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Helen, Georgia: Fantasy Kingdom (Gone)

Gone since ~ 2003.

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Rabid Queen of Hearts.

Fantasy Kingdom is gone

Sadly, the Fantasy Kingdom and Museum of the Hills in Helen, GA's Castle Inn are no more. The Castle Inn is still there, but according to the folks there, they took everything out about 3 years ago and auctioned everything off. In its place are a bunch of new gift shops (just what Helen needs -- more gift shops).

Submitted are a few of our favorite pictures from our visit in July, 2000, including the rabid Queen of Hearts.

[Tony & Kimberly Paglia, 09/15/2003]
Fantasy Kingdom

Besides the fact that Helen, Georgia is a strange attraction in and of itself ("Alpine Helen"), something that you've not mentioned is their "Museum of the Hills" and "Fantasy Kingdom"! It's located on the main "Strasse" of Alpine Helen, in the bottom floor of a hotel designed to look like a castle. Admission is free and unlimited if you board at the Castle Inn. In the window is an animatronic old "hillbilly" named Barney and a rather poorly looking stuffed Blue Tick hound. You're offered a self-guided tour through a wax museum, "visiting" Southern hill people at the turn of the century. The figures and tour both suffer from the town's weird sense of humor, and if you stay in the town a bit, you'll start to notice what I mean. After a rousing visit to the still and an evening of barn dancing, the children sleep, and you're magically transported to a second -- increasingly more strange but lovable -- museum of fairytales.

Bonus: In our stay in the turreted room of the Castle Inn, we could hear the singsong rhyming of Fantasy Kingdom in our bathroom. We highly suggest your visit to Helen be in the off-season (not summer, and definitely not October) -- the wintery mountains and basic desertion of the town make it all the more surreal.

[Meredith and Scott, 03/04/2000]

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