Have you explored West Tennessee and its regional treasures? With a landscape, history and culture uniquely its own, this Tennessee region is just waiting for you to explore. Discover the hidden gems, city nightlife and small town escapes with the three-day itinerary below. Stay as long as you like and make as many memories as you please in West Tennessee.
The James Lee House
You'll want to curl up in this lap of luxury and never leave. The James Lee House Bed & Breakfast was built in 1848 and added onto in 1853 and the appearance unified in 1873. Today, guests can book one of the five suites available, all sumptuously decorated in fine linens, furniture and accessories. Modern amenities like state-of-the-art marble showers, LED television and individual climate control is available. Enjoy a gourmet breakfast every morning and, of course, wireless internet.
Get a lay of Memphis’ music impact on your first day in the city with a pilgrimage to some of Memphis’ iconic spots. Sun Studio is first on the list as it was the site that made famous the Million Dollar Quartet: Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis. Tours of the most famous recording studio in the world are given 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.
Stax Museum of American Soul Music
Continue to Stax Museum of American Soul Music where you’ll learn how soul music came to be. From the 1906 Mississippi Delta church replica to Isaac Hayes’ custom Cadillac Eldorado to the endless records displayed on the Wall of Sound, a visual of all the albums and singles released by Stax and its lables from 1957-1975.
Elvis Presley’s Graceland
Your final music stop of the day is Elvis Presley’s Graceland, Memphis’ most popular attraction. Pay homage to the King of Rock n’ Roll as you tour his eclectically designed rooms, see his famous jumpsuits, albums and other memorabilia, and pay respects in the Meditation Garden. Opt for the interactive iPad tour as John Stamos hosts the audio presentation with commentary and stories told by Elvis’ daughter, Lisa Marie.
Memphis Brooks Museum of Art
Continue the music and culture vibes with a visit to Brooks Museum of Art. From contemporary to traditional and even ancient art, Brooks has a widespread catalog of sculptures, paintings, wood carvings and more that are on rotation. The museum also plays host to a wealth of traveling exhibitions as well.
Photo credit: Kevin Barre Photography
Memphis Botanic Garden
The 96-acre Memphis Botanic Garden boasts 29 specialty gardens including an Asian garden filled with plants from China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan; butterfly garden with passion flower and violets that attract butterflies; the desert garden that houses succulents, cacti and sub-shrubs; and the sculpture garden where sculptures mix with plants and flowers to create a relaxing outdoor space.
Tina Turner Museum and Flagg Grove School
Start your day with the West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center in Brownsville. Here’s where you’ll find the home of Sleepy John Estes, a blues guitarist, songwriter and vocalist, and the one-room school house Tina Turner attend when she was growing up in Nutbush, Tennessee. Filled with original chalkboards and desks, the schoolhouse, now the Tina Turner Museum of Flagg Grove School, has lots of Tina’s memorabilia including costumes, posters, videos and more.
Tennessee Safari Park
Meet some of the friendliest animals on your drive through Tennessee Safari Park. For $14 ($10 for kids ages 2-12), you can take a drive to see one of the largest collections of zoo animals in the state. The 5.5 miles of dirt roads lead you to alpaca, a dromedary camel, axis deer, African warthog, white bearded wildebeast and more. Walk through the zoo to see pygmy goats, peacocks, red-ruffed lemurs and more.
Have some sips and enjoy the Tennessee sights at Crown Winery. The 17 wines range from a variety of tastes from merlot to moscato, chardonel to sangiovese. Enjoy a tasting then buy your favorite bottle to take home after your Tennessee visit.
Brooks Shaw's Old Country Store and Casey Jones Village
End the day at Casey Jones Village for Southern home cooking done right. At Brook Shaw's Old Country Store, you’ll experience the delicious fried chicken, stuffed bell peppers, breads, desserts and fresh fruit and salad bars. Save enough room for dessert at the Old Country Store Ice Cream Parlor & Fudge Shoppe, named as one of the top 50 ice cream parlors in America by USA Today.
Main Street Collierville
It’s time to relax with leisurely strolls in downtown Collierville, the quaint town 35 minutes from bustling Memphis. From antiques to the latest trends in fashion and accessories, it’s a morning well spent walking among the shops and enjoying the impeccable landscape in the area.
Meeman-Shelby Forest State Park
Spend your afternoon exploring some of the more than 12,000-acre Meeman-Shelby Forest State Park that's full of hiking trails, fishing spots, and more than 200 species of birds including the American bald eagle. Play disc golf on one of the largest courses in the Southeast. The wooded course challenges players along the two 18-hole courses. Stay to see the sun dip under Poplar Tree Lake, the 100-acre lake, for some beautiful views.
B.B. King's Blues Club
End the day exploring Beale Street, listening to the soul, rock n' roll and blues flow from the music venues that line both sides of the street. Pop into B.B. King's Blues Club to see and experience the famous venue. Grab a drink and kick up your feet before leaving Memphis full of memories and music, made in Tennessee.
Preserved mountains, rivers, streams, valleys and hills stretching thousands of miles in Tennessee are such thanks to the National Park Service, celebrating 100 years in 2016.