soon our drinks arrived, both of them non-alcoholic, but you can get alcoholic drinks in the cantina. Since we wanted to try blue milk while we were there, and blue milk was on the menu, we thought we’d kill two birds with one stone and give it a shot. In Oga’s, the drink is called a Blue Bantha. Here it comes with a yummy cookie on top that had pecans on it. I think.
The drink was pretty good, and my picky family gave me the cookie.
The other drink was…interesting. From what I remember, it’s called a Carbon Freeze. It’s served with dry ice, so it arrives “smoking.”
The fizz makes the “berries” move all over the place. The drink was pretty good and definitely fun!
After we finished the liquid, we were left with these balls in the drink.
We tried them, and they’re kind of like candy grapes. They have a liquid filling. Jeff was impressed with these coasters, so we took a couple home.
Exploring Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge
We didn’t stay in Oga’s Cantina too long. Other people wanted to experience it, and it wasn’t like we were sitting at a table. Plus, we had more Batuu to explore!
We headed off to the marketplace.
The marketplace area is a great place to shop for your Star Wars gear. First up, Kristin had been wanting a porg, so we went to the creature stall first. The porg is kind of like a puppet that allows you to manipulate the wings and its sounds.
To add to our collection of Star Wars popcorn buckets, Jeff thought we needed this mouse droid. It’s filled with colorful “space popcorn,” but it tastes like kettle corn. I thought we needed the Star Wars Coke bottle shaped as a thermal detonator. Here’s all of our loot, including the porg in its creature box, or as Kristin calls it–the cage.
You can shop for various items at many of the stalls in the marketplace.
Maybe you need a new robe?
Since we already had blue milk, we didn’t go to the milk stand. If you can’t get into Oga’s, you can try it here.
Building a custom lightsaber at Savi’s workshop gets the most attention at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, but you can also shop for legacy lightsabers at the Den of Antiquities. You should certainly poke around here.Also, don’t forget to check out the Droid Depot, even if you aren’t building a droid. You can enter from the opposite side of the shop away from those in line to just observe the goings-on.
Here is a short video of Droid Depot.
Characters in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge
Since Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge immerses you in a story; the characters interact in character instead of posing for pictures. Even the cast members who aren’t necessarily a specific character will interact with you as if you’re really in Batuu. When I asked where the restroom was, the cast member pointed me in the direction of the “refresher.” One sweeper worried about me detonating my Coke bottle. Ha!
Stormtroopers engaged with guests constantly.
We also caught a glimpse of Rey far away from the First Order section towards the forest area.
We didn’t see Chewbacca on this day, but we’ve met him before.
The End of Our Story
Towards the end of the third hour of our reservation time, we took inventory of what we still wanted to do. We weren’t starving, so we didn’t feel the need to eat lunch in the land, although Ronto Roasters has some fun theming.
We took in a few more of the details before the next reservation group would overlap ours.
The little touches everywhere truly are amazing.
We finally made our way past the forest towards Frontierland; the next reservation group entered soon after. Along the way, we saw the queue for the yet unopened ride, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance.
We also passed some space ships, including this Jedi Starfighter.
Soon we were walking out the exit past the Brown Bear Restaurant. I’m still amazed that we were lucky to have this experience. Jeff says it was a childhood dream come true, and I think a lot of people in our generation can say that. Even Kristin had fun, though her Star Wars knowledge is limited and more focused on the newer movies. If you have a chance to go during the reservation period, definitely do it! I’d even go after the reservation period; we were prepared for huge crowds before the reservation system was announced. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland is something you should experience!
Click here to read about our experience at the Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular Dessert Pary at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World!