It was labor day weekend (September) and the weather was gorgeous in Memphis, the spot where we decided to spend the holiday weekend. We arrived in Memphis late afternoon so the weather was still nice and toasty. We headed up to our hotel, the Madison Hotel and was greeted by the friendly staff and grabbed our keys and checked out our rooms. The hotel was gorgeous, clean, sleek and modern, with lots of amenities such as a rooftop bar with great views of the city and a unique restaurant that offers cuisine with some southern flair. Although we liked the digs and found the hotel relaxing, we wanted to really take in all that was Memphis during this short holiday weekend so we headed out to explore.
Our first stop was Beale Street historic district. Although this spot is known for crazy hustle and bustle it really wasn’t too overcrowded yet as it was still early. We were able to walk around and check out the street performers, bars and restaurants without bumping into people too much. We then stopped in a BBQ spot called the Pig on Beale. Although this spot had quite a bit of wait time and came highly recommended, my travel partners that tried the BBQ were not impressed at all with the meal so I’m not sure I can recommend it for the food, (as I also don’t eat meat) but the entertainment/music slightly made up for it. After eating we continued to watch the street entertainment and bar hop as there was always something going on as the crowds got larger and larger throughout the rest of the night into the early morning.
The next morning we ordered some room service for breakfast and then headed out again to sight see, this time via the main street hop on and off trolley and bus options. As it was still a fairly early Saturday morning, the drivers both acted as somewhat of a tour guide showing us different landmarks of interest. We ended up on the riverfront loop, we went past the convention center, the health center, the pyramid, all of downtown and overseeing the Mississippi River. It was then that we noticed a Riverboat and decided to check it out.
We went to the ticket booth and got us some tickets for the sightseeing cruise which was about a 90-minute tour that took us down the Mississippi River with live historical commentary by the tour guide. Here we learned a lot about Memphis and the Mississippi River in conjunction and we had a few drinks and some delicious ice cream while on board, we would definitely recommend this ride.
SAMPLING THE LOCAL EATS
We hopped off the boat and started looking for a local spot to sample some eats. We headed to Gus’ World Famous Fried Chicken and sampled some of their options. Although it was quite a wait the food was delicious. We then headed back to the hotel to clean up for the night and then went to dinner at Texas de Brazil and enjoyed the rest of the Saturday grabbing drinks down Beale Street. It was lively, fun and so entertaining!
Sunday morning we woke up fairly early despite coming in in the wee hours in the morning from Beale street, as we wanted to head to Graceland. You can’t come to Memphis and not see all things Elvis Presley! We grabbed some breakfast at the hotel and then headed to our bus that made a quick stop at Sun Studios (we didn’t go in though) but then headed to Graceland. We got there and was shocked by the crowds even at 9:30 on a Sunday morning! The wait time was so long that we walked around and explored the external property. After almost TWO hours of wait time we went inside the mansion’s guided tour. It was worth the wait as it was interesting to hear the history and learn more about his life. After the tour we ate at the Elvis themed burger joint- Glady’s Diner that was on the premises, however, the food there was lackluster.
DINNER AND ROOFTOP BAR
We headed back to our hotel and then got ready for dinner. We ate a this restaurant called Flights which was awesome (more on that to come in another post) and then headed back to spend the last night in Memphis at the rooftop bar at our hotel. The rooftop bar was pretty happening and had awesome cocktails and beautiful views. We stayed and watched the sunset and danced and enjoyed our drinks and good conversation.
All in all this trip was a blast and I would recommend Memphis to anyone looking for a quick trip in Tennessee.