19 Feb Star Wars Destinations
Did you know that you can find planets like Hoth and Endor on Earth itself? Discover some locations where you can live out your Star Wars fantasies!
1. LARS HOMESTEAD – Chott El Djerid, Tunisia
The iconic exterior of Luke Skywalker’s home from Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, was filmed here.
About Chott El Jerid:
Chott El Jerid is a dry salt lake in south-west Tunisia.
The sets from the original movie—which had been taken down—were rebuilt in 2000 to the exact specifications with the original plans.
The man-made craters are still there. Lucasfilm and crew returned here to shoot the Tatooine sequences for Episoode II and Episode III. The site was renovated by fans between 2010 and 2012.
Where to stay: La Badira
Address: Route Touristique, Mrezga, Tunisia
Located 5 hours away facing the Mediterranean Sea is La Badira, a 5- star hotel and a member of the Leading Hotels of the World. La Badira is surrounded by beautiful blues — the greenish blue of the pool, the sapphire sky and the azure of the sea. The bright white columns reflected the shimmering water.
La Badira means “luminous as the full moon”. The hotel is brand new. There’s a choice of three types of rooms. Each of these Legend suites is designed after the style of a famous Hammamet visitor from the early 20th century. There are spas, pools, a jacuzzi available.
The breakfast is a buffet, with eggs made to order, and more pastries than you could ever hope to sample. There are three other restaurants, led by French chef Sébastien Bontour and executive chef Slim Bettaieb.
If you’d like to dine elsewhere, note that the hotel is a short drive or long walk outside of the town of Hammamet.
2. HOTH – Hardangerjøkulen, Norway
Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back used this spectacular glacier to portray the ice planet Hoth.
Hardangerjøkulen is the fourth biggest glacial body of continental Norway. The glacier consists of an ice dome and a dozen or so outlet glaciers, which are surprisingly stable despite the warming climate. Glacier hiking is a popular activity there.
Guide Recommendation: Finse 1222
Finse 1222 works with skilled glacier guides who have extensive experience in organizing treks in Glacier. Crampons, climbing harness and fuses are necessary when exploring Blåisen close up. The guide would ensure that you have the necessary equipment.
If you’re attending a glacier tour, you need to be in physical good condition. The tour lasts 6-7 hours and the glacier is about a 1.5 hour hike from Finse station.
Where to Stay: Finse 1222
Address: 5719 Finse, Norway
Finse 1222 is a century-old mountain hotel with an unique historical atmosphere. People choose Finse 1222 as a destination because they want to explore the beautiful nature, get a break from their busy daily-life or simply just to get to know Finses culture and history.
If you’re interested in skiing, ski-sailing, biking, hiking by foot or in the glacier Finse is the perfect destination for you. A lot of the guests come here because of their excellent three-course dinner.
Whatever your motivation is, Finse 1222 will never fail to give you the best experience.
3. ENDOR – Redwood National and State Parks, CA, USA
This place was used to portray the evergreen planet of Endor (home of the Ewoks).
Redwood National Park isn’t merely a great place to film short fuzzy creatures, incongruously building primitive traps; it also has a gorgeous scenic road winding its way through – The Redwood Highway RT-101. All along the highway are quaint hotels, motels, visitor centers and the hundreds-foot-high redwoods.
Here’s a place to fulfil a fantasy of yours since childhood to pretend to fight the Empire on the forest moon of Endor. May the Force be with you!
Where to Stay: Blue Lake Casino Hotel
Address: 777 Casino Way, Blue Lake, CA 95525, United States
A 30 minute drive from Redwood National Park brings you to Blue Lake Casino Hotel. Minutes from both the Pacific Ocean and rugged mountains, Blue Lake Casino & Hotel offers a boutique hotel experience at an affordable rate and the perfect base camp for exploring beautiful Humboldt County! You can enjoy great food (Alice’s Steak & Sushi), live entertainment, and a casino!
4. NABOO ROYAL PALACE – Royal Palace of Caserta in Caserta, Italy
Built in the beautiful style of the Baroque, this place served as the filming location for both Queen Amidala’s and Queen Camilla’s royal palace in Star Wars Episode I and II.
The Caserta Palace, is a palace in Caserta, a town situated north-east of Naples. Its Palazzo Reale is the largest royal palace in Italy, designed by Luigi Vanvitelli and built for the Bourbon King Charles III in the 1750s. It boasts over a thousand rooms and the surrounding park is full of fountains and statuary. There is also an English Garden.
The interior was used in filming the scenes in the Theed Royal Palace for the Star Wars films.
Where to Stay: Hotel Plana
Address: Via Domenico Mondo, 69, 81100 Caserta CE, Italy
Hotel Plana is a comfortable way to see the city of Naples and that of Caserta. Just 2.4km from the Royal Palace, the hotel is easily accessible by car, given the proximity to two highways, or train, located less than a kilometer. Hotel Plana is the right choice for those who wish to have a pleasant stay and to enjoy the beautiful architecture, such as the medieval village of Casertavecchia and the viewpoint of San Leucio or shop in Campania and in the Outlet Shopping Center “The Palace.”
A recently renovated and painstaking work of interior design have brought to light a young, refined hotel. An ideal retreat for all those who love the sober and elegant spaces, Plana offers an intimate and discreet service to spend in harmony and privacy of genuine pleasure.
5. Mountains of Alderaan – Grindelwald, Switzerland
Footage of the mountain scenery was composited into the backdrop of the planet Alderaan, home-world of Princess Leia, in Episode III.
Aside from seeing it blown to smithereens in Episode IV, the planet only received a small bit of screen time in Episode III. But the mountainous backdrop during Episode III was memorable as its better known as the Swiss village of Grindelwald.
Apart from a stunning view, Grindelwald is a wintry paradise for outdoor adventurers, featuring great skiing, tobogganing and hiking.
Where to Stay: Belvedere Swiss Quality Hotel
Address: Dorfstrasse 53 | 3818 Grindelwald, Grindelwald 3818, Switzerland
One of the leading Swiss first class hotels, the Hotel Belvedere Grindelwald has a wonderful view, is highly recommended by famous travel guides, and is a member of the French Gourmet Association “Chaine des Rôtisseurs”.
In a sunny location, the hotel has sensational views of the famous Eiger and neighbouring mountains. The family owned and run Belvedere has received the highest quality award, the Q2 presented by the Swiss Hotel Association. With generously sized rooms and excellent cuisine, the hotel also has a spa area with a swimming pool (30°C), Jacuzzi, Finnish and bio sauna, steam bath, outdoor salt water Jacuzzi and massages.
Other Star Wars themed Places:
Cantina Bar, Manchester
Named the Cantina bar, the space will serve blue “bantha milk” cocktails, which Luke Skywalker first drinks in Star Wars Episode IV.
In the film’s blue milk could be found on most planets across the galaxy and was known for being rich, refreshing and sweet. The Cantina cocktail is made with Irish Meadow Country Cream, Red Square Vodka and a dash of blue food colouring.
Other cocktails on pour will be Wookie Juice, featuring Red Square Sloe Vodka, lemon juice and sugar syrup; a Princess Punch made with vodka, elderflower cordial, lemon juice and soda; and Jam Jar Binks, which blends Red Square Toffee Vodka with apple schnapps and lemon juice.
The bar features an Ewok village, Yoda’s Dagobah swamp and Jabba The Hutt’s palace complete with an eight-foot model of the slug-like creature.
Address: P.O. Box 2898, Petaluma, CA 94953, United States
Cost: $100 for the Apprentice Membership to the museum that includes one tour.
Steve Sansweet is the world’s most avid collector of Star Wars memorabilia. And then one day he had the bright idea to create a museum to display all of it.
Steve created Rancho Obi-Wan, a 9,000 square foot museum that has the largest privately owned Star Wars collection ever on display. He founded Rancho Obi-Wan, Inc. in October of 2011 as a California nonprofit public benefit corporation to manage the collection.
The greatest part of this experience would be that your tour is led by the owner himself, Mr. Steve Sansweet. The tours are generally two to three hours and you can ask Steve as many questions as you would like. You’ll even have the chance to play in the Star Wars arcade where can test your pinball skills. Make sure you check their calendar for availability as Steve only does tours on Mondays, Fridays, and Saturdays.