Are you a giant Star Wars fan?!?! Yeah, me neither. But I am married to one, and I find Ewoks adorable, so I figured Star Wars deserved a blog. Truth be told, I had never seen a Star Wars movie, except for the one where Anakin gets chopped into bits in the pit of lava, and becomes Darth Vader (which messed up my childhood, btw), until this fall. The Force Awakens was looming, David was counting down the days, and in preparation, he made me watch every Star Wars movie before the midnight showing he took me to. To get me onboard with watching all of these movies (there are SO MANY MOVIES), he made sure my wine glass was always full, and I had Christmas cookies to always eat. I have to admit – I didn’t hate them. Did I think Luke and Leia had some creepy chemistry – for sure. But the movies weren’t bad. I LOVED The Force Awakens, and seeing as though I’m not a ride or die OG Star Wars fan, I thought it was better than all the original movies. (Please don’t throw things at me!). Today, we’re talking about all the things you can find in the Disney Parks right now that are Star Wars related, until the opening of Star Wars Land, hopefully in the not-so-distant future.
1. Star Wars Launch Bay, Hollywood Studios
The Star Wars Launch Bay is the go-to area for Star Wars in the parks. It’s set up so that you can go through the Launch Bay in a specific order, but you can bypass any part if you prefer. The first thing you encounter is a 10-minute film that celebrates the legacy that is Star Wars.
The exit for the film spits you out into an area with props and models from the film (including a pod-racer and a speeder bike that they used in the movies)! This was probably our favorite part of the Launch Bay, so take your time through this part if you nerd out on Star Wars as much as David does.
Next, you’ll enter the character meet and greet area, where you’ll find Kylo Ren and Chewbacca. Spoiler Alert: Kylo Ren is not Winnie the Pooh! A meet and greet with Kylo Ren is pretty creepy and intimidating (I mean, the kid killed his dad). You don’t get the same warm fuzzies that you would with Chewbacca, but it’s cool to see another type of meet and greet.
On your way out, there’s a gaming area that’s pretty cool, where you can play Disney Infinity. Honestly, I’ve never played the game and don’t have young kids, so we just walked through.
Last but not least, in classic Disney fashion, you end up in a gift shop! It’s the same gift shop that had all the Disney art after the Animation Studio (which we shed a tear for when it closed, RIP). They have some pretty cool Star Wars stuff here that you can’t get anywhere else in the parks, so make sure to take a look around on your way out.
2. Star Tours – The Adventures Continue, Hollywood Studios
Star Tours is the main Star Wars attraction, and the only Star Wars ride at the parks (until the new Star Wars Land opens!!!). The queue for this line might be my favorite part of the ride, because it really feels like you’re at a space station on Endor. If this is any indication of what Star Wars Land will be, it’s gonna be amazing. When you enter the ride, you sit in rows in front of a screen (it’s supposed to be some kind of shuttle). Then C3PO comes on the screen to guide you through the ride. And just when you’re about to leave THERE’S A SPY ON BOARD, so you have to escape Darth Vader, all while speeding through different worlds in 3D. The best part about this attraction is that it’s different every time, and there are a total of 54 different ride combinations. So chances are, you’ll never see the same thing twice! However, I can’t seem to ride it more than one time before I feel motion sick with the combination of the 3D glasses and the motion of the ride. But it’s definitely worth a FastPass (if you can’t get any for Toy Story Midway Mania, that is…)
3. Tatooine Traders, Hollywood Studios
After Star Tours, you end up in a pretty large gift shop that makes you feel like you’re on Tatooine. This one is pretty standard, but there is a place where you can build your own lightsaber!
4. Jedi Training – Trial at the Temple, Hollywood Studios
This is a great option for your youngsters, who get to become jedis and train with a jedi master. Then they get to battle villains (including Darth Vader). Definitely check it out if you have little ones who dream of wielding a lightsaber, but make sure to check your times guide and register for a show!
5. Star Wars, A Galaxy Far, Far Away, Hollywood Studios
This is a brand new stage show at Hollywood Studios, that recreates scenes from the movies and just brings up all kinds of nostalgia. Make sure to check the times so that you don’t miss it!
5. Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular, Hollywood Studios
This is the current nighttime show at Hollywood Studios and give you ALL THE FEELS by showing you classic montages from all the Star Wars movies, projected on the Chinese Theater and surrounding buildings. If this wasn’t enough to induce your emotions, they have fireworks and fire and lasers and all the awesome stuff that Disney does best going off at the same time. If you’re a Star Wars fan, make sure that you don’t miss this one on your trip. It truly is a Spectacular! (Spoiler alert – David liked it a lot more than Laura did. Laura gave it a 6.5 out of 10)
Hollywood Studios has plenty of things to get your Star Wars fix right now, while we wait for the completion of Star Wars Land (and hold candlelight vigils this winter over the loss of the Osborne Lights, and the closing of the Streets of America).