Whenever someone asks me for a “must-do” when visiting the Los Angeles area, I always recommend a studio tour. I feel that it is a unique experience and such a cool opportunity that you can tell your friends and family that you got to do while in LA.
I had not heard of the Paramount Studio Tour until I did some research. It is not necessarily the first studio that comes to my mind when I think of a studio that I would like to tour (Walt Disney Studios would be my number one if they offered tours to the public), but it is one of the few studios that offers a backstage pass.
The studio tour takes place at Paramount Pictures’ studio in central LA on Melrose Avenue. After parking your car across the street in a lot and showing your ticket to the guard at the front gate, your group meets up with the tour guide at the Paramount Pictures store. This is where you can get a drink and peruse their gift shop, which includes shirts, mugs, and other items with films and TV shows that have been made at the studio. The tour lasts about two hours.
Our tour guide was awesome, both funny and knowledgeable. Most of the tour is spent either sitting on a golf cart or walking throughout the lot. The tour includes history of the lot, a glimpse at sets and sound stages used for a variety of different shows and movies, and a look through some of Paramount’s prop rooms where you might recognize some pieces. If you have a favorite TV show, I would recommend looking up when the show is filmed as you might get the chance to drive passed crews filming upcoming shows.
There are three options for studio tours at Paramount Pictures, including the general tour, the VIP tour (which is twice as long and includes lunch), and the After Dark tour (and from what I can tell the only difference is that it just takes place at night instead of during the day). This post just reflects on the general studio tour option.