The CW’s Vampire Diaries filmed on location in Covington, GA nestled just outside of Atlanta and makes for a wonderful day trip or overnight visit.
While most people have probably had their fill of vampires and teenagers with the Twilight saga, my wife has recently discovered the CW’s Vampire Diaries television show. Naturally, I have begun watching alongside her with some interest as Kevin Williamson is the main producer for the show. For those not familiar with Williamson, he was the producer for Dawson’s Creek which captured the teen angst and spirit better than any show that has come before it or after it. I enjoyed Dawson’s Creek and after watching several episodes of Vampire Diaries, it is apparent that Williamson still understands the teen dynamic.
The show itself is supposed to be set in fictional Mystic Falls, VA but actually is filmed in Covington, GA which is known as “Hollywood of the South” by many in the television and film industry. I recently surprised my wife by planning an overnight weekend trip to Covington to do some sightseeing of some of the show’s locales. We booked a room at the only bed and breakfast in Covington called 2119 The Inn. It was our first bed and breakfast experience which can be a bit awkward for those used to hotels. We unpacked the few items we had and walked to the downtown square area.
Covington’s Downtown Square
The Square in Downtown Covington has a tremendous amount of television history attached to it and those who visit the area will swear they’ve been there before. While the area has certainly changed a great deal since then, my memory of the General Lee driving around in circles around the park immediately came back to me when I saw the area. There are local shops surrounding the perimeter of the park with some offices interspersed. The biggest draw for fans of Vampire Diaries is of course the Mystic Grill sign which is featured prominently in many episodes. Unfortunately, there is no real restaurant located beneath the sign but if you need your taxes done, the accountant’s office located there may be of some assistance.
Fans may also note one of the rooftops along the square is where Damon and Stefan had their rooftop scuffle with Vicky stuck in the middle. The park’s statue was used in the Founder’s Day episode which featured a parade through the square as well. We arrived a little late in the afternoon so we didn’t get to go in all of the shops but there are several antique stores, a “hardware” store that has nearly everything in it, an art gallery and an ice cream parlor which became one of the best parts of the trip for us. Scoops is said to be one of the favorite spots for the stars of the show to go and grab a treat before and after filming. We didn’t spot any of the gang but did enjoy their smoothies.
Covington’s historic Houses tour
After finishing up with downtown, we walked a bit down Floyd St. right off of the square. I had already mapped out several of the houses used in the filming of the Vampire Diaries prior to the visit and Elena Gilbert’s house was the first stop at 2104 Floyd St. The house sits right on the corner and was actually for sale when we were down there. The interior shots for most locations are actually done in a studio in Atlanta and not actually at the house.
At 2129 East St. SE, Tyler Chatwood’s estate can be seen although not up close as it is gated and not open to the public as far as I can tell. Gram’s house is at 2136 Conyers St. SE and features the Covington Cemetary right behind it. All of these are well within walking distance of the square and feature many other historical homes along the walk.
Beyond the Covington Square
For those looking for more Vampire Diary locations, hop in the car and head over to Sandy Springs, GA but you might need to call ahead to make sure you’re able to see the Salvatore Boarding House at 688 Abernathy Rd. NE. The boarding house is actually Glenridge Hall, a private residence located in the suburbs.
As far as specific filming locations, that is all we were able to find although we did get to see some of the extras for Footloose 2 getting set to film near the courthouse in downtown Covington. I didn’t recognize and of the people but they were all dressed as if they were going to a prom. My wife has already decided that we are going to be extras in The Vampire Diaries at some point so we are planning another trip to Covington for that reason alone. Hope this guide helps you out on your next trip to Covington, GA.