We’ll stop by Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios for a nighttime visit. I’ll interject the occasional daytime review of a handful of food and drink items as we arrive at a few destinations, in order to provide a little context about where we are and what we’re looking at. You can click any of the nighttime images for a larger version.
Galaxy’s Edge is split into three or four areas. As you head inside the Land through the main entrance on Grand Avenue, you’ll first walk through the Resistance Forest, which is where the Rise of the Resistance attraction will be located. Despite some “rumors” indicating that the ride is lagging behind schedule, everything I’ve heard from cast members on the ground indicates that we’ll be in business for the December 5th opening. Until then, the Resistance Forest is wide open and offers a couple of photo ops in front of Rebel aircraft. Fast forward about ten weeks and we’ll be looking at a lot more crowding for the Rise opening.
I’ve found that it’s easiest to get your bearings if you start your adventure on the left side of the Land by heading through The Market.
There’s an incredible amount of detail in here with a variety of shops and set pieces on both sides of the walkway. You’ll also find bathrooms just inside on the left.
As surprising as it might be, the first thing that you’ll see on your right isn’t trying to sell you anything at all. That may be unfortunate as I’ve always wanted to take home a “life size” wood-carved porg that I could dress up in little holiday outfits. Across from here, you can adopt a “Kowakian Monkey Lizard,” which functions similar to the banshees in Pandora, perching on your shoulder with a plastic remote to control a couple of movements. Said banshees are available for around $10 at the Disney Outlets and Cast Connection, so you may want to sleep on these for a little bit. Ten bucks is still too rich for my blood.
The various stores and stalls are all on the small side, but the fact that a lot of the merchandise can be seen without having to go through a door and enter a store makes browsing a lot easier than its sister land, Hogsmeade.
After hours, this is what you’ll see. Kat Saka’s Kettle is just about at the end of the row on the left, where you’ll be able to try the Outpost Popcorn Mix.
That grungy orange cylinder on the right is actually a fan.
Some landspeeder models, which may remind you of that Endor speeder bike roller coaster that we never got. Tron will have to do.
Galaxy’s Edge’s version of Ohana’s [sic] arrives at the end of the Marketplace in the form of Ronto Roasters. Ronto is, of course, the massive beast native to the planet Tatooine. That means Ronto is not the owner of the Roasters. It’s what’s getting roasted.
Instead, you’ll see a droid working the mechanical pit that’s illuminated in orange above an old pod racer engine that works as the grill.
The $13 “Ronto Wrap – Roasted Pork, Grilled Pork Sausage, Peppercorn Sauce, and Tangy Slaw wrapped in Pita Bread” is what’s served during the majority of the day. Through 10am, a breakfast Ronto Wrap is served as “Scrambled Eggs, Grilled Pork Sausage, Shredded Cheddar, and Peppercorn Sauce wrapped in Pita Bread” for $12.49.
The Pita bread is fresh and fluffy with a nice chew and does an admirable job of keeping all of the stuff in the wrap together. It’s not nearly as difficult or as messy as you might expect to eat it. The Grilled Pork Sausage is long and relatively thin, packed with pork and chorizo with a snappy casing. The flavor is mildly spicy with a little paprika and chili pepper. The sausage is wrapped up in a thin layer of Roasted Pork, which adds even more meatiness to the bite. I found the slaw to be incredibly tangy and almost overwhelmingly vinegary, though the cabbage and carrots did a nice job of adding some crunch to the bite. It’s a personal preference, but I ended up jettisoning about half of the slaw to the side, which made for a meatier flavor profile more to my liking.
When I got in the short line to order, the cast member mentioned that the Ronto Wrap was incredibly filling. As someone who typically eats at two different buffets for each meal, I found this somewhat unlikely. But it was actually very filling – there’s a lot of pork involved and that pita is serious, too. I was full for six-plus hours, which may help justify the $13 price. Our Ronto is not served with a side, so what you see is what you get. On the other hand, two Mickey Pretzels will set you back just as much money, and this is easily more food and way more protein. You might elect to share one to start – there are plenty of good snacks and treats in Galaxy’s Edge and one of these is probably going to put your hunger out of commission for a while.
Ronto Roasters offers three non-alcoholic beverages, here with the $5.49 “Sour Sarlacc – Minute Maid Limeade with Raspberry and Spicy Mango.” This was really sweet and overwhelmingly syrupy with a cloying mouthfeel that made it difficult to drink. While you might end up wanting a Ronto Wrap to yourself, it seems unlikely that anyone would want to put all of one of these back. Like almost all of the drinks in Galaxy’s Edge, it would be a lot better with two shots of vodka.
Back to the cover of darkness, Docking Bay 7 Food and Cargo is the Land’s principle quick service that I will review in full one of these days. The “Smoked Kaadu Ribs – Sticky Pork Ribs, Blueberry Corn Muffin, Cabbage Slaw” are my favorite, though the $17 price point is on the high side. At $19, the Pot Roast is even more expensive. That’s the same price as my beloved lunchtime Andouille-crusted Chicken Breast Sandwich at Hollywood Brown Derby. If I was spending all day at the Studios, as gruesome as that might sound, I’d probably elect to do the Brown Derby lunch to cool off and relax with great service and food. Dinner at Ronto Roasters or Docking Bay 7 would follow.
This photo was taken from right outside Docking Bay 7, looking down at the Millennium Falcon below. The attraction entrance is on the bottom left of the frame.
Perhaps arguably, I think Pandora – The World of Avatar looks better in (good) nighttime photos than it does “in real life.”
Galaxy’s Edge is the opposite.
No matter how good it looks in any of the pictures you might see (elsewhere).
It’s even more awe-inspiring in person.
If you’re interested in touring strategy, then you can see what it takes to rope drop Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run in this post. Doing so is actually even easier at the moment as more and more people are heading to Toy Story Land first thing instead. If you’d like to see what you can expect from rope dropping Slinky Dog Dash during the Extra Extra Magic Hours period, then you can pull up this post. My review and tips on riding Smugglers Run specifically can be found here.
If you’re looking out from the Smugglers Run entrance, the entrance to Oga’s Cantina is just ahead on the left.
Oga’s Cantina should be on most people’s to-do lists. Reservations are largely required, though walkups are typically available before 8am and after 8pm most days. You can pull up the online availability here.
The atmosphere is a lot of fun, and while the drinks are stupid expensive, the overall experience makes that $14 beer taste a little better.
During the day, you may see a short show featuring Kylo Ren, Stormtroopers, and First Order officers on the stage in front of this ship.
In the evening, it’s lit up blue with a First Order store off to its left.
When there isn’t a show going on, this is one of the less-congested areas to hang out for a bit.
Maybe shoot a vlog.
“The Milk Stand” is over here, almost directly across from Kylo’s ship.
Saying that reviews of the two Milks are “mixed” is probably being generous. At least on the joy that is Twitter, at least three-quarters of the people/bots seem to think that at least one of the flavors is undrinkable.
At the risk of losing what little credibility I have left, I actually liked the $8 Green Milk, which was a little fruity with a refreshing melon flavor. I was told by someone who would know that it was a lot less grassy than they remember Disneyland’s version. Neither of these are “milk” in the traditional sense – Rice Milk is the base with Sugar, Coconut Oil, and Maltodextrin as the other main ingredients. Knowing this, the drinks may be less palatable. Worse, even if you love the flavor, they’re still an incredible rip off just about any way you look at it. No one is more familiar than I am with the Disney upcharge; I’ve paid for and reviewed several thousand Epcot Festival items over the last ten years, but the price point here “feels” even more egregious. At eight dollars a pop, for maybe eight ounces, you’d have to think that Disney’s profit is about eight dollars each. But it is the cost of doing business and the cost of taking a picture of/with each. Perhaps Disney knows that after trying one, you’re not going to want to order a second anyway, so they might as well make them small and expensive. If the serving size was twice as big, I might actually return to order more of these in the future. But at a dollar an ounce, it’s going to be a no from me. On the plus side, both non-alcoholic versions qualify for a snack credit, making them good values on that front. You can also order them with a drop or two of alcohol for another $6.
But Disney definitely knows you want to try these and the contentious takeaways may only fuel that fire.
As you walk around Galaxy’s Edge, you’ll find a tremendous amount of detail in a number of nooks and crannies.
You could spend several hours roaming around and still miss the occasional window display or friendly (stationary) droid:
Galaxy’s Edge is a Land that you’ll want to experience both during the day and night. At the moment, you’ll find Extra Extra Magic Hours beginning at 6am every day through November 2nd. That means those who arrive in Galaxy’s Edge before the 7:15am sunrise will be able to enjoy the Land “at night” over the next six weeks or so. I’d still circle back after dark in the evening. You can typically hang out for about an hour after regular Park close as people finish up with Smugglers Run, Oga’s Cantina, etc. and head for the exit. Even Chewbacca is typically scheduled to come out and mingle with guests 30 minutes after the Park closes.
The website will continue to monitor the situation inside Galaxy’s Edge. At the moment, crowds remain low with Smugglers Run averaging a wait of less than an hour over the course of the day. The longest posted waits are found from 9am to 9:30am, which makes sense given the fact that the Park opens to all at 9am. Most of the day, you’ll see a 50- or 60-minute wait posted. At the very end of the night, you should wait about a half hour, making a late night visit one of your better options if you don’t want to arrive early. When I’m eligible for Extra Extra Magic Hours, I like to get in line at about 8:50am, when actual waits are typically around 20 minutes. You can see how visiting Sunset Boulevard from 7:30am to 8:30am goes with a stop at Smugglers Run after in this post.
Hopefully the next time we visit Hollywood Studios, we’ll be arriving in style via the Skyliner.