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Walking in Memphis – 48 Hours in the Birthplace of Rock'n'Roll

Walkin in #Memphis 🇺🇸🎉

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Hi everyone,

It’s been a while since I last posted any US content, so I thought I’d take you back to Summer 2016 and share a little insight into my short time spent down in Memphis, Tennessee. I was only there for a couple of nights whilst on my Contiki Grand Southern tour but I fitted such a lot into my short time there and I LOVED every second! For anyone looking to spend time in Memphis in 2017, this post is for you! Here’s how to spend 48 hours in this rock’n’roll city…

Pay tribute to Elvis at Graceland

 

#Graceland 🇺🇸🎉🎤

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As someone who has LOVED Elvis ever since I was a little girl I was beyond excited to visit Graceland and was wandering round in awe of all the fantastic things I saw there. Elvis’ music is one of a kind, it is special, just like he was, and visiting his home was a special experience for me too, it almost didn’t seem real at times. Graceland is laid out over 13 acres of land, and you get a lot of time to wander around at your own pace and see everything that you wish to. Your personal ipad and audio guide is handed to you upon arrival and will take you through each room of Elvis’ home, including the grounds as well. I actually had no idea that Elvis himself was buried in the gardens at Graceland, so seeing his grave right in front of me was incredibly moving. My time at Graceland was amazing and something I definitely won’t forget in a hurry – if you’re an Elvis fan you wont want to visit Memphis without stopping here!

Visit the world-famous Sun Studios

 

 

Stepping into one of the most famous recording studios in the world was a special experience for me, and definitely something to tick off the bucket list! The likes of Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis recorded some of their most famous songs in the small surroundings of Sun Studios and it was SURREAL to be holding the same mic and standing in the same spot as all those legends. If you’re a blues fan or a rock’n’roller you will absolutely adore your time at Sun Studios – it’s a must see for music lovers!

Party on Beale Street

 

 

Voted as America’s most iconic street (according to USA Today) Beale Street is perhaps one of the biggest party streets in the US, and one of the most famous too! Here you’ll find everything from jazz bars and soul clubs to honky tonks and restaurants. Beale Street is busy during the day but it comes alive at night, with plenty of places to eat, drink and have a good time! The road is filled with music from every corner and there are street performers, bright lights and live entertainment to keep you mesmerised. I loved my time on Beale Street – listening to live jazz music was amazing and there was just such a buzz about the place. If you like a good night out on the town and you enjoy authentic live music then you’re in for a treat!

See the spot where Martin Luther King was assassinated

 

The assassination site of #MartinLutherKing – may he rest in peace 🇺🇸 #Memphis #Tennessee #america #USA #history

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April 4th 1968 – one of the most famous dates in American history, and one that will certainly never be forgotten. Martin Luther King, the leader of the Civil Rights Movement, was fatally shot at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis and was killed by a single bullet. Seeing the very spot where MLK was assassinated, and learning about the true history of what really happened that day, was incredibly moving. Nowadays, the National Civil Rights Museum has been built around the site of the Lorraine Motel, tracing the history of the Civil Rights Movement in the US, from the 17th century to the present.

Explore one of the many museums

 

#PinkPalaceMuseum & #Mansion #Memphis #sun #sky #beautiful #architecture #building #pink #photography #museum

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Memphis is home to so many fantastic museums and you’d be mad NOT to visit at least one of them during your time in the city. As well as Sun Studios and Graceland, which are wonderful museums in themselves, I’d highly recommend the National Civil Rights Museum and the Rock n Soul Museum, both of which are two of the city’s most visited attractions. If, like me, you’re only in Memphis for 48hrs though, I’d suggest spending time visiting one or two but not trying to visit all of them as you simply won’t have the time! Memphis is full of history and culture and there is so much to learn, but you might need a few more days to be able to explore everything properly!

Cross the Mississippi River

 

Crossing the #Missisippi river over into #memphis 🇺🇸🎉 #grandsouthern #contiki #noregrets @contiki @statravel_uk #america #USA

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As I was on a Contiki tour, we arrived in Memphis by road, passing the Texarkana state-line border before crossing the Mississippi River. Arriving by road meant we could see a lot of the city before we even stepped off the coach; we passed famous avenues such as Beale Street and BB King Boulevard, as well as driving past landmarks such as the Autozone Park, Sun Studios and the National Civil Rights Museum. Crossing the Mississippi River though was, for me, a true bucket list item in itself and was a great way to kick-start my time in Memphis.

Catch a Memphis Redbirds baseball game

 

Baseball baseball ⚾️⚾️ #Memphis

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If you’ve never been to a US baseball game before, you NEED to add it to your bucket-list! The Autozone Park is one of the best places to catch a game, and the Memphis Redbirds are a well known team with a huge following. I was lucky enough to watch a Redbirds game from the hospitality box, with unlimited food and drink included as part of our ticket – winning! At the end of the game we watched the fireworks show set to music which was a spectacle in itself and was a brilliant way to finish the evening. I saw another baseball game in Washington at the end of my trip,  but the atmosphere wasn’t as good as at the Autozone and I didn’t get a red baseball hat to keep either!

 

So there we have it, my top tips on exploring Memphis in a whirlwind 48 hours! Immerse yourself in the rock’n’roll vibe of the city, visit the top music sites, hit up the museums and cross the Mississippi River in style. Hopefully this post inspires you for your trip to the city and helps with that all important planning!

Have you ever been to Memphis? Tell me what you thought of it, I’d love to hear your comments!

Love Jess x

 

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