Watching movies is popular in my house, especially on weekends and snow days. When we planned our big California road trip a few years ago, it was a must for our teens to spend the first few days in Hollywood. As luck would have it, our visit coincided with the red carpet premiere of Disney’s Brave.
We also enjoyed going behind-the-scenes on the Studio Tour at Universal Studios Hollywood. It may be considered the “largest working movie studio,” but did you know that many movies and television shows have been filmed in cities up and down the east coast? Locations dot the east coast, including Baltimore, Philadelphia, Boston, even Wilmington (NC).
So, as you start putting together summer plans, especially for young teens, why not put together your own “East Coast Movie Tour.” Take a look at a few must-do’s for your young movie buffs:
Make the Drive to Wilmington. Save the cost of plane tickets to Hollywood and take a studio tour at EUE/Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington (NC). Known by locals as “Hollywood East,” the location boasts more than 400 film-related credits, including shows like Under the Dome and Dawson’s Creek, as well as numerous movies. Teens will love taking a self-guided Iron Man 3 tour through some of the film sites. Or, stroll through beautiful Airlie Gardens, which has been the setting for various films and TV shows. Combine this with a day or two at a nearby beach for a great mini-vacation.
Participate in the Hunger Games (Kind of). Hunger Games fans will love Hunger Games Unofficial Fan Tours, which offers day tours and weekend adventures in North Carolina and Georgia. Head to Henry River Mill Village for a two-hour tour of sites from the movie, including District 12. Or, participate in a game of Archery Tag and eat a Hunger Games-themed lunch. Weekend adventures are offered near Lake Toxaway (NC) and Atlanta. Fans learn survival skills and participate in an actual game simulation during this two to three day adventure.
Go on an On Location Tour. Sign up with On Location Tours to take one of many movie and TV-themed tours in New York City or Boston. Hop on a bus in New York for a tour of over 40 famous movie and TV locations. Several years ago I did the TV and Movie Sites Tour and really enjoyed watching the movie clips just before arriving at each site. Even better, the guides shared their insider knowledge as we traveled throughout the city.
Climb the Famous “Rocky Steps” in Philadelphia. Head to the Philadelphia Museum of Art to see and climb the 72 steps that were made famous in the Rocky movie series. Recently, some tourists were surprised as they were running the famous steps and were joined by Sylvester Stallone who was in town filming a movie. If you or your kids haven’t seen Rocky, be sure to watch the famously inspiring movie scene on your way to Philadelphia.
About the Author: Kath Race and her husband, Rick, live in Northern Virginia with their three teenage children. She shares her road trip adventures at familyTravelsUSA. Kath and her family have visited many national parks, big cities and small towns over the years. She hopes to inspire others to do the same.
Photo Credit: Loren Javier