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Youre Going To Graceland

Things to Do In Memphis Tennessee (Memphis Travel Guide)

That coffee and giant breakfast better have fueled you up, because youre going to Graceland! Obviously, on the way there youll be listening to Graceland

Youll be touring Elvis Presleys home, which is exactly the type of mansion youd expect from a nice young man who suddenly became very famous. .

Without giving away the many secrets of Graceland, I just want to say that I have mad respect for anyone with enough self-love to decorate using both self-portraits AND mirrors, so that everywhere you turn, you see your own gorgeous face. Im taking décor notes. Allow yourself a few hours to see all that Graceland has to offer.

Tour the Rock N Soul Museum

Elvis and Rock n Roll are only one half of the Memphis music equation: soul is the other half. Well OK, theres the Memphis blues too, but they led to soul. Youll learn about them both at the Rock N Soul Museum.

Curated by the Smithsonian Institute, the museum tells the complete story of both sides of the Memphis whole, which are intertwined musically, politically, and racially.

While most of your stops today are focused more on rock n roll than soul, dont worry: youll be getting plenty more soul tomorrow at STAX. The Rock N Soul museum will give you a great context for tomorrows itinerary. Almost like we planned it that way. Muahaha.

Where To Stay In Memphis Tennessee

There are lots of options for where to stay in Memphis. We stayed right in downtown, which was super convenient thanks to its proximity to Beale Street, the National Civil Rights Museum, and the Peabody Ducks. Speaking of: if you can swing it, staying at the Peabody Hotel is WELL worth the splurge!

Here are the best places to stay in downtown Memphis:

  • Stay in a Vacation Rental: This gorgeous modern condo in the South Main Arts District is walking distance to Beale Street and the Civil Rights Museum.
  • Mid-Range Boutique Hotels:The Hotel Napoleon is very conveniently located in central downtown just 5 minutes on foot from Beale Street, as is the surprisingly cool MOXY Memphis Downtown.

Inside A New Adventure At Jumping World

If you thought our last entry was fun, wait until you get a load of Jumping World!

There is entertainment waiting around every corner here and thats nowhere close to an exaggeration. Theyve got foam pits, indoor trampolines, basketball dunking, dodgeball and so much more that its near enough impossible to get through it all in one session.

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Childrens Museum Of Memphis

The Childrens Museum of Memphis

Bursting with noise, color and activity, the Childrens Museum of Memphis is one of the top destinations for families in Tennessee.

It throws out the usual museum experience and trades it for fun, hands-on interaction thats sure to delight your little ones.

Does your daughter love dinosaurs?

Send her to an excavation where she can dig up fossils and gemstones with real archaeology equipment.

Does your son dream of becoming a pilot?

Put him in the drivers seat of a plane, train or fire truck with touchable controls.

Other activities include a rock wall, sand pit, art studio and car garage.

Theres a splash pad for hot days and a carousel when its too wet or cold to play outside.

Weekend programs range from storytime to Zumba classes.

If youre vacationing in Memphis, Tennessee and looking for the best places to visit with kids, swing by the Childrens Museum of Memphis.

It can provide hours of entertainment for kids at every stage of development, and if you pay close attention to the tour guides, you might even learn a little something yourself!

Address: 2525 Central Ave, Memphis, TN 38104, United States

Memphis Brooks Museum Of Art Memphis Tennessee

11 Insanely Cool Things to Do in Memphis with Kids (or ...

The Memphis Brooks Museum of Art is the largest and oldest art museum in the state of Tennessee. Built in 1916, the museum was designed in the Beaux-Arts style by architect James Gamble Rogers.

The funds were donated by Bessie Vance Brooks in memory of her husband, Samuel Hamilton Brooks. A cylindrical extension to the original building was added in 1955. The museum consists of 29 galleries, a research library, an auditorium, and classrooms.

The museums permanent collection includes art from the Italian Renaissance, Baroque, Impressionist, and 20th Century periods. Some of the artists whose works hang in the museum include Gainsborough, Hassam, Homer, Pissaro, and Renoir.

1934 Poplar Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee, Phone: 901-544-6200

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Sunday In Memphis: Soul Civil Rights And Bbq

Saturdays itinerary was all about the music Sundays is all about the history and culture, the story of Memphis, and what makes it the unique city it is today. The story of Memphis is also the story of Black America: from the thriving Black culture and wealth that surrounded Beale Street, to art, music, and food that was born in and created by the Black community, to the integral role Memphis played in the Civil Rights Movement, including becoming the city where Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered.

Heres the thing: Memphis isnt just the home of Rock N Roll. You cant credit Memphis with creating Rock N Roll without also crediting Soul for and Blues for inspiring Rock N Roll. And you cant talk about soul and blues without talking about race.

These musical genres were born from a shared experience of Blackness, a shared experience felt by a displaced population who did not speak one anothers language but felt the universal language of suffering way back when they were enslaved and sang field songs that spoke to the depth of their pain as they worked under whip and lash in the hot sun.

Those field songs later became gospel and blues, which became Soul and Motown, which in turn jumped the fence and became Rock N Roll: a genre rooted in Black rhythm but no longer a Black musical genre.

Things To Do In Memphis Tennessee: Memphis Zoo

The Memphis Zoo is a zoological park owned by the city of Memphis. Established in 1906, the zoo has had its home in Overton Park in Memphis for over 100 years. Set on 76 acres, it is a large zoo featuring over 3,500 animals that represent more than 500 different species. These animals are separated into three zones with 19 exhibits.

The East Zone contains exhibits such as African Veldt, Crocodile Cove, and Teton Trek the Central Zone features Animals of the Night, Commercial Appeal Cat Country, and Primate Canyon. The West Zone consists of the Aquarium, Once upon a Farm, and Tropical Bird House. The zoo has many education outreach programs.

2000 Prentiss Place, Memphis, TN, Phone: 901-333-6500

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Visit The Memphis Museum Of Science & History

How do you explain some of the greatest questions we have about this life and the universe were a part of? Its simple, really, just head on down to the Memphis Museum of Science & History.

Its obviously a bit more complicated than that but this is the kind of learning center we all need. There are attractions, history lessons and even a planetarium for everyone to check out.

Sail Away On The Riverboat Cruise

Top 5 Things to do in Memphis, TN

Sometimes we all need to get away from the concrete jungle atmosphere, if only to immerse ourselves in a different setting and remember what it feels like to get back to basics.

The riverboat cruise wont stand out as an obvious idea for things to do in Memphis, but it comes highly recommended by all who give it a try.

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Jerrys Snow Cones And Burger Shack:

There are snow cones, and then there are Jerrys snow cones! A local friend stressed that I need to make time for a Jerrys stop on my first visit to Memphis. On our way out of town, we decided to get a treat for the road and stopped for our snow cones. This was an experience unlike anything I expected.

Jerrys is located in an inconspicuous building set alone in a neighborhood. It has a walk up window for ordering, and a few picnic tables to sit at. The ice in the snow cones is so fine and smooth, and then in the middle you find delicious soft serve vanilla ice cream! They only accept cash payments and are open year round, except for when theyre closed every Sunday. I recommend the World Famous Snow Cone Supreme with Tigers Blood or Tutti Fruiti syrup!

Dance Your Way Down Beale Street

Americas most iconic street since the 1800s, the history of Beale Street is fascinating and important. From its earliest days it was the site of activism, home to the radical anti-segregation newspaper Free Speech, co-owned and edited by NAACP founderIda B. Wells . It was also home to musicians, artists, brothels, and of course, the most fun bars and clubs in town.

The first Black millionaire of the south was Robert Church, who purchased the land around Beale Street a savvy investment after a yellow fever epidemic left the city scrambling for funds.

Since its early days, Beale Street was a place where you could be freely Black. You could open a business. You could publish a radical, anti-racist newspaper. You could sing and write about the challenges of being Black in a deeply racist country.

The creativity flowing from this mecca of Black talent even attracted white folk, like Elvis Presley, whose style was deeply influenced by the music created by Black artists on Beale Street.

Today, youll hear many an optimist describe Beale Street as one of the first truly de-segregated places in the south.

Today, Beale Street is still an amazing and vibrant place to visit, though we think knowing its history makes it even more impactful. We recommend booking a Beale Street Walking Tour to learn more about the history of this incredible place!

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Visit The National Civil Rights Museum

Your next stop of the day is less than 5 minutes away on foot: National Civil Rights Museum.

Heads up: visiting the Civil Rights Museum is heavy. But without hyperbole, I can say without hesitation that the National Civil Rights Museum is hand down one of the best museums I have ever visited in my life, if not THE best, anywhere in the world. It is a museum capable of reducing you to tears and then building you right back up again.

The detail, the depth of information, the meticulous design, and immersive displays set this museum a cut above any other museum Ive ever visited. You will leave this museum feeling moved. You might also feel inspired. Hopeful. Enlightened. This is a powerful place.

Its not just that the museum is in the Lorraine Motel, the very spot where Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered. Its not just that youll read about his final moments while standing where he stood, or walk across the street to trace the steps of his killer, and then trace the conspiracy theories surrounding the mysterious events that led an unmotivated man to murder the most influential Black man of that time.

No, thats not all that makes the National Civil Rights Museum so powerful.

Children as young as 14 signed their wills and chose to participate in dangerous activism activities daily, fully knowing that they risked their lives every single day. They were beaten, jailed, expelled, and murdered.


Let that sink in for a minute.

Things To Do In Memphis Tennessee: Dixon Gallery & Gardens

11 Very Best Things To Do In Memphis

In the Dixon Gallery and Gardens, humans and nature compete in creating breathtaking beauty. Established in 1976, this art museum boasts one of the best collections of impressionist art in the country with works by Monet, Degas, Pissarro, and others. The collection is housed in the home of the late Hugo and Margaret Dixon, who gifted the house and spectacular gardens to the city of Memphis.

This small museum with its extremely rich collection of art often sends parts of the collection on the road as visiting exhibits. After enjoying the art, stroll through the manicured sculpture gardens with a number of Greco-Roman sculptures. The meticulously landscaped English Garden is surrounded by smaller, more intimate but equally formal spaces.

4339 Park Ave, Memphis, Tennessee, Phone: 901-761-5250

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Chill Out At The Beauty Shop Restaurant

The saying on the front windows is very simple: look good, eat good.

The Beauty Shop restaurant is a really trendy spot in midtown Memphis with a shop that borrows from the 50s beauty-style extravaganza. Its camp, its wonderful and you can sit below a hair dryer whilst planning out your meal.

If that isnt luxury, we dont know what is.

Weekend In Memphis Itinerary Summary

I know, I know this is a long AF post. Yall, dont ever say we arent thorough. Luckily for you, weve compiled our itinerary into a super handy, 1-page downloadable and printable map!

Load it up on your phone so you can easily navigate from place to place, or print it out and make notes on it if youre my mom/me/my sister/anyone else in my family of obsessive note-takers.

Enter your email below and well send this itinerary right to your inbox!

We hope you enjoy meeting the Peabody Ducks, dancing on Beale Street, vibing at Stax Records, visiting Graceland, and tasting real Memphis BBQ on your weekend in Memphis! Were dying to go back, so maybe well see you there!

Psst: Planning a trip to Tennessee? Check out some of our other favorite nearby destinations!

What are you most excited to explore in Memphis? Leave us a comment below!

Did you find this post informative? Save it for later on Pinterest! Note: Full-sized image can be found by clicking the Pin It button.

Disclaimer: This post, and our trip to Memphis, were sponsored by Memphis Travel. Our itinerary was 100% our own, as are our opinions, political leanings, terrible jokes, and references to the Duck Cane which probably has a very respectable real name.

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Fun Local Activities In Cordova

While you will find plenty of enjoyable things to do in Memphis for kids as well as adults, you dont have to leave Cordova to have a good time. Head over to Shelby Farms Park and experience 4,500 acres of playgrounds, hiking trails, bike rentals, boating, fishing, disc golf, and much more.

A post shared by Shelby Farms Park on Sep 22, 2020 at 10:16am PDT

If youre looking for a local Cordova activity you can enjoy inside, make sure you visit Urban Air Trampoline and Adventure Park. This massive space has wall to wall trampolines where you can join dodgeball games, fitness classes, or simply jump around to your hearts content.

Cordova Location & Transportation

Memphis (Tennessee) á? Things to do | Best Places to Visit | Top Tourist Attractions âï¸?

The Memphis neighborhood of Cordova covers an area of approximately 8 square miles in the center of Shelby County. People living in Cordova have easy access to downtown Memphis less than 20 miles away.

As more people are moving to Cordova, the exact borders of the community arent widely disputed. But the most commonly agreed upon borderlines go from Wolf River along the south up to the I-40 on the north side. Then, from Whitten Road on the west over to Pisgah Road on the east side of town.

Cordova is adjacent to other cities and communities including Germantown, Wolfchase, Lenow, and Fisherville. The main zip codes in Cordova are 38016, 38018, and 38088.

Cordova uses the same local transportation as the rest of the city of Memphis, though there are a few less carriers that travel that far. But the area is also part of the Memphis Uber and Lyft service areas, giving you plenty of options for getting around town after moving to Cordova.

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Memphis Brooks Museum Of Art

Art museums can be a great adventure for families, especially if youre visiting a city from out of town. The Memphis Brooks Museum of Art is a perfect place to bring your family and learn about not only the art on display, but also what proper art museum etiquette looks like.

Admission to this art museum is very affordable too, at just $7 for adults, $3 for children 7-17 and free to children 6 and under. If you can go during the week, every Wednesday is Free Wednesday, with free admission for 10 hours. Be sure to check out the outdoor sculptures around the museum as well.

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