The Solid Waste Management Division has suspended all public and private landfill tours for the remainder of 2020. We are working closely with our partners to ensure your time on a future tour will be safe, as well as enjoyable. Please check back with us in January for an update.

South Wake Landfill Tours

Public Tours

Have you ever wondered what happens to your trash when it leaves the curb? Collection day is just the first day in a long journey for your trash. Join us on a free tour of an active landfill to find out where it all ends up. Tours last 60 minutes and participants are expected to board and ride a multi-passenger bus. Private vehicles are not permitted past landfill gates.

On the tour, you will also learn:

  • Where you can recycle additional household items, not picked up at the curb
  • What common household items are harmful to the environment if placed in the trash
  • Where to dispose of harmful household items safely
  • How to reduce waste at home, school or work
  • How Wake County is using household trash to make energy
"Since taking a tour of Wake County waste facilities and the landfill I've become more knowledgeable and environmentally conscious about my consuming habits"
– Kenice, City of Raleigh.


Location: South Wake Landfill is located at 6025 Old Smithfield Road, Apex, NC 27539.

Waivers: All public tour participants are required to read and electronically sign a waiver during online registration.

Registration: Online registration is required to take a tour. Tour participants must be aged 8 years or older by the date of the tour, no exceptions. A chaperone is required for participants under the age of 16. Tours are prioritized for Wake County residents. 

Private Tours

Private landfill tours are available upon request for schools, businesses, scout troops, colleges, places of worship, and all other community-based organizations operating in Wake County. Tour participants and tour guide are required to ride together in a multi-passenger vehicle. Private vehicle convoys are not permitted past landfill gates.

A minimum of five participants are required for a private tour. Private tours can be requested Monday–Friday, from 9:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. Requests for private tours should be made two weeks in advance. Participants must be aged 8 years or older, no exceptions.

A multi-passenger vehicle is available for private tours for a maximum of seven participants. If your group is larger, a multi-passenger vehicle must be arranged at own expense.

All private tour participants are required to read and electronically sign a waiver during online registration.

For more information on private landfill tours email or call 919-856-7412.

Note: In the event of inclement weather, tours may be canceled.