Memphis might be known as the home of the Blues, but there’s a lot more than a rich music scene and soul food here. Whether you want to see the tourist highlights or experience the city, these are the best things to do in Memphis.
Don’t forget to take time to eat and drink well here too.
Best Things to do in MemphisHow do these rankings work?
This museum is divided into two powerful components: the African American Culture and History Museum and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Museum. This allows you to learn so much of the history behind this diverse and rich culture that has long been mistreated, as well as walk through the hotel where MLK was shot. It’s an emotional experience, so take your time here.
Stax Studios is the music recording house behind many of the best soul and R&B artists. The Beatles even planned to record here until news got out and they were forced to choose another location. The movie presentation reminds you of all the greats like Sam&Dave, Aretha Franklin and Otis Redding who were recorded here before you walk through the sound booth. This is a must-do for music lovers.
Elvis fans can’t miss his home, Graceland. The sprawling property is a destination in and of itself, and it’s easy to while away a few hours here. Vist around the holidays for an added air of festivity.
Pricilla Presley’s former hair salon is now known as Beauty Shop, a boutique restaurant that’s big on flavours. From the starters to the cocktails, these menus are skillful crafted and beautifully executed. You’ll find it hard to choose between dishes, so go with a group and agree to share several.
Memphis is home to some wild bars and great breweries. Places like Ernestine’s and Hazel’s are a fun time–and it was once a brothel in which Ray Charles had a regular room. Don’t skip Molly Fontaine’s House or Bar DKDC either. These crowds are laid back, and the drinks are stiff.
Most know it as Honky Tonk Row, but Beale Street really is home to some great live music any night of the week. Though it’s often filled with people, fight the crowds to experience at least one of the many famous country bars. You might even feel like taking the mic later in the night.
Similar to Stax, Sun Studio was vital to many country and rock artists first starting out. Tour the studio, and bask in its musical history. But, if you’re a musician too, book a slot to record your own music.