Where to eat, play and stay in Memphis, 3 hours from Nashville

Graceland Mansion. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Nashville may be Music City, but Memphis is home to blues, soul, and rock and roll — and it has plenty to offer, including great food and plenty of attractions.

Here’s what to do and where to eat, drink and stay.

Where to stay

1. The Peabody

There’s a lot to like about this historic hotel, but perhaps the coolest thing is that the ducks visit the fountain in the lobby every day from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • Features: rooftop bar, day spa, same-day laundry and dry cleaning services
  • Rate: $219+ per night
  • Address: 149 Union Ave.

2. The Memphian

The Memphian is an eclectic 106-room hotel that mirrors the artistic Overton Square district that surrounds it.

  • Features: HD TV, free Wi-Fi, 24 hour gym and pet friendly
  • Rate: $219+ per night
  • Address: 21 Cooper Street
The Memphian. Photo: Selavie Photography

3. Downtown Loft (Airbnb)

This completely remodeled loft is in a historic building in downtown Memphis, just steps from AutoZone Park, Beale Street and FedExForum.

  • Characteristics: Free parking, closed terrace and outdoor fireplace
  • Rate: $106 and more per night
  • Location: Downtown Memphis
Where to eat

1. Gus Fried Chicken

With dozens of locations, including two in Memphis, this restaurant is known for its spicy fried chicken.

2. Erling Jensen

Danish chef Erling Jensen’s namesake is a restaurant-turned-home that’s been a popular fine-dining establishment since the ’90s. Notable dishes include lobster pancakes and bison rib eye, and it offers a three-course prix fixe Sunday night for $45.

3. The Bar-BQ shop

The ribs may have been rated #1 by the Food Network, but this barbecue restaurant is known for its Spaghetti Bar-BQ and Texas Toast Bar-BQ sandwich.

What to do

1. graceland

The tour of Elvis Presley’s iconic former home includes an overview of the entire estate, its trophy and racquetball buildings, car collection and private plane, and the meditation garden, where Elvis and the members of his family were buried.

2. National Civil Rights Museum

Located in the former Lorraine Motel – where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated – the National Civil Rights Museum features tons of artifacts, films, oral histories, interactive media and outside listening stations which guide visitors from slavery in America to the crucial events. inspiring the civil rights movement.

An exterior view of the Lorraine Motel during the National Civil Rights Museum tour on January 20, 2019 at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee.
National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel. Photo: Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images

3. Memphis Zoo

Much like Disney World’s EPCOT, walking around the Memphis Zoo is like taking a trip around the world. The zoo features over 3,500 animals in a variety of habitats and is also available to host weddings.

  • Winter hours (Oct. 11 to March 4): daily, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Spring hours (March 5 to Oct. 10): daily, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Address: 2000 Place Prentiss

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