20 Star Wars locations you can visit in real life

7 of 21

Whippendell Woods,  UK

“Where did it happen?” your children will ask. “Where did the great meeting of minds occur?”

“Ah,” you’ll say, mistily. “In Whippendell Woods. That’s where they met.”

We are of course talking about the first meeting of Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and that most beloved of Star Wars characters, Jar Jar Binks.

It is all CGI, except for Liam Neeson, but you too could stand in the spot where Qui-Gon saves Jar Jar from being steamrollered by a droid transport, thus altering the fate of the galaxy (at least, if the “Jar Jar is a Sith” theory is to be believed).

Jar Jar then leads Qui-Gon to meet the rest of his people, the Gungans, in their underwater Gungan city. It’s all very odd, even for Star Wars, and as a result, Whippendell Woods is no doubt a must-see for any fan, whether they actually like Jar Jar or not. It’s just funny.

However, don’t go looking too hard for the underwater Gungan city. As StarWarsLocations.com notes, it doesn’t really exist. It was added digitally, which is probably for the best since it stops us jumping in to recreate the scene where Qui-Gon and Jar Jar go to visit head Gungan Boss Nass.

Star Wars Locations also points out that the main area of filming in the woods is actually very small, but their photos make it clear where the shots are, so you won’t feel cheated if you do decide to visit the woods in a Star Wars mood.

The woods are also famously home to a blanket of bluebells, most visible in early summer, so even though you’re unlikely to see Liam Neeson there anymore in all his Jedi glory, there is still some beauty to be found in the Whippendell Woods.