Drive-In Theatres in the Georgia Mountains
There are times when you want to just unwind with a fun movie and some popcorn. Fortunately, the North Georgia mountains have some amazing historic theaters, including 2 of Georgia’s 5 drive-in theatres! Enjoy a first-run film or a campy classic from the comfort of your own car or outside on the lawn.
These outdoor theaters provide a fun and affordable way to enjoy a date or family night. Arrive early to get a great spot and enjoy a picnic and outdoor games while waiting for the movie to start. Additionally, these drive-ins often show a double feature, offering you 2 movies for the price of one!
There has never been a better time to visit a drive-in theater, as these unique destinations have always had more physical distancing built-in to the movie-watching experience than a traditional theater. However, additional precautions are also taken now, including reduced theater capacity, additional bathrooms, and additional wash stations.
Definitely make sure to arrive early, as drive-ins around the country are making headlines for their recent comebacks and surge in popularity (see articles from AJC, CNBC, CNN, and NY Post). Make sure you get a ticket and a great viewing location!
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Drive-In Theaters in the North Georgia Mountains
The Georgia mountains are full of great ways to relax, including the old tradition of visiting a drive-in movie theater. While there used to be over 5,000 drive-in theaters around the world, today, only around 300 remain (less than 250 drive-in theaters with digital projection remain in the USA). Fortunately, two drive-ins are located in the Northeast Georgia mountains and make for a great night out!
With the number of drive-in theaters declining, visiting one now is a great idea!
Swan Drive-In Theatre in Blue Ridge, GA
The Swan Drive-In Theatre has been a part of the Blue Ridge scene since 1955 and has a rich history from both its early beginnings through its more recent 2014 appearance in the Hollywood thriller Need for Speed starring Aaron Paul (look for the “Mt. Kisco Drive-In” at the beginning).
Today, the Swan Drive-In Theatre offers a unique taste of the past with current first-run movies. Enjoy a movie from outside under the stars or from the privacy and comfort of your car (note that movies will play rain or shine). Your pets are allowed if they play nicely (no disturbances) and remain on a leash.
The Swan is equipped with FM stereo sound and works by tuning your radio to 105.5 FM. Full concessions are available on-site, including hamburgers, hot dogs, corn dogs, french fries, funnel cakes, nachos, fried Oreos, popcorn, and candy!
No outside food or drink are allowed. No grills or food deliveries. No re-entry allowed.
SWAN DRIVE-IN HOURS
- Open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights
- Box office opens by 7:00 pm (earlier if there is a line)
- The first movie usually starts after dark / around 9:00 pm (check the website for details)
- Often, admission includes a double feature, which can go late!
SWAN DRIVE-IN PRICING
The Swan Drive-In now accepts cash, major credit cards, Apple Pay, and Google Pay.
Swan Drive-In Reviews and Contact Info
- Call: +1 (706) 632-5235 or +1 (706) 632-6690
- Address: 651 Summit Street, Blue Ridge, GA
- at the Swan Drive-In marquee, follow the road for about 500 yards, and look for the ticket booth on the right
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: swan-drive-in.com
- Facebook: Swan Drive-In Theatre is rated 4.4 with 2,950+ reviews and 20,000+ likes
- TripAdvisor: Swan Drive-In is rated 4.5 with 275+ reviews
- Ranked #1 for “Fun & Games” in Blue Ridge
Tiger Drive-In Theater in Tiger, GA
The Tiger Drive-In originally opened in 1954, closed in the mid-1980s, and reopened again in 2004. The drive-in now hosts regular movie showings and special events like concerts, Hot Rod night, weekend farmer’s markets, flea markets, and family reunions.
Tiger Drive-In is proud to be one of only 349 drive-ins left in the world and to offer current, first-run movies with modern amenities and high-quality digital projection. Enjoy grass terraces, Pandora pre-show music, free WiFi, and the delicious TDI Grill. Bring a picnic blanket or cozy up in the car. Credit cards are accepted at this pet-friendly facility.
Tiger Drive-In Hours
Be sure to arrive early to ensure you get the best spot to watch your movie!
- Open April through November on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights
- 6:00 pm: ticket office opens / TDI Grill opens
- 9:15 pm: first movie starts
Tiger Drive-In Pricing
Stop in for dinner and a movie, or pay extra to stay overnight!
- Camping (pets allowed)
- $99.00 per night + taxes and fees for rental of a vintage camper on site (campers include movie viewing platform, 2 movie tickets, coffee and cereal for the morning, hot and cold outdoor shower, and bathrooms)
Tiger Drive-In Policies
- Pets are allowed but must be kept on a leash
- Movies will show even during rainy weather
- Online ticket sales do not guarantee a spot — patrons are allowed in on a first-come, first serve basis
Tiger Drive-In Reviews and Contact Info
- Call: +1 (706) 782-1611
- Address: 2956 Old US Highway 441 S, Tiger, GA
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: tigerdrivein.com
- Facebook: Tiger Drive In Theater is rated 4.4 with 1,475+ reviews and 24,000+ likes
- TripAdvisor: Tiger Drive In is rated 4.5 with 25+ reviews
Tips For Enjoying a Drive-In Movie
Watching a movie at a drive-in theater is much like seeing a movie at a traditional theater. For the best experience, arrive early to secure a great parking spot and set yourself up comfortably for watching the movie. You can choose to bring a boombox-type radio and sit outside your car for the movie or stay inside your car and use the car’s FM radio for the movie soundtrack. As capacity has been reduced at theaters, arrive early to ensure you get a parking space!
Pull forward into your space if you are going to watch from the front seat of your car, but back into your space if you’re planning to watch from the bed of a truck or the back of a hatchback.
As the second show often goes late (past bedtimes for kids), do not be surprised to see that many kids opt to wear their PJs to the movie and fall asleep in the car sometime before arriving home.
General Tips for Drive-In Movies
- Arrive early
- Ensure you get a ticket (shows have been consistently selling out)
- Get the best parking space (a shaded area if you arrive early when it’s hot, near the exit if you like to beat the crowds after the movie, get close to the screen for fewer distractions, etc.)
- Wear comfortable shoes that are suitable for uneven grass, dirt, or gravel pathways (high heels are not a good option)
- Turn off car lights after dark (both interior and exterior)
- Plan to turn off your car during the movie – the sound of a running car and the smell of exhaust will distract from the movie
- Note that it will be hard to see the screen from the backseat of a car — plan to bring lawn chairs or blankets for better viewing outside of the vehicle for backseat car occupants
- Bring portable radios to listen to movie soundtrack outside of the car
- Bring flashlights to walk around after dark and/or glow sticks to help identify your party
- Opt for non-breakable / non-glass items where possible, as it’s very challenging to clean broken glass items from a dark, grassy lawn
If you’re watching from inside your car, you’ll want to ensure that your car is clean and well-maintained:
- Wash the windshield and windows (take cleaning materials with you to the theater in case your windshield gets dirty en route)
- Vacuum the seats, floor mats, and floorboards
- Polish and dust the dashboards, doors, and other surfaces
- Clear trunk of unnecessary items
- Make sure the car battery is strong enough to power the radio throughout the show (run the car at intermission if needed, but please keep your headlights off)
If you plan to watch from a larger vehicle (like an SUV with an open hatchback), you may need to park in the back of the lot so that you do not obstruct the view of those behind you. Theater staff may ask you to move if your vehicle blocks the view for others.
What to Take to Drive-In Movie Theaters
A bit of advance planning will help you to enjoy your drive-in experience even more. Be sure to pack these items to ensure the most comfort and best drive-in movie experience possible.
Movie Watching and Pre-Movie Setup
It’s perfectly acceptable to stay inside your car to watch the movie, but you will probably prefer to watch from outside on a nice night. Additionally, people in the backseat will have a better view of the screen outside the car.
Your best bet is to bring a comfy chair for everyone and a multi-purpose table (dinner, snacks, card games, lanterns, centerpieces, etc.) for your night.
Movie Watching Truck / Van / SUV Setup Options
For those driving a truck, van, or SUV to the drive-in, you may wish to clear the back of the vehicle and put down an air mattress for comfy viewing.
Listening to the Movie Soundtrack
You’ll need an FM radio (not internet radio) in order to listen to the FM broadcast of the movie soundtrack. You can use your car radio, but if you’re outside your car, you will do better with a portable radio/boom box.
Snacks and Drinks
You can purchase many local favorites at the on-site concession stands, but you can also bring picnic items to enjoy at Tiger Drive-In. Great for those on strict or picky diets!
- Disposable picnic ware for easy cleanup
Personal Comfort at a Drive-In Movie
Make sure you’re ready for the current outdoor environment at the drive-in. Bring cooling towels and personal fans for the hottest Summer nights. Keep jackets and blankets handy for nighttime chills. A small flashlight for each person in your group can help them navigate to the bathroom/concession stand after dark.
Pre-Movie Entertainment and Games
These fun items will help to make your tailgate and downtime between movies more enjoyable. Classic games like corn hole and ladder toss are great options, or you could also opt for glow-in-the-dark / light-up versions of these games that make it easy to play at any hour!
Note that as there are generally a lot of cars in the area, it’s best to avoid throwing harder objects (like baseballs or softballs) that could get loose and break car windows/lights. Also be extremely careful and always be aware of any cars driving through the area.
Fun Things That Glow
Glow sticks, necklaces, armbands, and toys are a fun treat, and they can also help locate friends and family after dark! Attach a fun glow-stick creation to your car to find it more easily in the dark.
Protection from the Elements
Part of the drive-in fun is the chance to enjoy time outside, but make sure to include protection from the sun, bugs, and other elements.
Keep some cleanup essentials on hand to ensure you’re equipped to handle spills and surprises.
Finally, it’s always a good idea to have a few safety items on hand in your vehicle. Include a basic first aid kit and these items that can help when your car battery isn’t strong enough to last through the double feature.
Enjoy this unique opportunity to combine outdoor time with this classic form of entertainment at North Georgia’s drive-in theaters.