Without a doubt the Walt Disney Company has brought balance to the force with their acquisition of the Star Wars franchise. Between new films being released, Star Wars themed days at sea on select Disney Cruises, and the highly anticipated Star Wars land being created in both Walt Disney World and Disneyland, I can’t think of a better time to be a Stat Wars fan.
Although Star Wars Land won’t be opening for quite some time, you can experience the Star Wars universe right now. During my recent venture to Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, I decided to take a closer look at all things Star Wars, which all reside in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Here are some of the top attractions and experiences to enjoy while visiting:
Star Tours – The Adventure Continues
Strap in and blast off to hyperspace on Star Tours – The Adventure Continues, a 3-D, motion-simulated space flight touring the planets and seeing the people made famous by the Star Wars franchise. Due to the attraction’s multiple storylines, riders can experience unique combinations almost every time. For example, during one ride you can experience the icy terrain of Hoth and the next you can immerse yourself in the bustling cosmopolitain city-planet of Coruscant? Although Star Tours is not a brand new attraction to the Walt Disney World Resort, this thrilling adventure now includes a brand new story taking place in Jakku, the desert planet made famous in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Star Tours is a fun, unique attraction that always leaves me with a smile on my face. It’s fun for all ages, however there guests must be 40in or taller to ride. Star Tours can also be experienced in Disneyland in Anaheim, California.
Star Wars Launch Bay
Movie props, video games and merchandise – oh my! The Launch Bay is the heart of immersing yourself in the Star Wars universe whether you decide to take a closer look at props from the Dark Side and the Light side, trade some “precious cargo” with a Jawa in a replica of the famous Cantina or try out the popular video game, Disney Infinity 3.0! Guests even have the opportunity to take home Star Wars merchandise including life size sculptures, prop replicas and even personalized phone cases. My personal favorite experience in the Launch Bay is the opportunity to meet some of the franchise’s stars: everyone’s favorite furry side kick, Chewbacca and the First Order’s own, Kylo Ren. As seen in my candid featured on the right with Kylo Ren, it’s a one of a kind encounter that really brings the films to life and for a fan, it’s a dream come true!
Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple
During certain times throughout the day, you have the chance to watch some “younglings” put their skills to the test against the Dark Side. Nostalgic, fun and at times even adorable, this show is very ent ertaining and offers guests the chance to see some of our favorites from the Dark Side including Darth Vader and the Seventh Sister Inquisitor. Sadly for us over the age of 12, we cannot participate in this exciting production, but if you have children (ages 4-12) who are strong with the force, this is perfect for them! In order for them to participate, make sure to register before the show as availability is limited and offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. Jedi Training is also featured at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California.
Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away
This brand-new live show brings iconic Star Wars scenes to life in only the way Disney can do it!
The show features brilliant film montages partnered with appearances by new and old fan favorites such as R2-D2, C3-PO, Bobba Fett, Darth Maul, Captain Phasma and even BB-8. It’s a great show that will have you reminiscing on some of your favorite moments from the films and gives you a chance to see characters who you cannot meet in the parks. The show is great for all ages and occurs various times throughout the day.
Symphony in the Sky Fireworks
Finish your day out at Disney’s Hollywood Studios with dazzling fireworks set to John Williams’ brilliant Star Wars score along with narration from some of our favorite Star Wars characters from both the Dark Side and the Light. I have been visiting the Walt Disney World Resort years and I have never witnessed such a spectacle as the Symphony in the Sky Fireworks. These are a DEFINITE must-see during your visit. The show will give any Star Wars fan goosebumps. If you want to enhance your viewing experience, you can reserve a spot for the Symphony in the Stars: A Galactic Spectacular Dessert Party, where you can watch the fireworks from a reserved viewing area while enjoying Star Wars themed desserts and drinks for a fixed price.
Which experience sounds the most exciting to you? Let us know in the comments below!