As if you need me to give you a good reason to check out The Walking Dead filming locations. I mean you know as well as I do you’re a total fan (or let’s be honest you wouldn’t have arrived to this article). Well you’re in good company. I’ve been a fan of the hit AMC TV series since it first began in 2010. When I found out Atlanta Movie Tours would be bringing me on not one but TWO of their “Big Zombie” tours, I about fell over.
Can I just go back to this again… The Walking Dead filming locations!!!!!!! Like c’mon!!! Now I could list here a detailed index of all the film spots in Atlanta and in southern Georgia but that’s completely dumb. First of all there’s a book that will cost you $30 in the official The Walking Dead Store and will detail this for you. I bought the book for reference. If you had it in your hands right now you could essentially go to these places yourself, but you still wouldn’t have the experience I had. Why? Glad you asked.
Atlanta Movie Tours is a professional company which specializes in (say it with me) film locations. Their guides are extras in The Walking Dead and by extras I mean WALKERS!!! So you get a very exclusive look at these locations from like minded uber fans who have experienced first hand what the production is like. You know what that is? Really effing awesome that’s what.
This is what I took from my experience with Atlanta Movie Tours as a whole and why you should go to The Walking Dead filming locations with them… and not on your own
- Inside scoop on production
- Every question you could possibly ask answered
- A smashing coach to shuttle you around Atlanta (Big Zombie 1) and southern Georgia (Big Zombie 2)
- You get to take photos of key places in the show
- Atlanta Movie Tours has special KEY ONLY access to a few of these places which allows you to actually go inside! YES, INSIDE!
- You don’t feel like Senior Sketch McGetch creeping around properties because you have an authorized guide with you
So let’s talk about the separate tours and my own little special experience for each
Big Zombie 1 Tour in Atlanta
The Logistics: This was the first of the two tours I took with Atlanta Movie Tours. It was super easy to get to. If I can do it by myself you can do it. It went like this. At the Atlanta airport I caught a shuttle courtesy of Super Shuttles. This was free to me (sponsored) but I can say they were awesome. It’s less than $20 for the roundtrip. It took me to my hotel the W Midtown Atlanta which was totally baller, a totally perfect place to stay with very reasonable rates. The rooms were swanky and the hotel had lots to offer. The elevators were a pain in the butt because there was a wedding but that’s to be expected. From the hotel I called an Uber taxi (if you haven’t heard of this service it’s a luxury personal driver. You download the app and pay on there. No tipping, it’s beautiful). It was $7 to get to the Castleberry Hill office to start my tour.
The Tour: The Big Zombie 1 tour takes you through The Walking Dead filming locations from season 1 in downtown Atlanta. You get to see 15 places including:
- Nelson Street
- Terminus (when they all arrive)
- The Sheriff’s Office
- The Hospital Rick wakes from his coma in
- The retirement home
- The famous Atlanta skyline and more
Here are some pics I took on this tour. My favorite location was the hospital Rick walked out of in Season 1 when he discovered the bodies in the parking lot. You can see more in my instagram here. This is a great tour which was guided by Charlie, one of the more famous walkers on The Walking Dead. He’s extremely knowledgeable about the show and the filming locations, and he will even sign a high res glossy of him as a walker for just $10.
Other things to do in Atlanta: If you want to spend some extra time in the city, there’s the College Football Hall of Fame, the CNN Studio Tour and the World of Coca-Cola which I personally experienced and loved all. I was given a CityPass by the Atlanta Tourism Office, which really is a great value of you’re going to explore the destination. The CityPass is under $75 for adults and gets you access to these and a couple attractions. I can also highly recommend going to the Atlanta Botanical Gardens. Super cool and they even have various exhibits going on as well. A night stroll in there is the bees knees. For more information on things to do in Atlanta check out their tourism site here.
Big Zombie 2 Tour in Senoia AKA Woodbury
The Logistics: So this is a little more tricky and if you’re going to do this tour or both of these tours you should just rent a car at the airport. I can advise you use Kayak.com for booking. They are usually the most inexpensive. Google maps works brilliantly on your smart phone and will guide you with ease from the airport to the Atlanta Movie Tours offices. You will have to pay for daily parking at the garage which connects to the W Midtown Atlanta if you choose to stay there. The fuel from the airport to Senoia and back was under $10.
There’s an amazing little coffee shop under the official Walking Dead gift store called The Waking Dead Cafe. It’s essentially a Starbucks and has an awesome bacon egg and cheese croissant. You will want to bring some milk money for fandom finds in the gift shop. There’s a few cool things in there. Also, the town of Senoia is a charming, sleepy little place with ‘Pottery Barn’ like antique shops, boutique restaurants, ice cream and gift shops. Many of these storefronts and even inside of the stores have been used in the show. So take your time, take lots of pics and stroll around Senoia AKA Woodbury before you go on your tour.
The tour starts at 2:30, I recommend getting there by 11ish. It’s only 40 minutes south of the W Midtown Atlanta and the Atlanta airport is between the 2. It took me 25 minutes to get to the airport from Senoia.
The Tour: The Big Zombie 2 Tour takes you through Walking Dead filming locations for seasons 2-5. This is my favorite of the two tours. Not because it’s better, but because you get so many more seasons. Plus if you’re doing this trip between May and November you get to see the production trailers and sets. To me this is just awesome. But in all honesty, if you’re truly a fan you’re going to be doing both of these tours, let’s be realistic. On this tour you’ll see 14 filming locations. These are some of the most recognizable spots:
- Alexandria and the wall (you can’t go in here but you can see it)
- Pudding house
- The area where Daryl offs Merle
- The area (key entry) where Michonne finds all the walkers locked in cages and where the Governor rallies
- Morgan’s apartment (key entry) and plenty more
Here are some pics I took on the tour. My favorite spots on this one was Morgan’s apartment and the place where Daryl offed Merle. It really was an awesome day from start to finish. The tour was guided by Colin, Kent and Stephanie. They were amazing. Kent and Stephanie are walkers in The Walking Dead, Colin is an extra with weapons! They all sign autographs as well. They were $10 for Kent and $5 each for Colin and Stephanie. Colin is the main guide and he is amaze balls. Seriously a film encyclopedia.
On a side note: There’s a historic Bed & Breakfast right in town. We stayed here and can totally vouch for it, it’s terribly charming. Maybe you’ll see one of your favorite stars as they roll in to work. They mostly live in Atlanta but come in Monday through Friday for filming. PLEASE DON’T BE AN ASS. These are professionals just trying to do their job. They are known to be really cool with fans but when you get all 13 year-old Bieber fan on them they run… and they should. That’s just lame. Don’t be lame.
The Atlanta Movie Tours guided Walking Dead filming locations tour is really the only way you should be getting geeky with it. You’re really getting the best experience and knowledge this way. I loved the tour and will stand 100% behind it (and I was not paid to say this). This is an epic fandom trip and one you will always remember. Like how cool would you be if you got this as a gift for your partner or friend / sibling? Just sayin. Book a tour with Atlanta Movie Tours here. Both tours run $65 each and are worth every cent. You can even buy a gift certificate.