In 2016, my friends and I wanted to do something a little different for spring break. I had recently begun my quest to visit all 50 states, and we had a week to enjoy, so we headed out on what I’m calling the Quintessential Southern Road Trip. Our first stop from Nashville was Memphis, TN.
Lafayette’s Music Room
On the first night, by recommendation, we had dinner at Lafayette’s Music Room (Buffalo wings, chicken and waffles, burgers & sandwiches – all amazing). We enjoyed some classic Memphis dishes while a country duo played for us. We also got photo-bombed in the best way.
The following day we ate a quick breakfast and drove off to the zoo. It was so packed that we were guided to park on the grass. The Memphis Zoo is huge (nothing like the Nashville zoo), and you’ll need at least three hours to walk through the whole thing. There are several food options throughout the zoo, none of which are terrible. You’ll see just about every animal you could imagine seeing in a zoo – elephants, tigers, pandas, polar bears, hippos, penguins…you name it.
Next on our list after the zoo was Graceland, the famous home of the late, great Elvis Presley. I was very impressed with the audio tour at Graceland. I usually hate audio tours – I’d rather walk around and read the signs on my own or have a live tour guide, but this one was quite informative. Plus, it was recorded by John Stamos, which made it instantly more intriguing.
A lot of people say Graceland is not worth the hype. I think that might be true if you make a trip out to Memphis only to see Graceland, but if you can make a full weekend or longer out of it, I think it’s cool.
The room with all his gold records was really fun, but my favorite part was seeing Elvis’ grave. It was a solemn moment shared by all. The house was pretty quiet as we walked through, with a murmur from other tourists here and there, but you could practically feel the silence standing in front of his grave.
A Night on Beale Street
We ended our trip to Memphis by wandering around Beale street, worshiping the great W.C. Handy, and feasting on pulled pork at Pig on Beale. Jackson, MS (three hours away) was our next stop!
I loved my time in Memphis and will most likely be back there one day to see Sun Records, the Stax Musuem, and so many other awesome things that we didn’t have time for on this trip – but if like me, you only have a day or so to spend in Memphis, the above would be a great way to spend it.