• Take these 6 offbeat tours around Atlanta

    By: Rose Kennedy For the AJC


    Whether you're visiting, hosting or staycationing in Atlanta, maybe it's time to branch out on the tour front.

    Sure, the CNN studio tour and Gone With the Wind tour are highly entertaining, but face it, they're standard stuff.

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    If you'd like something a bit offbeat, the not-so-famous, the path less taken, consider these six Atlanta tours:

    Atlanta Party Ride's Pokemon Go Tour
    Sat.-Sun. 10 a.m., 12 noon, 2 p.m., 4 p.m.
    $35 per person, hour and a half, 10 person minimum
    Night tours Fri.-Sun. 8 p.m. and 12 midnight, $50 per person two hours with full bar, must be 21
    145 Northwood Drive, Atlanta

    Even if you're slowly realizing you will never catch them all, this Pokemon Go hunt in tour format is great for fans of all levels.

    For one, you can socialize without having to pretend you're not sneaking looks at your handheld to see if Charizard is in the neighborhood. Second, they plan all the routes and where to park and show off a bunch of landmarks along the way. And third, it all happens on an air-conditioned party bus.

    Go forth and seize the gym.

    Chick-fil-A Home Office Backstage Tour
    One-hour tours  9 a.m., 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Tuesday-Friday, $10 per person; 2 hour tours Mondays 1:30 p.m., $20 per person
    5200 Buffington Road, Atlanta
    If you're serious about eatin' more chikin or learnin' how one man founded a fast-food empire, this is the tour for you. Selfies with costumed cows are encouraged.

    Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta Monetary Museum tour

    Free self-guided tours 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday; groups of 10–30 people can schedule free guided tours with two weeks notice
    1000 Peachtree St., Atlanta
    Money for nothing – this tour's for free. A great choice for history buffs and money grubbers alike, you'll see rare coins and currency and the bank's automated vault and cash processing area. These folks and their machines count, sort or shred millions daily.

    Atlanta Motor Speedway track tour
    $10 adults, $8 seniors 65 and older, $5 children 6-12, under 5 free
    Tours every hour from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday, depending on track availability. Call in advance to schedule regardless of group size
    1500 Tara Place, Hampton. 770-707-7970
    Revved about NASCAR? This tour lets you see how the speedway looks without hundreds of thousands of other fans.

    Highlights include a visit to Petty Garden and a look at a speedway suite, the garages and Victory lane. And while no one's gonna mistake you for Kyle Bush, you also get to take three laps around the track – in the Speedway van, that is, with a track employee behind the wheel.

    Atlanta helicopter tours of Stone Mountain
    $150 per person, 22 minutes
    Departing Dekalb-Peachtree Airport, 2000 Airport Road.
    Tour company address: 1 Corsair Dr., Atlanta. 404-500-6468

    Marketers always add, "as you've never seen it before," but this really is Stone Mountain as you've never seen it before.

    You'll copter around the largest high relief sculpture in the world, aka the Confederate Memorial Carving depicting Confederate president Jefferson Davis and Generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson. It's larger than Mount Rushmore or a football field and you'll get the aerial view.

    Monastery of the Holy Spirit day tour from Atlanta
    Adults $66.55, seniors 65 and older $61.40, children 4-12 $56.20, 3 and under free
    Pickup locations from select Atlanta hotels

    Inspiring in a completely different way than the World of Coca-Cola, this mostly self-guided tour takes you to a Trappist monastery in rural Conyers. The massive Abbey Church alone took 15 years to build. A boxed lunch is included.

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