Best Area to Stay in Memphis TN

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Memphis is a special place for several music genres with Elvis Presley Mansion, influential music studios for blues and soul music, and modern bars and clubs that feature upcoming artists.

beale street, memphis, blues
BruceEmmerling (CC0), Pixabay

The downtown neighborhood is the heart of the city with attractions like iconic Beale Street, Sun Studio, numerous bars, and pedestrian area that goes all the way to the great Mississippi River. Downtown is also a hub for the best hotels, restaurants, and shops.

If you would like to get the feel of more genuine Memphis, a great choice is the Midtown neighborhood.

Things to do in Midtown Memphis

Not so loud as Downtown, Midtown has plenty of attractions that are worth visiting starting with the Brooks Museum that holds an exceptional collection of European and American sculptures and paintings from artists like Camille Pissaro Winslow Homer or Georgia O’Keeffe.

Midtown is home for Memphis Zoo, one of the largest in the US and only one of four that have pandas. Large Zoo has dedicated children area where they can pet animals, and ride on a train. You could also go to the monkey village or get a glimpse of endangered species like polar bears, elephants, and giraffes.

Overton Park is a large public space with two adventure children playground, extensive forest, a nine-hole golf course and famous open-air Amphitheatre Levitt Shell where Elvis Presley played his first paid concert. The arena holds over 50 free concerts a year.

Live music is available at Lafayette’s Music Room, a famous club from the 1970s that was reopened couple a years ago. You can listen to bluegrass, jazz and blues music and eat southern food in the middle of Overton Square.

Famed Memphis street

If you want to experience Memphis music journey as a foreign tourist, make sure you apply for USA ESTA application on time. The online procedure consists of a detailed questionnaire and a small fee, and the administration will need around three days to process the application. The best advice is to start with the ESTA on time, even before making reservations. Once you get your visiting permit, it is valid for two years. ESTA process is only for visitors from Visa Waiver program

When you land in Memphis, you will want to visit Baele street, the heart and heaven for blues lovers, but also music of other genres. The famed street is 1,8 miles long, and it stretches from East Street all the way to Mississippi. You can find outdoor festivals and concerts, numerous iconic bars. Here artists like B.B. King, Robert Johnson and others performed, you can find nearby Gibson Guitar Factory, and even FedEx Forum, the home of the Memphis Grizzly NBA team is in the vicinity.

Best bars in Memphis TN

If you want to feel the pulse of the city that is the birthplace of rock and blues, bars in Downtown are the places to visit.

Alfred’s Restaurant and Bar was the first place that started playing rock ‘n roll music. Now it features live music in numerous genres, and it is known for a great menu of foods and drinks.

B.B. King’s Blues Club features live blues bands has traditional cuisine including barbecue and shrimp. It is first in a national franchise of B.B. King’s clubs.

King palace Café Tap Room has an enormous selection of draft beers, excellent chicken, shrimp, and ribs meals. If you like southern food, Blues City Café serves some of the best catfish and tamales along with plenty of live music.

Other notable bars in Downtown are Coyote Ugly Saloon, Absinth, Dyer’s Burgers and Club 152.

There is a place for all sorts of cuisine, music, and atmosphere in the Downtown neighborhood, but blues lovers will have the most fun.

Memphis historic sites

Millions of tourists’ flock into Memphis for one reason only, to visit the home of Elvis Presley. His mansion has 70s design, and you can see where the King of rock’n’roll recorded with his band.

The Sun Studio is a small music recording studio where Elvis recorded his first great hit “That’s Alright, Mama” in 1954. In his illustrious past, studio-recorded artists like B.B. King, Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, and Jerry Lee Lewis.

Memphis is an important place for the Civil right movement and a town where Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered. Visit the National Civil Right Museum is a must. The same applies to Stax Museum of American Soul Music, a place where great artists like Isaac Hayes, Otis Redding, Aretha Franklin, and others recorded their music.

The cotton museum is still the most prominent cotton market in the world and a famous historical place where you can find more about slaves that worked in cotton fields. Magevney house is one of the oldest houses in town, built-in 1833 it has much of its original furniture and can send you back in the life of the middle class of early 19th century.

If you want to find out more about majestic Mississippi river, visit Mud Island River Park and Museum. With a large-scale model of the river and the 1870s steamboat The Belle of the Bluffs, you can get to know the history of the iconic American River.

Memphis is an incredible place of many cultural and historical attractions. Make sure you have your ESTA approval before you create a trip plan for this music city on the big Mississippi river. Once you obtain ESTA permit, you can visit the US for up to 90 days.

Bottom line

Memphis is one of the most significant music cities in the world, the birthplace of rock’n’roll, blues and an incredibly important hub for the soul, jazz, and other genres. You can hear live music on every corner, visit numerous great bars, and enjoy great Southern food. There are important historical and cultural attractions and plenty of other things to see and do. Explore Downtown and Midtown neighborhood, go to a Mississippi ship cruise, or explore the history of the Civil Right movement. One thing is sure you will have a great time in Memphis.

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