The Atlanta CNN Center serves as headquarters for the cable TV news giant, CNN. Inside, visitors can see the 24-hour news cycle in action with an insider’s look at newsrooms, control rooms, production studios, and sets, all in addition to the interactive exhibits that chronicle the network’s history.
The 14th-floor CNN Center is an Atlanta icon and one of the city’s most popular attractions. On a guided, behind-the-scenes tour, visitors can learn how television news is written, produced, and delivered. Highlights include the special effects studio, which reveals the technology behind weather maps and on-air graphics; the option to take a souvenir photo behind a news desk; and the glass-walled observation tower in the main newsroom, from where travelers can see writers composing new scripts, camera operators in action, and maybe even a live broadcast taking place. For added value, combine a CNN tour with a visit to the World of Coca Cola, or see the studio with the Atlanta CityPASS, which also includes entrance to other popular attractions such as the Georgia Aquarium, Zoo Atlanta, and the Fernbank Museum of Natural History.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Studio tours last about 50 minutes.
- Tours often sell out in advance, so it’s a good idea to book early.
- The CNN Center houses a large food court and gift shop.
- Tours involve climbing down several flights of stairs, and only some tour options offer elevator access.
How to Get There
The Atlanta CNN Center is located in downtown Atlanta on Marietta Street, just south of Centennial Olympic Park. You can get there via bus or the MARTA train.
When to Get There
The center offers several tours throughout the day, and behind-the-scenes tours depart every 20 minutes. While there’s not really a bad time to visit, the studio is particularly appealing as a mid-afternoon, air-conditioned escape from the Atlanta heat.
Tips for CNN Celebrity Spotting
While you probably won’t catch a glimpse of hosts Wolf Blitzer and Anderson Cooper, it is still possible to spot some of CNN’s other anchors and hosts giving a live broadcast. Your best bet is to book a VIP tour around 9am or noon.