If you only have one day in Atlanta

Several years ago I took a trip to Atlanta. With only one day in the city and by myself, I managed to have a memorable time.  All locations were within walking distance and made for a full day in the largest city and capital of the Peach State.



A 55-minute tour of the studio that Ted Turner built features the control room theater, special effects studio, memorabilia from important world events, interactive news desk area, and much more.

There is also an Inside CNN Morning Express Tour with Robin Meade.  Visitors see the set and behind the scenes action.  This tour is held once a week – Thursdays at 8:30 am.  If interested, email stour@cnn.com the full name (including middle name), address, date of birth, and phone number of each member of your party in order to be cleared for entry.  Children under the age of 12 cannot take part in this tour.

The Morning Express Tour was not available when I visited.  If anyone who has been on this tour, please comment below and tell us all about it.

CNN STUDIOS (flickr.com/hyku,WikiCommons)

Hours:  Inside CNN Tour – Daily from 9 am to 5 pm, every 10 minutes.  Closed Easter Sunday, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Prices:  Adults $15, Seniors 65+ and Students 13-18 or with college ID $14, Children 4-12 $10, and Military with Active Duty ID Free.
Inside CNN VIP Tour $35.
Morning Express Tour $49.
Reservations for tours are highly recommended.  Call 1-877-4CNNTOUR Monday – Friday 9 am – 5 pm.  Mention if your party includes a small child.
Click Here to purchase tickets online.

The Inside CNN Tour is a walking tour that descends eight flights of stairs.  Call 404-827-2300 at least 72 hours in advance if anyone in your party will need assistance.  Also call this number if in need of a sign language interpreter or are visually or hearing impaired.  Although the tour is in English only, written translations in several languages are available.

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See the Bottle Works, learn the history, taste over 60 different beverages from around the world.  The company sells more than 500 brands in over 200 countries and not all of them taste like our U.S. version.  There is also a 4-D movie, “In Search of the Secret Formula.”

A 90-minute VIP Tour assigns a guide to groups of approximately 10 and goes into specifics of the brand, answers questions and gives visitors 10% off purchases in the store.

CLICK HERE for a look at different areas of the factory.

Hours:  Click Here to view the calendar.  Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Prices:  Adults $16, senior 65+ $14, youth 3-12 $12, toddler Free w/adult.  Reservations not required.  Partly self-guided, a visit takes approx. 90 minutes.
VIP guided tour $26 – cannot purchase online.  Available daily at 11 am, 1 pm, 3 pm.

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Underground Atlanta is a six-block entertainment area below the streets of downtown Atlanta.  Dining, shopping and history can be found here.  As far as eateries, there’s Footprints, a Jamaican restaurant; Georgia Peach, with live jazz and blues; Scores Sports Bar; Quiznos; Waffle House; and a little bit of everything in the Food Court.  There are also six nightclubs.  I stopped into Johnny Rockets for lunch where the veggie burgers are excellent and loaded with extras.

The shops sell everything from clothing, gifts, souvenirs, snacks, beauty supplies and jewelry to haircuts and fortunes.  There is also a guided history tour, “From Civil War to Civil Rights.”  The tour covers the history of Atlanta, including the Underground, and what life was like in the 1800’s.

Hours:  February through September, Fridays and Saturdays at 11 am, 1 pm, 3 pm; and Sundays 1 pm and 3 pm.

Price:  $6 per person, $5 for groups of 10 or more.

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4)  Margaret Mitchell’s House


Gone With the Wind” was one book on the required reading list during the summer before I entered high school.  A mammoth book, it took me all three months to read.  However, by the end, it made a huge impression on me and I’ve never forgotten it.

This was the last stop in my whirlwind day in Atlanta, and my favorite.  Visitors get to take a guided tour of the apartment where Margaret Mitchell wrote GWTW, see memorabilia from the film, and watch a movie about her life.  The 1939 movie won 10 Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director (Victor Fleming), Best Actress (Vivien Leigh), Best Supporting Actress (Hattie McDaniel, the first African American actress to win).  Clark Gable was nominated for Best Actor but lost to Robert Donat in “Goodbye, Mr. Chips.”

It is the 75th anniversary of the book, which won the Pulitzer.  “The dump” as she affectionately called the apartment, is part of a three-story Tudor Revival building built in 1899.  It was converted into 10 apartments in 1919.  Margaret Mitchell and her husband, John Marsh, moved into their unit in 1925.  The building was abandoned in 1978 but restoration efforts began seven years later.  It was opened to the public in 1997 and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

I found the film about Margaret’s life fascinating and purchased “Margaret Mitchell and John Marsh: The Love Story Behind Gone With the Wind” by Marianne Walker in the gift shop.  It’s an excellent book about two people who worked together to make a masterpiece.

Hours:  Tours begin every half hour Monday through Saturday, starting at 10:30 am.  The last tour starts at 4:30 pm.  Sunday tours begin at 12:30 pm and run through 4:30 pm.
Prices:  Adults $13, Seniors 65+ and Students 13-18 $10, Children 4-12 $8.50.  Tickets include guided tour, parking and access to the exhibitions “Margaret Mitchell: A Passion for Character” and “The Making of a Film Legend: Gone With the WInd.”
Click Here and save $2 by purchasing tickets online.

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August 8, 2011

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