Take the Inside CNN Studio Tour for a Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Exciting World of Live Broadcast News!
I recently got to cross another item off my 2011 Atlanta Bucket List – taking the Inside CNN Studio Tour. I got ride on the world’s longest and tallest free-standing escalator; I got to stand in the studio where Robin Meade films Morning Express; I got to see where CNN and Headline News teams work to put the news onto my television set, twenty-four hours a day.
I don’t want to give away too many of the fascinating facts our tour guide gave us on the tour, I will give you a couple of interesting tidbits, to whet your appetite
- CNN’s electric bill is somewhere in the ballpark of $500,000 a month – check out the number of computers, cameras, televisions and more in the studios and you’ll see why!
- Before the building was CNN’s headquarters, it was the world’s first indoor theme park, The World of Sid and Marty Krofft – the escalator transported fun-seekers up to a human-sized pinball machine (no joke – ask your guide for more information about this short-lived fun-house)! It opened in 1976 and closed within 6 months.
When I took the tour, it just happened to be as Hurricane Irene was blasting her way up the east coast – in fact, she had just landed in New York City and caused major flooding and damage throughout much of the northeast. The tours continued, however, and our group got to see the newsrooms all a-buzz with action. You never know what might happen on the day of your tour – and it’s exciting to see the news breaking right before your eyes!
There are two prices for the Inside CNN Studio Tours: the regular tour is $15 ($14 for seniors/students and $13 for children ages 4-12) and the VIP tour is $35. Let me tell you, it’s worth the extra $20 to get the VIP tour – you get to go further, see more and get more of a feel of the inner workings of CNN and Headline News. The VIP tour includes expanded access – visit the inside of CNN studio 7, HLN newsroom, peer into the CNN international newsroom. The VIP tour runs daily (except for Sunday) at 11:10 AM and 2:10 PM and includes a commemorative photo of you behind a newsdesk and a visit to the CNN, HLN and CNN.com newsrooms! (NOTE: Children under 12 are not permitted on the CNN VIP tour.)
Reservations are recommended, as tours have a limited number of spaces and do fill up quickly. You can reserve your space for either the Inside CNN Studio Tour or the VIP Tour online by clicking here. Keep in mind, whether you choose the Inside CNN Tour or the VIP tour, both are walking tours and are approximately an hour long, so wear comfortable shoes! Parking lots and decks are plentiful around CNN Center; however, I recommend parking in the garage of the State Bar of Georgia (located at 104 Marietta St. NW, Suite 100, Atlanta, GA 30303) – just two blocks from CNN Center, it’s open to the public and the best priced parking deck around and always has an cashier attendant on-site, no pesky pay-machines here!