Come For The Scum, Stay For The Villainy: The ‘Star Wars’ Travel Guide To Tatooine

In anticipation of the release of The Force Awakens on Dec. 18, Uproxx will be taking a weekly look at some of the real-world destinations that inspired the classic films, as well as sharing tips on how to create a Star Wars travel adventure of your own.

This week, The Star Wars Travel Guide heads to the galaxy’s favorite hive of scum and villainy: Tatooine.  

Tatooine: Home To Bantha Milk & Worm Monsters!

Besides the lava planet where a mid-emo, pre-robot Anakin did his best impression of a melted candle in Revenge of the Sith, there is no worse place in the Star Wars universe than Tatooine. Here’s a quick recap of the awfulness:

Endless expanses of sand? Check.

Enormous goddamn worm monsters in said sand? Check.

Cities full of criminals, vaguely Dixieland space jazz, and not so vaguely ethnic stereotypes? Check.

Blue milk? You better goddamn believe they have some blue milk.

But as much as Tatooine sucks in the movies, the real-life destinations that inspired this planet are beautiful, interesting and best of all, not quite so far, far away.

The City of Mos Eisley

This city is like the worst parts of Baghdad and the worst parts of Coachella wrapped in one tight, dusty bundle. But while visiting actual Mos Eisley would be a bummer (because of the murder, and the murder, and the scrotum chinned townies hassling Luke Skywalker), the Qasar Al Sarab Desert Resort in the United Arab Emirates will give you similar architecture and beautiful desert vistas as the space port without a single laser-gun fight [Uproxx legal team does not endorse this statement].

The Qasar Al Sarab also offers (and this is what it’s actually called) a “Precious Ruby Gemstone Facial by Shiffa” in the hotel spa. Not that there’s anything particularly Star Wars-y about a “Precious Ruby Gemstone Facial” — it just sounds like a delightful way to spend the afternoon.

If you’d like your Tatooine experience to be a slightly more authentic (i.e. with fewer precious-stone-based spa treatments), then why not visit some locations where Star Wars was actually filmed?

Uncle Owen’s Moisture Farm

The filming location for Luke’s childhood home has been converted into a hotel/Star Wars museum. Unlike the movies, this hotel is not a working moisture farm (because even in a universe with space bears, a moisture farm seems silly) and the TripAdvisor reviews range from “a once in a lifetime experience” to “smells like putrid chicken.” Still, this hotel gives you the unique dual experience of staying in an actual Star Wars filming location that’s also a traditional Berber cave dwelling.