The LAist Guide To Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge At Disneyland

There's a new Star Wars land that we've all been impatiently drooling over basically as long as we can remember. It finally opens to the public Friday — we visited Thursday in person. Find out more about the in-person experience in our thread, with photos, surprises, and more of what we thought:

Disney is trumpeting Galaxy's Edge as the most technologically advanced land expansion the company has ever had in one of its parks. Upon entering, you'll be transported to Black Spire Outpost on Batuu, on the galaxy's Outer Rim — thus, Galaxy's Edge. And you'll have some brand new John Williams music to accompany you on the journey, playing throughout the land.

Here's everything we know about it so far:

MILLENNIUM FALCON: SMUGGLERS RUN

Finally, our chance to be Han Solo (or maybe you're more the Chewie type?). According to the ride's storyline, Chewbacca brought the ship to Black Spire Outpost for repairs following the events of The Last Jedi. He loans the Falcon to a smuggler in return for replacement parts.

The ride ties in with the Star Wars animated shows The Clone Wars and Rebels, with the smuggler in question being space pirate Hondo Ohnaka. You get to join a flight crew to make some runs for his "legitimate" operation, as long as you don't ask too many questions about the cargo and how Hondo got it.

Meet the formerly animated pirate Hondo Ohnaka. (Richard Harbaugh/Disney Parks)

You'll step aboard this bucket of bolts, checking out the ship's main hold and lounge — you can even take a seat at the iconic Dejarik holochess table. When you enter the cockpit, you get to punch it and make the jump to lightspeed, while being guided by Hondo and Chewie.

You're divided into groups of six and assigned to one of three different roles (which is one way to hook you into making multiple visits). Pilots will steer the ship, gunners will keep everyone safe, and flight engineers help repair any damage and manage some "special modifications" you'll have the chance to discover — like a harpoon.

In the main hold of the Millennium Falcon. (Richard Harbaugh/Disney Parks)

Hondo will grade you when you're done — if you're hanging your head in shame thanks to the ship sustaining significant damage, the halls will show that damage as you leave the attraction.

You can use the "Play Disney Parks" app (more on that below) to take on a job for Hondo while waiting in line, getting you all prepped for the main event. Since they expect long lines for this attraction, they're doing everything they can to make the wait a pleasant one, including having snacks available to purchase, cast members interacting with you, and a process for you to go use the restroom as needed without relying on those around you to hold your spot (Disneyland can be cutthroat).

Disney promises that the details of the Millennium Falcon are accurate, down to specific hoses, pipes, switches, and stickers on the ship's hull. Imagineers visited Pinewood Studios in the U.K., along with studying archival photos, to get it just right.

STAR WARS: RISE OF THE RESISTANCE

This attraction is, sadly, not open yet. It's set to open by the end of the year, and sounds incredible. It puts you right in the middle of a battle between the First Order and the Resistance, and you even get to face off against Kylo Ren. You'll board a transport shuttle and even take a walk through a Star Destroyer.

According to Disney, they're opening the land in phases due to the immense demand, making what's ready available to the public sooner. So be patient, young padawan — and mark your calendar for the end of the year.

THERE'S A SPACE APP FOR THAT

Get ready to hack faster than a '90s computer movie. (Richard Harbaugh/Disney Parks)

The Play Disney Parks app is a central part of the experience. You can help a smuggler, join the Resistance, or become part of the First Order as you use the app to interact with your environment.

The app offers special experiences all throughout Disneyland, but it's even more special in Galaxy's Edge. It turns your phone into a Star Wars Datapad, with four core functions:

  • Hack: This lets you interact with local tech like droids, door panels, and other parts of your environment.
  • Scan: This lets you peek inside cargo crates and other containers, along with collecting virtual items.
  • Translate: Turn Galactic Basic language (aka Aurebesh) into English, along with translating other Star Wars languages.
  • Tune: You'll be able to tap into signals from satellite dishes and antenna arrays, letting you listen in on different characters' conversations.

There's a multiplayer game called Outpost Control that you can join at various times throughout the day, where you'll choose whether to support the Resistance or the First Order. The First Order team will be trying to install surveillance devices in door panels to spy on the Resistance, while the Resistance seeks their removal. The game ends when one of the sides hacks a majority of the available panels.

You'll earn galactic credits for tasks you accomplish around Galaxy's Edge. They also note that there may be some real-life physical effects that you can prompt using the app.

MAKE FRIENDS WITH REY OR KYLO REN

*randomly lightsabers a wall* (Richard Harbaugh/Disney Parks)

Characters representing both sides of the galactic conflict will be in abundance. Here's where you can find some of the most popular ones:

  • Rey may hang out near the ancient ruins outside Black Spire Outpost, recruiting both visitors and the Batuu locals to join the Resistance.
  • Supreme Leader Kylo Ren appears at First Order Docking Bay 9 several times a day, accompanied by Stormtroopers as he marches through Black Spire Outpost seeking out Resistance members.
  • Chewbacca will be found in either Black Spire Outpost or outside the Resistance encampment in the Batuu ruins, rounding up recruits.
  • Vi Moradi, a Resistance spy, may be found in Black Spire Outpost. She'll pass along spy tricks and let you know that the Resistance is gaining strength.
  • First Order Stormtroopers patrol Black Spire Outpost — and might yell orders at you, or start questioning you about the Resistance. Don't worry, we'll try not to judge you too harshly when you cave and tell them everything.
  • Batuu citizens, aka Disney cast members, are also part of the experience. Disney's actually letting them develop their own identities and personas, and they'll be ready to interact with you as you visit Galaxy's Edge. The cast members were able to help choose their own costume pieces, creating unique characters to give that extra level of reality to your visit to the edges of known space.
Disney cast members create their own characters. (Courtesy Disney)

EAT AND DRINK LIKE A CANTINA REGULAR

The Scum & Villainy Cantina popped up a few years back in Hollywood and offered us all that sweet dream — the chance to drink "Blue Milk." But that was an unofficial recipe. Now's your chance to find out what official Disney Blue Milk tastes like, along with Green Milk and more.

You'll walk through a marketplace area and get to taste a sort of space popcorn from Kat Saka's Kettle, combining sweet, savory, and spicy flavors. You'll get to visit Oga's Cantina, Docking Bay 7 Food and Cargo, Ronto Roasters, and the Milk Stand. The food was designed to give a "farm to table" feel fitting the remote location of Batuu.

Pro tip: You can skip lines by using mobile ordering in the Disneyland app for Ronto Roasters, the Milk Stand, and Docking Bay 7.

Grab a space drink, which probably tastes mysteriously like an Earth drink. (Richard Harbaugh/Disney Parks)

Visiting that cantina, you'll get to enjoy a real lived-in experience with blaster-bolt scorch marks on the walls. There's even a robot DJ, a job taken up by R-3X, the former droid pilot from the OG Star Tours. You'll also be listening to original cantina songs created by composers and songwriters from around the world. Drinks on hand include the spicy Bloody Rancor, the foamy Fuzzy Tauntaun, and the fruity Carbon Freeze. (Too soon, man.)

Docking Bay 7 Food and Cargo is a multi-purpose transport shuttle, offering you the Star Wars equivalent of a food truck. It features Tuggs' Grub, a traveling diner inspired by meals prepared for Star Wars character Maz Kanata. You can pick up Kaadu ribs, Fried Endorian Tip-yip, and Batuu-bon dessert.

Docking Bay 7 Food and Cargo at Galaxy's Edge. (Joshua Sudock/Joshua Sudock/Disney Parks)

The Ronto Roasters features a pod racing engine-powered barbecue pit, letting you pick up food like Ronto Wraps — which we hear is very similar to roasted pork and grilled sausage. Smelter droid 8D-J8 is on duty turning meat spits. Featured non-alcoholic drinks include the Sour Sarlacc and the Tatooine Sunset, aka a space version of gourmet flavored iced tea and lemonade.

At the Milk Stand, you can pick up the aforementioned Blue Milk and Green Milk. Blue Milk is that real old school Star Wars drink — it first popped up at a Skywalker family dinner in A New Hope. Green Milk memorably made an appearance with Luke suckling from the tete of an alien cow on Ahch-To. We know they're frozen, and we're hoping they're delicious.

GET THAT MERCH

Grab the coolest looking parts from conveyor belts at Droid Depot. (Joshua Sudock/Disney Parks)

In the market for an astromech droid? A fine looking R2 unit? You can do that at the Droid Depot, choosing pieces from a conveyor built to build either an R- or BB- series droid. You'll be able to customize them with different parts and colors, including personality-affiliation chips. You'll bring them to life in an activation station, and they even interact with parts of the land as you travel around (using that ancient Force technology known as "Bluetooth"). They come with remote controls, but you aren't allowed to use them with the remote control while in the park.

If you're not in a creative mood, you can also get a pre-built droid, as well as droid-themed toys and clothing. The DJ R-3X action figure even works as both a remote-control droid and a Bluetooth speaker. The experience was inspired by Anakin tinkering with C-3PO in The Phantom Menace.

Careful not to lightsaber each other. (Joshua Sudock/Disney Parks)

Savi's Workshop offers the chance to create your own handbuilt lightsaber. You've been able to do this over by Star Tours for a while now, but they're kicking it up a notch — get mystical and feel the Force. The Gatherers will usher you into a covert workshop, guiding you as you create your own unique lightsabers and power them up with kyber crystals.

There are four themes you can choose for your lightsaber:

  • Peace and Justice: Built from fallen Jedi temple scraps and crashed starships, these Republic-era lightsabers give you that old school Star Wars vibe.
  • Power and Control: These are dark side weapons, built from remnants of the Sith home world and abandoned temples.
  • Elemental Nature: Go natural with Force components like Brylark trees, Cartusion whale bones, and Rancor teeth.
  • Protection and Defense: The designs and inscriptions go back to the ancient origins of the Force.

All in all, there are 120,000 different lightsaber combinations, and 280,000 potential droid combinations.

Both this and the Droid Depot experiences are subject to availability, and Disney notes that reservations may be required.

Dok-Ondar's Den of Antiquities. (Christian Thompson/Disney Parks)

Dok-Ondar's Den of Antiquities features a selection of rare, mysterious items from different eras of the Star Wars saga. Go pick up holocrons, Jedi and Sith artifacts, replicas of classic lightsabers, and more.

You can even get Princess Leia's A New Hope necklace, re-created from the original mold. You'll also find Dok-Ondar himself at his desk, checking inventory and yelling orders at his assistants.

The Galaxy's Edge marketplace. (Richard Harbaugh/Disney Parks)

Other shops include the Creature Stall, Black Spire Outfitters, the Toydarian Toymaker (aka the flying species from The Phantom Menace), and the Jewels of Bith. The Creature Stall will let you pick up creatures like a Kowakian Monkey-Lizard, a Loth-Cat, and even an oh-so-adorable Porg.

There are even shops themed to your allegiances — shop at the makeshift Resistance Supply shop in their hidden command post, or pick something up from First Order Cargo — you'll be able to spot it when you see the First Order TIE echelon ship. The Resistance Supply shop even lets you get a soldier's ration kit based off Luke's from the Empire Strikes Back — they asked Mark Hamill what he remembered from the original kit, using those recollections to help create the item.

EASTER EGGS

An X-Wing at Galaxy's Edge. (Richard Harbaugh/Disney Parks)

Galaxy's Edge is set during the current Star Wars trilogy, but features nods to the rich history of the saga.

  • The land was designed to create sightlines reminiscent of the films — you start with views of wide vistas, then narrow in as you go inside, like a camera zooming in.
  • You'll see a classic creature, the dianoga from the Death Star trash compactor, in a tank above a Black Spire Outpost drinking fountain.
  • The smelter droid turning meat in the Ronto Roasters is similar to a droid from Jabba the Hutt's palace in Return of the Jedi.
  • A mural on a Dok-Ondar's Den of Antiquities wall represents the battle between the light and dark sides. The original bas-relief version of the image was seen in Chancellor Palpatine's office in Revenge of the Sith.
  • Black Spire Outpost is named after a tree trunk in the center of the village, darker than the other tall petrified trunks around the area.
  • Imagineers took rubbings from R2-D2's feet, using them to create a trolley that they rolled through the land before the concrete dried — creating droid tracks that you may see under your feet.
  • You may have caught them laying the seeds for Black Spire Outpost and Dok-Ondar, with both being referenced in Solo: A Star Wars Story.
  • Characters from the Timothy Zahn novel Thrawn: Alliances can be found in Oga's Cantina.
  • Imagineers used pre-1980 materials wherever possible to create the look and feel of the early Star Wars films.
  • The marketplace was inspired by real-life open-air markets in Morocco and Turkey — Imagineers traveled there to experience those themselves.
  • Ships on display include an A-Wing, an X-Wing, landspeeders, and more.

HOW TO GO SEE IT

THIS hunk of junk? (Richard Harbaugh/Disney Parks)

You need reservations to get into Galaxy's Edge — but only through June 23. Then things will be just as lawless as the Outer Rim Territories (though still limited by capacity).

However, they note that they'll be using a virtual queue system to visit the new land as needed. It'll be in a special section of the Disneyland app, Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge — Status and Access. You'll be able to request to join a boarding group to visit Galaxy's Edge once you enter the park, then get a push notification when it's your turn to enter. You can also find places to line up for a boarding group in various locations inside Disneyland if you aren't using the app. Even if you sign up for the virtual queue, there are no guarantees you'll actually get in.

General reservations for this early period are sold out, but you can still get one by booking a stay at a Disney hotel. Our pro tip: wait until Galaxy's Edge opens at Disney World at the end of August, so that more space tourists will be able to visit there instead of here.

A reminder: Disney doesn't allow anyone 14 and up to wear costumes at Disneyland, though they do allow what's known as "Disney bounding" — dressing in outfits inspired by your favorite characters.

There, we hope that helps whet your appetite and make your decision on whether to visit Galaxy's Edge — and whether you want to brave the crowds in the area's early days, or wait until things calm down.